We held our 2nd annual Champions of Change Awards this past Thursday evening at City Hall. The sold-out event celebrated 35 individuals who are making Austin a truly inclusive community. Speakers included Mayor Steve Adler, Indeed CEO Chris Hyams, and President and CEO of Huston-Tillotson University Dr. Colette Pierce Burnette.
A selection committee, made up of local business leaders and influencers, selected winners for seven categories. The honorees include:
Executive of the Year
Christopher Kennedy, Leadership Austin
DEI Leader of the Year
Dr. Kazique Prince, City of Austin
Investor of the Year
Zoe Schlag and Amos Schwartzfarb, Techstars
Rising Star of the Year
Lakeya Omagu, University of Texas
Student of the Year
Nonprofit Leader of the Year
Matt Stephenson, Code2College
Champion of the Year
Janice Omadeke, The Mentor Method
Roman Gonzalez, Gardenio
Proceeds from the event will go directly to support the mission of DivInc (501c3) – to bridge the gap between underrepresented entrepreneurs and the resources they need to build profitable, high-growth companies.
“The Champions of Change is extremely important because it brings the Austin community together to celebrate individuals that are affecting positive change in the form of diversity, equity and inclusion,” said Preston James, co-founder and CEO of DivInc. “As Austin grows quickly, a focus on diversity and inclusion is needed now more than ever. Champions of Change exists to honor the unsung heroes who work tirelessly and passionately to promote this mission day-in and day-out.”
The 2020 Champions of Change Selection Committee consisted of: Dana Callender, Rubén Cantú, Clarissa Fuselier, Lisa Graham, Josh Jones-Dillworth, Naji H. Kelley, Hugh Forrest, Lisa Graham, Mindy Gulati, Christine McCarey, Chas Moore, Janice Omadeke, Colette Pierce-Burnette, Eugene Sepulveda and Leslie Wingo.
Champions of Change sponsors included: Wild Basin Investments LLC, Silicon Labs, Cushman & Wakefield, Vela Wood, Downtown Austin Alliance, Capital City Innovation, Cirrus Logic, NFP and Jackson Walker.
Champions of Change Community Partners included: Huston Tillotson University, BLNDED Media, The University of Texas at Austin Inclusive Innovation & Entrepreneurship, Notley Ventures and Capital Factory.
***B-roll and interviews available here***
***Photography available upon request***
Want to learn more about DivInc? Please visit: https://www.divinc.org/about
To see more pictures from the event visit https://jerrelltrulove.shootproof.com/gallery/champions/home
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