Birmingham and Montgomery communities have developed a partnership through which they aspire to elevate minority tech talent and entrepreneurs. This collaborative effort, entitled, The Alabama Collective, seeks to bring together a plethora of talented tech professionals and entrepreneurs to develop and expand the state’s emerging tech, innovation and entrepreneurial programs, while also preserving the existing infrastructure which has proven to be vital to the economic prosperity of the state.
The Alabama Collective is led by some of the state’s most dynamic leaders; Mayor Randall Woodfin of Birmingham and Mayor Steven Reed of Montgomery, alongside Tech Birmingham CEO Deon Gordon and TechMGM Executive Director Charisse Stokes. These change makers have been instrumental in the growth and development of the existing technical landscape and have collaborated diligently to stand up great initiatives like: Montgomery TechLab, Bronze Valley, Apple’s EdFarm and the Lab on Dexter, a newly developed social and tech innovation facility located on historic Dexter Avenue.



About the Alabama Collective

This collaborative endeavor welcomes professionals to participate in a series of community conversations to influence the development and growth of minority tech talent and entrepreneurs.
On Thursday, September 1st, at the Lab on Dexter in downtown Montgomery, we will hold the first event in our Fall 2022 community conversation series.  The Blacks in Tech and Innovation Roundtable event will kick off with Mayor Steven L. Reed of the City of Montgomery, followed by a Fireside Chat with Dr. Olivia Cook, the Director of the Center of Social Justice at Miles College and Delali Dzirasa, CEO and Founder of Fearless Tech. Waymond Jackson, CEO of EdFarm, will lead a panel discussion on Engaging HBCUs in Going Digital with Darryl Peek of Google, Anissa Lumpkin of the Air Force Research Laboratory, and Rep Anthony Daniels from the Alabama House of Representatives and Innovation Corporation Board. Vic Brown, IBM Federal’s Chief Information Officer, will present before we close with a panel on Emerging Technologies for the Minority Innovator. Dr. Kenley Obas, Professor of Applied Technology at Alabama State University will moderate the panel alongside Brig Gen (Retired) Greg Brundidge of Salesforce, Stacey Lusk from Microsoft and Brig Gen Marlon Crooks from the Air National Guard. This impressive lineup is sure to address a variety of topics integral to the development and growth of our talent base and ecosystem in the Montgomery area.


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October 6th
11:00 am - 2:00 pM

It’s ALL ACCESS @ The CLASSIC season and we’re following up our success during Montgomery’s HBCU Classic weekend with a brunch event in Birmingham on Thursday, October 6th. Join us at The Wine Loft at 11:00 AM to kickoff Tuskegee Morehouse Classic Weekend with a special session focused on Accelerators.

 Whether you’re a startup, established entrepreneur, tech professional, student or community advocate, this event is for you! We will explore the rise of accelerator programs across the state, access to capital for entrepreneurs and organizations as well as best practices to having a sustained and successful business. You’ll hear from program directors with various accelerator programs that are making an impact across the state of Alabama. This isn’t just a one sided view, you’ll also get to hear from Founders that have participated in these programs and get the low down on how these can truly advance and benefit your business and community.

Don’t miss out, this is sure to be another must attend event!


A community conversation



The Alabama Collective hosted a Black History Month event; Transcendence, on February 16th in Montgomery, AL, at The Lab on Dexter. Charisse Stokes and Dr. Nichole Thompson moderated an inspirational conversation on history, culture and innovation with Mayor Steven Reed of Montgomery, AL., Mayor Adrian Perkins of Shreveport, LA., and Mayor Chokwe Lumumba of Jackson, MS as panelists. The evening began with a moving performance by the Alabama State University Gospel Choir singing Stand Up and Lift Every Voice and Sing. Actress and educator Dr. Tonea ‘Tommie’ Stewart set the tone with a dramatic monologue chronicling progression and purpose throughout the South. The program also included remarks from several special guests within the Montgomery and Birmingham communities discussing the strength of our business and government partnerships in achieving success. The event concluded with the Bankhead Violinist performing Essence and Have Mercy. Transcendence was history, culture and innovation at its finest!

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Thank You Birmingham!

By 2026 our state is projected to need 850,000 STEM-related jobs. Thanks to the leadership of Mayor Woodfin and Mayor Reed, Birmingham and Montgomery will do their part to prepare the state of Alabama. Tech Birmingham and Tech MGM are working to elevate the conversation around Minority-talent, Tech, and Entrepreneurs. They will no longer operate in silos but do what is necessary to bridge gaps and forge partnerships that offer everyone a seat at the table! 

Thank you so much for joining us at our inaugural conversation. Please be on the lookout for upcoming events!

Check out the photo gallery; you may find yourself in the mix!

Remember the words of Shirley Chisholm,
“If they don’t give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair.”


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