Just a little more than a generation away from Jim Crow prohibitions which limited and, in most cases, prohibited business loans, property ownership and access to certain jobs, the original entrepreneurial hubs in Austin are not downtown, but were centered in Austin’s Black and Brown communities.

Excluded from traditional fundraising pathways such as business loans, Austin African Americans and Latinos were the city’s self-starting original entrepreneurs, inventing “hustle” and “crowd-funding”long before the tech boom gentrified these terms.

That “gene” for startups lives on in the city’s current generation of girls and teens of color and Latinitas’ 10th Startup Chica Conference

Austin’s official bilingual STEM nonprofit Latinitas announces the promotion of Vanessa Batz to the position of Communications Manager, a first time position at Latinitas. Majoring in public relations at Texas State University holding leadership positions in a few student organizations, Batz started at Latinitas working in programs using those skill sets to equip the next generation of digital producers to find their voice and amplify it through as many channels possible.

As a program leader at Club Latinitas and later during Camp Latinitas, Batz taught dozens of girls and teens how to do game design, publish a podcast and even…

20 years of missteps, negligence and tired excuses from Austin’s Women’ s Giving Circles

Together Junior League of Austin, Impact Austin and the Austin Community Foundation’s Women’s Fund contribute $1.5M annually to nonprofits making up a substantial part of the city’s philanthropic pie. But, even with Austin’s reputation as “progressive,” its exponential population growth that has attracted women of all backgrounds to live here or that 90 languages (!!!) are spoken in its public schools, the ethnic makeup of these organizations has barely budged from their original, homogenous and almost entirely White memberships. …

Laura Donnelly

is the Founder and CEO of Latinitas, Austin’s only 100% bilingual STEM education nonprofit, exclusively in underfunded schools serving over 35,000 since 2002.

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