Reshma Saujani, Girls Who Code founder and CEO, to open 2017 ALA Annual Conference

For Immediate Release
Thu, 02/16/2017


Amy McGuigan

Conference Manager

Conference Services

Since 2012, Girls Who Code has taught computing skills to and inspired more than10,000 girls across America--and they're just at the beginning of their mission to close the gender gap in tech. Reshma Saujani, the founder and CEO of the national non-profit organization, is also the author of the groundbreaking book Women Who Don't Wait In Line, in which she advocates for a new model of female leadership focused on embracing risk and failure, promoting mentorship and sponsorship, and boldly charting your own course. She will speak at the opening general session of the 2017 ALA Annual Conference and Exhibition on Friday, June 23, 4:00-5:15pm, at McCormick Place in Chicago.

Girls Who Code is growing fast, with a goal of reaching one million young women by 2020, by when 1.4 million jobs will be open in computing related fields in the US, of which we are only on pace to fill 29% with computing graduates, a mere 3% of whom are likely to be women. The organization has been featured in more than 100 publications and media outlets, from The New York Times to The Today Show, and has more than 105,000 Twitter followers. The forthcoming book Girls Who Code: Learn to Code and Change the World (August 2017, ages 10 and up), will show girls how coding skills are relevant to their lives and will get them excited about creating their own apps, games, and robots. With dynamic artwork, down-to-earth explanations of coding principles, and real-life stories of girls and women working at places like Pixar and NASA, it sets out to prove that coding is truly for everyone, no matter their interests. “The world is advancing in technology and women and girls need to educate ourselves on computer science to catch up. I don't know how to code but this book has inspired me to learn,” says Malala Yousafzai, Student, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Co-Founder of the Malala Fund. The Friendship Code, a fictional title, will be published by Penguin Young Readers at the same time as Girls Who Code.

Saujani has been named one of Fortune's 40 under 40, a WSJ Magazine Innovator of the Year, one of the 50 Most Powerful Women in New York by the New York Daily NewsForbes's Most Powerful Women Changing the World, Business Insider's 50 Women Who Are Changing the World, and an AOL/PBS Next MAKER. Her appearance at the conference is sponsored by Penguin Young Readers.

The best earlybird registration rates are available through March 22, 2017. If you need help in making your case to attend, these resources can help.

Ways to stay in touch and get updates include: Annual Conference website; Twitter (@alaac and #alaac17), Facebook Event, Pinterest, Tumblr, Instagram (#alaac17).

ALA Annual Conference—Transforming Our Libraries, Ourselves