Leadership can be a lonely place, especially for folks of color.
Ron Summers is the CEO of a non-profit focused on providing equitable access to careers in technology. He is a leader with a vision of guaranteeing every K-12 student access to computer science and computational thinking.
Ron has dedicated his life to advancing CS exposure, access, and inclusion for Black, brown, and female students and he shares his leadership experience, especially for people of color, and emphasizes the importance of self-care and authenticity as two main pillars of good leadership.
Ron's journey from web designer to CEO of a non-profit is filled with resilience and determination. Raised in Queens and Brooklyn within a family of educators, Ron's path was shaped by his desire to create, but he encountered very early with microaggressions, inequity, and being the only Black kid in the IT classroom.
Ron and Ron are discussing why adaptability, mindfulness, and holistic self-care are important for leadership roles. Why balance between entrepreneurship and family responsibility is the key to a good and healthy leader.
Good leaders are always the transformative power that makes this world a better place especially if it is rooted in authenticity and empathy for their community.
👦🏾 Black and proud: kid from Queens who grew up in Brooklyn within a family of teachers. 02:06
💻 Ron wanted to create websites: in a college, Ron was the only black young man and he experienced microaggression. 04:41
🤓 Getting a gig in IBM at 19: why Ron decided to become an educator. 06:59
🌞 Black kids lack opportunities: filling gaps and helping young black people get in tech and stay there. 09:48
💥 Creative people in Ron’s life and tech: ‘Artists are engineers’. 11:55
🔥 Starting as a substitute teacher in NYC: the important step before teaching is figuring out the rhythm for a classroom to make it work. 17:48
🏆 His circle of champions and influencers: every human requires accommodations. 20:13
✌🏾 Challenges and losses are needed for wins: taking losses to make the world a better place. 22:59
💪🏾 Being a Black leader and running non-profits: nothing is linear - keep fighting for kids to have a pathway of experiences. 29:22
😍 Having a supportive partner and help from a network of like-minded people: when we all win. 34:12
3️⃣ Three leadership lessons he learned: prioritize adaptability, being thoughtful and taking care of your self to care for others. 37:54
😎 Entrepreneur’s mindset, athlete's body, and an artist's soul: learning from Gen Z and showing up for yourself. 47:36
💎 Ron’s RONdering: listen to your body, mind, and soul while being in tech or building your own company. 49:13
⚠️ Sacrifice for your family: being a workaholic but be careful because it can take a toll. 51:34
⚡ Creating equitable access and implementing it. 54:34
Connect with Ron: www.codenation.org