Forging new pathways in tech
NOLAvate Black is a New Orleans tech collective dedicated to improving racial equity and inclusion in the tech industry. Their aim? To create accessible pathways into the sector for the Black community. Founded in 2018 by Sabrina Short, NOLAvate Black is committed to driving advocacy, education, and community.
Beyond providing avenues into technology, the organization is on a mission to bring people together. Their annual Black Tech NOLA Inclusive Innovation Conference serves to connect people for a meaningful shared experience.
Ordinarily held in person in vibrant New Orleans Black Tech NOLA has experienced impressive growth since its first edition in 2018. NOLAvate Black welcomed 200 attendees that year, then 400 in 2019. Sabrina predicted an even bigger turnout in 2020. Then, the pandemic hit. For the conference to survive, Sabrina needed a virtual events platform that could provide attendees with the same incredible experience they’d come to expect from the in-person event.
That's when she found Hopin.
"Hopin's customer service team was stellar. They responded quickly, they answered our questions, and they met with us whenever we needed. So early on, I was looking for not just a high tech platform, but I was looking for a high touch platform, and Hopin allowed us to really feel like we were an organization that they invested in and wanted us to be successful." –Sabrina Short, Founder and CEO, NOLAvate Black
Beyond Hopin's extensive customer support, Sabrina loved that she could fully customize the event platform to feature Black Tech NOLA's branding in an authentic way. Other key selling points included the ability to run multiple stages simultaneously and the ability to successfully replicate the buzz of a physical expo area.
Black Tech NOLA features sponsors that champion the importance of DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion), including Microsoft, Entergy, T-Mobile, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. With Hopin, these sponsors had new opportunities to connect with attendees online via breakout sessions, virtual expo booths, and content on the main stage.