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William Adams

“Technology Advisor to the CTO at a global corp, diversity innovator, & coder. Let’s talk leadership, careers, programming, & Blacks in tech.”


About Me

I’m an award-winning D&I innovator, engineering trailblazer, and philanthropist. After rolling out critical XML code globally in many of Microsoft's core products, I was named the first Technical Advisor to the CTO, Kevin Scott.

As co-founder of the LEAP apprenticeship program – named Microsoft’s D&I Program of the Year in 2020 – I helped launch the training of more than 26 engineering cohorts around the world. Today, 98% of LEAP participants have jobs in Microsoft or other high-tech companies. My most recent collaboration is with the leadership of the U.S. Virgin Islands to establish and train a technical talent pool and build critical technology infrastructure.

Early in my 30-year career in software engineering, I was one of the first Black entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley and was recently profiled by the Computer History Museum. Through my company, Adamation, I developed mission-critical custom enterprise apps for Steve Jobs' NeXT computers and pioneered a network instant messaging service purchased by the CIA. I’ve been awarded two patents.

Today, in addition to my role at Microsoft, I’m the philanthropic founder of The EV3NT, a collaborative, community-based hackathon designed to use technology to address critical needs for people of color. When I’m not tinkering with bits and bytes, I’m busy as a husband and father of three. I build kitchen cabinets, knit, and try to recapture the exhilaration of riding a motorcycle in India.

Sample Topics

  • How to create tech inclusion initiatives that pay off for the company and the world
  • How to use tech to create economic opportunity, empowerment, and prosperity in communities of color
  • How to be an intrapreneur inside a global company

Sample Questions

  1. What is the most effective thing corporations can do to hire more people of color?
  2. What is the most difficult part of implementing DEI programs?
  3. What’s one piece of practical advice you’d give to a person of color just getting started in technology?
  4. Why isn’t it enough to hire people of color into technology jobs?
  5. Why is it important for people of color to have an ownership stake in technology development?
  6. What’s one good step an entrepreneur of color can take to get started?
  7. What is The EV3NT and why is it important for communities of color?
  8. What prompted you to start The EV3NT? Why now?
  9. What has helped you become an intrapreneur and what advice would you have for others who want to carve their own path in a corporation?

Recent Podcast Appearances

“Let’s give folks an equity stake in the technology. Together we can build tequity.”

Twitter: @LeapToTech

LinkedIn: thewilliamaadams

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