RocGrowth Candids is committed to encouraging greater equality of race, class, age and gender in our community. Diversity results in better outcomes. I don’t need to start listing the research evidence proving it. As Americans, we know it viscerally, although it doesn’t always feel that way. It’s an essential ingredient to our exceptionalism.
That’s why we chose to feature the two founders of Chloe Capital, a group that is organizing and funding female innovators, at November’s RocGrowth Candids. As a venture capitalist for 15 years, I had the good fortune of funding female entrepreneurs. And, during the arc of my early career and until the present moment, I’ve witnessed the growing inclusiveness of women. It’s indisputable that better decisions and outcomes derive from having men and women in the equation.
I feel a moral sense of purpose around this issue. Title IX became law in 1972, 45 years ago. It imposed certain equality standards upon educational institutions by the federal government. It should be looked at as a complement to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. We now see how young girls and women have benefited from greater opportunities and are making an important, favorable impact on society.
I have a teenage son and daughter. There is no way I can tolerate my daughter lacking the same opportunities my son enjoys. A tail-end Baby Boomer, my sensibilities were forged by the women’s movement of the 1960s and 1970s. I attended great colleges and universities where I was exposed to exceptionally intelligent women. My career put me in front of remarkable female professionals who achieved great success, notwithstanding a tilted playing field.
Bottom line: If you don’t think of it in moral terms or don’t view this as an American issue, it’s in our self-interest to engage and empower half of our population. Human capital is the essential ingredient in the modern economy.
Richard Glaser is co-creator of RocGrowth and RocGrowth Candids and Coffee events. He was recently presented with Upstate Venture Connect’s Community Catalyst award for organizing programs that bring together diverse startup ecosystem players.