Calling all tech entrepreneurs!

Are you a tech entrepreneur? Did you know Barbie will be one very soon

This week, three of Brisbane’s most inspiring tech entrepreneurs gathered for the first Microsoft/Tech Girls Movement co-hosted event. #techgirls Petrina Buckley, Danielle Neale and Emma Hossack shared their tips and hints for taking your startup to the next level.

Discussions focused around funding, scaleability and building your personal brand and image.

Some interesting questions posed to the panel included

  • “Are we born to be an entrepreneur or is this something we can learn?”
  • “How do we move our start up to the next level?”
  • “Can we measure Return on Investment ROI of our own efforts and time? How do we do this?”
  • “How can we build a great team around us?”
  • “Is networking key to building your own personal brand alongside the professional brand?”

Three key characteristics of being a tech entrepreneur were identified by the panel as “being authentic”, “having confidence in yourself and your product” and “creating value”.

I learnt that a start up is a company in the pursuit of a sustainable business model, differentiated by a company who is testing and using a sustainable business model.

A key piece of advice was to consider what you want the end to look like. How would you like to spend your days when you get to the point of “success”?

Lots of discussion about viability, flexibility, capacity, creativity….many new ideas, and some attending commented they are now considering a tech startup!

An inspiring night all around. Thanks to the Microsoft Innovation Centre (MIC) and in particular Luke Swetman in Brisbane for hosting this great joint event with the Tech Girls Movement!

Female entrepreneurs note – the MIC is free for you to use! Contact them today.

I’m so very humbled to be named the Australian Information Industries Association ICT Woman of the Year. Thank you all for your support. This is a win for all of us! 🙂

I am also very proud to share it with the talented Brynlea from St Aidan’s who I met at last years Young ICT Explorers Awards, and Darcelle Hinze and Belinda Rex (a joint nomination with fellow group members Chelsea McGuiness and Ashley Burns) for their Kidz@GCU Mobile App. The app was developed as part of their third year project at my Alumni Griffith University. The fabulous #techgirls showed off their software at the Tech Girls Are Superheroes launch in Brisbane in March – I’m really proud of them! Their project won the inaugural Opmantek Award last year and gave the group significant exposure

Thank you Desiree Kelly aka Dreamstar from Team QUT for the nomination and to Dr Sue Nielsen, the story director, for the brilliant reference!

Check out the other winners here.

Wish me luck at the National awards on the 29th of August! 🙂

It was a Thursday evening the room was full of superpowers. Those 100 or so people in the Sydney IT industry were ready to be creative and have some giggles at 99 on York in Sydney on this very warm May evening. 

The event was proudly hosted by the Australian Computer Society NSW and Salamat as well as the other generous sponsor to date, spearheaded by Kathy Egea, Helen McHugh and Maria Hugo (thank you ladies!). Time to get “happy” – we had a flash mob!

Greeted by Jewella, the creator of the inspiring book Tech Girls Are Superheroes, Jenine Beekhuyzen, gave an overview of the Tech Girls Movement and the book progress to date. Also in residence was Dan Heck, the highly talented illustrator who had fun photo boothing with the IT professionals – who were reading their free copy of the book for the first time.

Nur Oyman and Maria Hugo were inspiring in their stories as Tech Girls, showing that the challenges are worthwhile. They gave the audience a lot to consider when they were faced with revealing their superpower.

We grooved to Sun Comes Out Twice At Night – thanks Jules & Claud for letting us enjoy your fantastic tunes for the night !

Time to create our superhero masks!

We had a fun mask making activity using the talents of Theresa Anderson and Kathy Egea from UTS. Then time to photobooth themselves! So much fun 🙂

Can you spot the Tech Girl Superhero from the book in the above pics?

Happy #IWD14! Saturday night was a blast!

Thank you to everyone who came along to celebrate the launch of the Tech Girls Movement and the new book Tech Girls Are Superheroes. 

I’m sure you will agree the entertainment was great – Taiko drums, a funky choir (Redland Rhapsody Chorus) and talented Bollywood dancers (Dance Masala) kept us all grooving!

Many of the #techgirls profiled in the book attended the launch. They had so much fun signing books and meeting Dan – the animator who did such a great job in creating a visual of their superhero alter-ego. Can’t thank you all enough for being part of this.

The photobooth was a huge hit! You can see the fun pics here. Congrats to Women in Tech at QUT for getting the most #techgirl superheroes into a photobooth at once!

Dianne Jeans, the Assistant Director-General for the Department of Science, Information Technology, Innovation & the Arts has officially supported the launch, her comments:

It was pleasure on Saturday night to attend the launch of the Tech Girls Are Superheroes program. I hold a senior role in the information and communication technology (ICT) environment of Government and fully appreciate the many challenges the Tech Girls Movement is looking at. It was fitting that the program was launched on International Women’s Day, an annual event that started in 1911 to campaign for women’s rights to work, to vote, to be educated and trained, to hold public office and to end discrimination. 

