Where are the women in the Web? In April 2007, Jeffrey Zeldman bemoaned the lack of women in the IT force, the lack of women speakers at conferences (including his own An Event Apart), and the lack of any information at all on the Web design industry. But, over four days through simple keyword searches and through reading blogs and other resources, we discovered at least one hundred women in SEO (Search Engine Optimization), SEM (Search Engine Marketing), public relations and marketing, design, business, social media and in IT. All these women have one thing in common – their work revolves around the Web.
The sum total of the Web women listed here represents just the tip of the iceberg on women involved with Web matters – although we agree with Zeldman that men seem to outnumber the women in this realm. With that said, the women we discovered are strong, talented, innovative and resourceful. And, many of them have joined forces to help each other and many other women. Since we restricted the list only to those women who maintain active blogs, we had to ignore such greats as Lynda Weinman,Rachel Andrew and Sas Jacobs. But, along the way, we discovered new resources and talents.
Table of Contents
Women In Search
The same month and year that Zeldman wondered about women in the Web, Danny Sullivan wondered if SEM was no longer a boy’s club. Sullivan was looking at conferences, though, and a large number of women in SEO and SEM don’t attend conferences for various reasons. Even so, if the numbers that Sullivan quoted are growing, you can then imagine what’s going on outside conference doors. We simply chose nineteen women in this category, and we had to stop at that number so we could make room for other categories. If you travel to other links within the descriptions, you’ll find many more women involved in SEO and SEM.
- Ask Kalena: Kalena Jordan represents one of the first search engine optimization experts in Australia and New Zealand, and now she’s well known and respected worldwide for her search engine knowledge. She created the SEO company, Web Rank (now Jordan Consulting Group), in 1999, and remains its CEO. She also is co-founder and director of studies for Search Engine College, an online training institute that offers instructor-led short courses and downloadable self-study courses in SEO and Search Engine Marketing. She also is author of the Search Light newsletter and used to moderate the Search Engine Watch forums. “Ask Kalena” is a blog with attitude that focuses on search issues.
- Bizresearch: Laura M.Thieme founded this company in 1997, a business that provides SEO, paid search (CPC / PPC) campaign management, full-service search engine marketing services including website traffic analysis for retailers, law firms and Fortune 500 companies throughout the U.S., the U.K. and Canada. She is a frequent speaker at international search engine strategy conferences, and she is an expert witness in a case involving trademark and metatag concerns. Additionally, Bizresearch and a team of programming experts have developed a sophisticated analysis software program that enables clients to monitor their Web marketing process in real time. Her patent for Bizwatch(TM) was published and pending as of 2007. She posts about search themes in her blog, but she also entertains guest bloggers who write about their pets, their projects and pet projects.
- Blogs and Feeds : Amanda G. Watlington, Ph.D. is the owner of Searching for Profit, a search marketing consultancy focusing on the interaction of the consumer with businesses using search engines, RSS, blogs, podcasting or other new media to deliver their messages. She is a frequent speaker at Search Engine Strategies, WebmasterWorld and other industry conferences. She’s the author of three books and has written dozens of feature articles for over thirty magazines and journals. She has twenty years of experience as a communications, sales and business strategy consultant, and over ten years as a search marketer (since 1995). Finally, Amanda serves as Search Engine Watch‘s multimedia, podcasting, and social search correspondent.
- Bruce Clay – Friday Recap: Commonly known throughout the blogosphere as “The Lisa,” Lisa Barone serves as senior writer for Bruce Clay, Inc., a leading provider of search engine marketing services with emphasis on search engine optimization. Before Lisa came on board at Bruce Clay, she was the Web editor of a “five-man/four-dog online vinyl record operation.” She hounded Bruce for employment at Bruce Clay in 2006, and it didn’t take long for her blogs – specifically her “Friday Recap” – to become a hit. For that particular column, Lisa scours the Web for interesting topics and writes how this news may affect search – but she does so in a gossipy style that is scary, yet entertaining and always informative. Additionally, Lisa is responsible for internal projects and edits at Bruce Clay. She works alongside senior editor Susan Esparza.
- Cre8pc: Kim Krause Berg is owner of this site, which launched as the Cre8pc Web Promotion Club at Yahoo! Clubs (now known as Yahoo! Groups) in September 1998. She keeps the general public updated about her work and forum efforts in this blog. It was in the forum that Kim met Carol Daly of CreativeThought.com. Carol, being of the business persuasion, and Kim, who leaned toward Web design and search engine optimization, joined forces to build a community interested in building online businesses that are user-centered and search-engine friendly. This forum is the third incarnation of what was once known as the “Cre8pc Web Promotion Club,” and it is now known as “Cre8tive Flow.” Interest and membership from several well-known figures in the search engine optimization industry inspired the group to move into a full-fledged forum. Assisted by Elizabeth Able and Joe Dolson, the new Cre8asiteForums were launched August 30, 2002. According to the site, “We eat SEO gossip for breakfast, are obsessed with usability design issues, are passionate about web site business and are always learning new web design techniques.”
