Introducing the Code for America 2024 Summit Content Committee

Summit is one of the most diverse and intentional events for the civic tech community each year—let’s meet the people who help make it happen

This is one of the most energizing times of the year at Code for America— when we really start gearing up for our annual Summit. Civic tech’s most connective event is even more necessary in the era of remote work. Summit is where we bump into longtime colleagues we’ve missed, where we finally meet that thought leader whose work we’ve been following, and where we spark connections with new acquaintances tackling the same challenges. All of them remind us that there are so many people working alongside us every day in pursuit of a government that works better for everyone. 

We’re so excited to welcome our community back to Summit in Oakland, CA from May 29–30, 2024. There are so many ways to connect to our Summit community and content this year, whether through webinars leading up to and after Summit, professional development workshops held on May 28, or attending lightning talks and breakout sessions during the main event. This year, we’ll have four tracks for breakout sessions: Service Design + Delivery, Policy + Administration, People Power + Community, and Emerging Technology + Innovation. That last one is new, and speaks to our Summit theme: Building a new digital age that works for all. 

But where does that work begin? How can we bake inclusion into every decision we make in the new digital age? One of the ways we do that for Summit is through our stellar content committee, which represents government workers at all levels, Code for America staff, and folks from civic tech organizations working in every corner of the sector. Each of them brings their own distinct perspective and lived experience. They come together to nerd out over hundreds of proposals from people passionate about making government work well in the new digital age. By dedicating an enormous amount of time to weighing each proposal, they help us develop a balanced program of offerings and ensure that equity is paramount in all of our content decisions. 

Meet the content committee

  • Bryanna Pardoe, Executive Director, CODE PA for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
  • Eduardo Ortiz, CEO, Coforma
  • Felix Gilbert, President, XCell
  • Kai D. Feder, Chief of Staff, New Jersey State Office of Innovation
  • Kisha Bwenge, Former Senior Community Building Manager, Open Contracting Partnership
  • Content Chair: Marlena Medford, Senior Director of Strategic Communications, Code for America
  • Marni Wilhite, Digital Services Expert, U.S. Digital Services
  • Meilani Santillán, Program Director for Criminal Justice, Code for America
  • Rebecca Heywood, Governments Lead, U.S. Digital Response
  • Reilly Martin, Executive Director, Technologists for the Public Good
  • Ruthie Reisner, Associate Director of Content Development, Code for America
  • Sara Hall, Director of Digital Services, City of Philadelphia
  • Tegan Glasheen, Group Program Manager, County of San Diego

The Content Committee read through more than 300 compelling content ideas submitted during our annual Call for Proposals. They evaluated all of them to see how well they fit the 2024 Summit theme and did the hard work of narrowing down selections to make for the best Summit experience possible. We are so grateful to the members of this committee who have dedicated their time to envisioning the most inclusive Summit they could—and we’re also grateful to everyone who submitted an idea, even if it wasn’t selected. The sheer volume of interest shows that this community is enthusiastic about tackling our hardest challenges, which is exactly the energy we need to meet the current moment. 

Demographic statistics

At Code for America, we believe that the best events are those that represent a broad diversity of perspectives, honoring a wealth of lived experiences and paths to this work. That’s what makes for a truly inclusive and welcoming experience. We know the work on this starts at home, with data to keep us accountable. To that end, we’re sharing the statistics of who makes up our content committee, and the demographics of those who are presenting lightning talks or breakout sessions.

Content committee 

  • Race/ethnicity 
    • 46.2% identify as BIPOC
    • 5I 3.8% identify as white
  • Gender
    • 69.2% identify as women
    • 30.8% identify as men

Selected lightning talk presenters

  • Race/ethnicity 
    • 28.5% identify as BIPOC 
    • 21.4% identify as Asian 
    • 7.1% identify as Black or African American 
    • 57.1% identify as white 
    • 14.3% other / prefer not to answer
  • Gender
    • 50% identify as women 
    • 42.9% identify as men 
    • 7.1% prefer not to say 

Selected breakout session presenters

  • Race/ethnicity 
    • 36% identify as BIPOC 
    • 14.1% identify as Asian 
    • 3.9% identify as Black or African American 
    • 9% identify as Hispanic or Latinx
    • 9% identify as two or more races
    • 53.8% identify as white 
    • 10.3% other / prefer not to answer
  • Gender
    • 66.7% identify as women 
    • 25.6% identify as men 
    • 2.6% identify as nonbinary
    • 5.1% prefer not to say 

Keep an eye on our blog in the months leading up to Summit as we share more about our speakers, breakout session tracks, and workshops. We’re excited to welcome you to convene, collaborate, and learn with us at the most exciting civic tech event of the year. 

Want to see what our content committee has been hard at work on? Join us in Oakland, CA from May 29-30, 2024. Tickets for Summit are on sale February 26. Get your ticket today

Can’t make Summit in person? We’ll be hosting a series of webinars in the lead up to Summit, and to share more insights in webinars after. Visit our Summit site to learn more.

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