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Black Girls Code founder turns down ‘tone-deaf’ $125,000 grant from Uber

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After former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick joined #45’s advisory council, and engineer Susan Fowler alleged sexual harassment and a culture of misconduct at the company, the ride-share service faced a P.R. nightmare that they have since been eager to clean up. First, they hired a Black woman, Bozoma Saint John, as chief brand officer. Then they replaced Kalanick with an anti-Trump CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi. Now, they are putting money into tech organizations centering on women—but for one of those organizations, Black Girls Code, it’s too little to late.

When Uber offered $125,000 last week, the pioneer for diversity in STEM fields turned it down.

“My decision is layered,” Black Girls Code founder Kimberly Bryant told TechCrunch. “I’ve been quite open for some time about the fact that we as an org use Uber as a tool. We’re also headquartered in the city [Oakland] where they have planned to move. So I’ve been open to the notion that they can transform themselves. Yet their past history and ‘political’ nature of maneuvering is and was troubling…


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