Today, there are more women in the boardroom, greater equality in legislative rights, and women are visible as impressive role models in every aspect of life. Great improvements have been made in all fields. We have female astronauts and prime ministers, girls are welcomed into all courses at university, women can work and have a family, women today have real choices.  Despite these roles models and open access to opportunities, here in Queensland women are still unlikely, in the main, to pursue a career in science, engineering or technology fields, they are still a minority across all levels in these disciplines and are not well-represented at the most senior levels.With an economy that is becoming increasingly more reliant on knowledge and digital technologies, and a world that is becoming connected in every sense – we need women’s contribution to all aspects of our future.  

I congratulate Jenine and her Tech Girls Movement team for this and encourage them in their quest to support the development of a more diverse IT workforce that includes a significant representation of women. Programs such as these, led by women who are passionate about their industry’s future, will assure that the future for girls will be bright, equal, safe and rewarding“.

I’d like to give special thanks to Sharon Schoenborn from Microsoft who nominated the Tech Girls Movement as her charity for the funds raised at the Australian Institute of Management #IWD14 luncheon on the 7th March. So excited that she also led the winning team in the debate with her excellent discussion about whether to “lean in” or not (in reference to the Sheryl Sandberg book). Your confidence in this cause inspires me 🙂

Bruce Lee (if that is not a superhero name then what is?) – a long time colleague commented: 

The launch was fantastic. There was one stage where there was so much going on to see with the graphics, entertainment, decorations, great venue etc, there was the sound of drumming and music, and the aroma and spectacle of the excellent food, the book to explore – fantastic atmosphere and lots of interesting people. For a while I just stood back and enjoyed taking it all in. Well done to you and congrats to all involved. It even had real life super-heroes!

All of this could not have happened without the generous support of sponsors. I once again want to greatly thank the sponsors: Deakin University, QUT, IBM, Thoughtworks, Curtin University, Microsoft, Commonwealth Bank, Griffith University, Australian Computer Society, Idealaw, Bioproton, State Library Qld, and Hootsuite.

Congrats also to Jesse Irwin for winning the lucky door prize at the launch – the fitbit donated by Bioproton.

Now it is time to start promoting the book, so please encourage all of the school girls you know to jump online and order a copy of their book. Jewella and the #techgirls will also be making school visits so keep that in mind. You will be able to book soon via the website. 

Thank you! 🙂

Jewella aka Jenine – a proud Tech Girl Superhero!

Tickets available here @ $20 each ($15 for students) – Thanks to the sponsor who kindly subsidised tickets! This gives more people a chance to be one of the first to get their hands on the new Tech Girls Are Superheroes book!

UPDATE on the festivities! 28.2.14

Arrive at the River Terrace room at the State Library Qld at Southbank and be greeted by the Taiko drums from 5:30pm for a 6pm start. 

We have some formalities from 6:00-6:45 which include an official launch by Dianne Jeans, the Assistant Director-General of Shared Corporate Services Division, Department of Science, Information Technology, Innovation & the Arts, a few words from our sponsors including some inspiring words from Microsoft’s 2013 Leader of the Year.  We also have a story reading by the very talented Tricia Massy (the book editor).

After this, we will enjoy great food and drinks with an opportunity to network with others in the industry. There will be dancers and singers, book signings, competitions and of course, your chance to meet the Tech Girl Superheroes in person!  Also the goodie bag is awesome with your free copy of the book! Come celebrate with us! 🙂


Come celebrate International Womens Day on Saturday evening, the 8th March 2014 at the State Library Queensland. Not only will you be the first to get your hands on the fabulous new book Tech Girls Are Superheroes, you can enjoy some dinner and drinks, our superhero yourself photobooth, a goodies bag, fantastic networking and surprise performances that will be lots of fun! Bring your friends to celebrate not only a great cause, but a great night for the IT industry in Australia. 


The new Tech Girls Movement website is here! You will find all you need to know about TGM’s mission and our activities for 2014.

In late 2013, the Tech Girls Movement was born. Set up as a non-profit company, it’s main aim is to raise awareness of information technology careers and the need for greater diversity in the information technology workforce. The Tech Girls Movement provides a sisterhood for girls to join, empowering them to create their own future in the technology industry. Activities include creating female #TechGirls characters (archetypes) to promote in the media, having a strong online social media presence, producing and distributing a hard copy and e-book, an app, mobile games, an online weekly radio tech show,  school visits across Australia and more.

In 2014, the Tech Girls Movement revolves around the new book in the Tech Girls series, Tech Girls Are Superheroes. The book builds upon the success of Tech Girls Are Chic! (circa 2008) to present the opportunities and possibilities in the information technology industry through storytelling. The book showcases 26 women working in technology industries around the world, with a strong Australian focus. These role models have fun and girl-friendly animations in the book, and all authors have developed a science fiction story where they present themselves as a positive female tech superhero – 19 stories in total (incl. two teams). The book encourages reading in the 10-16 age group and shows school girls, their parents, teachers, and careers counsellors that it is acceptable and even advantageous to pursue a career in tech. 

The Tech Girls Movement is unique in that it is an ongoing campaign building partnerships across industry, government and education. The Tech Girl Superheroes in the book are strong and capable role models who are advocates for change; that change being getting more girls into tech study and careers. The TGM is also unique in that it incorporates a strong marketing campaign to dispel the myths of the information technology industry. The innovation is in using a relatable and fun theme of female “superheroes” to inspire. The TGM builds upon the academic research and translates it into practical programs and media campaigns to facilitate a change in culture.