It was an exciting year for tech in Silicon Valley, so we’ve decided to highlight a few women who we think have had particularly awesome achievements.
They have created interesting startups, snagged new positions at great companies, and have had major milestones at their own.
Aarthi Ramamurthy is one of the most notable female entrepreneurs out there today. She spent six years at Microsoft working on its popular Visual Studio software development tool and on Xbox Live.
Before founding Y Combinator-backed Lumoid, a startup for letting people test-drive electronics before buying them, she co-founded a bra-fitting company called True&Co.
Co-founder and marketing, Watsi
This year, Watsi became the first charitable company to raise over $US1 million in funding from traditional angel investors in Silicon Valley.
It is also the first Y-Combinator company to nab investor Paul Graham for its board of directors. Watsi allows anyone to give as little as $US5 to fund someone's medical care, and 100% of the money is donated. The mission of this startup is so beautiful, you just have to root for its success.
Before joining Watsi, Garey did refugee research in Ghana, worked at a hospital in India, and did humanitarian advocacy in D.C.
Director of product management, Yahoo
Erin Teague worked as the growth product manager for the mobile-only social network Path for two years and is responsible for the company's astounding user growth in 2013. In the spring, the app was growing by 1 million new users per week. It hit the 10-million-user mark in April. She worked on the product team at Twitter for two years before joining the Path team.
Last fall, she joined Yahoo as a director of product management.
Ramona Pierson has survived worse things than most people can imagine. In 1984, she was hit by a drunk driver and lapsed into a coma that lasted 18 months. After recovering, Pierson eventually launched her first startup, SynapticMash, an education software company that sold to Promethean World for $US10 million in 2010.
Now, Pierson is running social learning startup Declara. The aim is to help people sift through tons of content when they're not exactly sure what they're looking for. Last September, Declara raised a $US5 million seed round from Founders Fund, Peter Thiel and Data Collective.
Co-founder and CEO, HandUp
HandUp is proof that the tech industry does care about the homeless. Rose Broome and her co-founder Zac Witte launched their crowdfunding platform for the homeless back in August.
In its pilot stage, there are about 100 homeless people who receive cash donations via text or email. Within the last couple of months, the pair landed a seed investment from serial entrepreneur and angel investor Jason Calacanis. To date, HandUp has raised $US200,000.
HandUp is also part of startup accelerator Tumml, which gives entrepreneurs $US20,000 to help them solve urban issues.
Founder, (unnamed stealth startup)
The co-founder and former CEO of VMware, Diane Greene has something new up her sleeve this year that looks like it will challenge the company that ousted her in 2008.
Greene's stealth startup is focused on virtual storage and will target cloud and service providers as customers. So far, we've heard it's lured at least three VMware employees away from their jobs.
She also just finished her first year on Google's board of directors.
Brit Morin, widely referred to as the Martha Stewart of Silicon Valley, raised $US6.3 million last year from prominent Silicon Valley elites like Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, Index Ventures, Lerer Ventures, Cowboy Ventures, and Aileen Lee and Oak Investment Partners, for her domestic lifestyle brand Brit & Co. As part of the investment, Tina Sharkey and Oak Investment Partners' Fred Harman joined the board of directors.
That's a huge win for Morin given that Harman coached Arianna Huffington and Bleacher Report to exits worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
When Meg Whitman joined HP in 2011, she only earned a salary of $US1 a year because the company was really struggling.
But now that she's been able to turn the company around, HP directors say she deserves $US1.5 million. Under Whitman's leadership, HP's stock has rebounded back to the near-$30 mark from before she first started. Whitman has also since distanced herself from Microsoft and Windows 8, showing a preference toward Chromebooks.
Co-founding partner, Floodgate
As co-founding managing partner at venture capital firm Floodgate, Ann Miura-Ko has led seed investments in TaskRabbit, Lyft, Modcloth, Refinery29, Boxbee and NewsCred.
She also lectures at Stanford University, where she recently started a new class to teach highly technical graduate students how to be successful entrepreneurs in the field of big data.
Two of her portfolio companies, Lyft and Refinery29, both had years of note. Refinery29 raised a total of $US25 million last year, and Lyft raised a total of $US75 million.
Co-founder and chief strategy officer; co-founder and chief of merchandising, One Kings Lane
The home decor site One Kings Lane raised a huge round of funding -- $US112 million to be exact -- last month, bringing its valuation to nearly $US1 billion. The company has also made some recent strategic hires, bringing former Zappos CTO Arun Rajan onboard to lead its technology initiatives.
The company plans to use the funding to hire, expand its technology, and build out its inventory. To date, the company has raised $US229 million.
Head of retail; head of human resources, Apple
In October 2013, Apple announced the hiring of former Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts as the company's new head of retail.
Then, in February 2014, Apple appointed Denise Young Smith to lead its worldwide human resources division. They are in charge of the future of two of Apple's most important assets: its chain of stores and its talent.
(It's also great to see Apple shaking up its previously male-dominated top ranks.)
When Google Maps and commerce boss Jeff Huber stepped down in March, longtime Google executive Susan Wojcicki took over commerce. At the same time, she was also running Google's ad business, overseeing Payments, Wallet, Offers, Shopping, Local Search, Maps & Earth and Travel.
And, just this month, we got some more huge news about Wojcicki: She was tapped to become head of YouTube. By appointing Wojcicki as the new YouTube CEO, Google could be hinting that it's interested in revamping the video platform's advertising business.
Marissa Mayer was known for her poise as a leader at Google and is now remaking Yahoo as its CEO. As such, she has been on a hiring spree.
Just last month, Mayer unveiled two new products to Yahoo's lineup: mobile app News Digest and a new digital magazine focused on tech, which is headed up by former New York Times reporter David Pogue.
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