ET# 121: Change

Equitech Community,

The pace of change in the world can be dizzying, and because so many challenges exist, it can often feel impossible to overcome them or meet them with an equal number of opportunities. Yet, at UpSurge, we seek to do just that.

- Kory Bailey, UpSurge Chief Ecosystem Officer

Having experienced the recent loss of life in our own community, we acknowledge the devastating events affecting millions of Israelis and Palestinians and the impact this ongoing conflict it is having on the many members of our community in Baltimore. I offer a prayer of safety for loved ones, healing for the innocent men, women and children affected by the violence, and love for all of those affected here and abroad.

We don’t have all the answers at UpSurge, but we do believe firmly that bringing people together across lines of gender, race, faith, nationality, ethnicity, and life experience is one way we build resilience and amplify the power of love in our community.

This week, Baltimoreans from across the country will return to the city for Baltimore Homecoming, take in its rich culture, hear from city and state leaders, and witness the Crab Tank Pitch competition where they will learn about some of our most promising new startups.

This weekend, the Maryland Tech ecosystem, which included our dear friend and Honorary Bid Team Member Pava LaPere, submitted our final proposal for the relocation of Black Tech Week. The effort to bring this annual conference to Baltimore has the full support of Maryland’s Governor, Baltimore’s Mayor, and other political leaders. Moreover, our corporate leaders, leaders of the tech ecosystem, and others in the region understand the impact that Black Tech Week will have on our communities are committed to its success. Brian Brackeen of Lightship Capital and one of the owners of the conference offered his enthusiasm for the proposal. “Please send our most heartfelt thanks to EVERYONE who worked on this. It’s a true state-wide effort.”

We are working for positive change in Baltimore.
Equitech is about how people of all backgrounds and culture influence innovation. How belonging in tech creates opportunity. UpSurge COO, Maddy Stokes believes, “Equitech culture is also about how we take care of ourselves and each other.” At UpSurge, we believe Equitech is the future of our city and we intend to be the change we want to see in the world.

Following the lead of the women in our community who have met for the past 2 weeks, any men who, like me, need a space for processing grief and healing, please let me know. I am organizing a small gathering on October 28th at 7pm where we can do that together. I will send details for how you can participate.
Sign up for the October 24th, UpRise MASTERCLASS: A Guide to Early-Stage Startup Funding – What’s Best for You? UpRise MASTERCLASS is a series of in-person learning opportunities open to the entire Equitech Community.

Anyone planning to attend AfroTech in Austin, TX, November 1-5, please reach out to Naomi Winston: We are organizing a call on Wednesday, October 25th at 8:30am to create awareness for who from Maryland is attending, where we can find each other, and what shared goals we can all work towards together while there.

Join us at Guilford Hall Brewery this Tuesday, 6-8pm as we partner with another change-making organization, Baltimore Digital Equity Coalition (BDEC), a group of over 50 organizations and individuals, committed to advancing digital equity and closing the digital divide in the city of Baltimore by providing access to devices, greater internet connectivity, and advocacy. We will be joined by Executive Director Cody Dorsey, Baltimore City Council President Nick Mosby, Councilman Robert Stokes, Delegate Jackie Addison, and Delegate Calvin Young.

See you all at Equitech Tuesday. Let’s support the important work being done by our friends at BDEC and be the change together!