- DazzlinDonna: Donna Fontenot creates Web sites for “fun and profit,” but she also teaches others about SEO as a “means of giving back” to the Web community. Her blog lands somewhere between the two realms, but it mainly focuses on how to make a living online, at home, with a few home-related issues thrown into the mix. She’s the owner of SEO Scoop, a staff columnist for Personal Branding Magazine and she’s a moderator at Cre8asite Forums (see #5)
- High Rankings: Jill Whalen had been in the search engine optimization field since the early 1990s, and she founded High Rankings five years later. Since then, High Rankings has grown to be one of the top SEO companies in the U.S., working with clients in more than forty industries to enhance their online presence through search engine strategies. Jill also is the founder of the popular High Rankings Search Engine Optimization Forum, now celebrating its fourth year. She hosts the High Rankings Advisor, a free search engine marketing email newsletter, and is the author of The Nitty-gritty of Writing for the Search Engines. Regularly quoted in national and industry publications, Jill is frequently called upon to speak at conferences worldwide. She also leads the High Rankings SEO Training Classes in which attendees gain a soup-to-nuts perspective of how to maximize SEO for their organizations. In 2006, Jill co-founded Search Engine Marketing Network for New England (SEMNE), a regional organization that enables companies and individuals interested in search marketing to meet every other month to exchange ideas, learn new tactics and network.
- In Search of Stuff: Scottie Claiborne is a woman with a man’s name from Right Click Web Consulting, the facilitator of the Successful Sites Newsletter. a speaker at the Search Engine Strategies conferences and the High Rankings (see #7) Seminars as well as the administrator of the High Rankings Forum. She joined forces with Michael Motherwell (“He is the boy with the girl’s hairc’t” – and Senior Search Consultant at WMS Consulting) to create one of the funniest search sites around. Searches, after all, are way too serious, so Claiborne and Motherwell created a blog about people “In Search of Stuff” with a twist. You can’t take them seriously. Or, can you? After writing thousands of link baits, you might find their sense of humor somewhat sympathetic.
- Men of SEO: Don’t let the name of this blog fool you. It’s written by a woman who previously was known only as “SEO Fan Girl.” It wasn’t until the Chicago SES (Search Engine Strategies) that her true identity was revealed as Ylayn Merideth (Y.M.) Ousley, owner of the Internet marketing company, Exponetial , which has offices in both the U.S. and France. She also contributes to Search Marketing Gurus (see #12).
- Researchbuzz : This link leads to Tara Calishain’s blog on news about search engines, databases, and online information collections that has been active since 1998. The real question that Tara answers is, “Would a reference librarian find it useful?” If the answer is yes, Tara adds it to her blog. She’s expanded the information in her blog over the past few years to build tools relevant to researchers and make them available on this site as well. If you wonder about Tara’s credibility, wonder no more – she’s an expert on Internet search engines and how they can be used effectively in business situations, according to O’Reilly, and she wrote the Official Netscape Guide to Internet Research in 1996 and co-authored a 2nd edition issued in 1998 with Jill Alane Nystrom. Tara also wrote the book, Information Trapping: Real-Time Research on the Web, which was published in 2006.
- Search Engine Guide : Jennifer Laylock has been involved in Internet marketing since 1995 and with SEO and SEM since 2001. After “serving her time” working for a variety of different firms, she left the world of traditional agencies to serve as editor-in-chief of Search Engine Guide, an industry site aimed at educating small business owners about search engine marketing. She also is author of The Small Business Guide to Search Engine Marketing and of the free Zero Dollars, a Little Bit of Talent and 30 Days series. Laycock now focuses primarily on education, training and consulting as an independent online marketing consultant for small to mid-size businesses throughout the U.S. She is a requested speaker and has served as both a panelist and a moderator at Incisive Media‘s popular Search Engine Strategies conferences along with speaking at Jill Whalen’s High Rankings Seminar (see #7), the Microsoft Small Business Summit, the virtual tradeshow eComXpo, and served as a keynote speaker for the 2005 MIVA Small Business Conference.
- Search Marketing Gurus: Liana “Li” Evans is the creator and main contributor to Search Marketing Gurus and has assembled a well rounded group of search marketing professionals to contribute to the blog. Li holds degrees in both public relations and information systems, and has an extensive IT and marketing background. This technical and market-savvy background enabled Li to “find the light” with search marketing in 1999. She now focuses on natural search optimization, blog promotion, search industry news, link baiting and viral marketing. Li is an active contributor and moderator on the Crea8asite Forums (see #5) and contributes from time to time on High Rankings (see #7), Search Engine Watch and Webmaster World forums. She’s in close contact with Christine Churchill, as she currently is employed at Christine Churchill’s company, KeyRelevance, as the Director of Internet Marketing and she also forms part of the “club” at the SEM Clubhouse (see below).
- SEM Clubhouse: One member of the SEM Clubhouse, Christine Churchill, is president and founder of KeyRelevance and she’s a recognized expert in the field of SEM. She is a strong advocate for ethical search engine marketing, and was a member of the founding Board of Directors of the Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization (SEMPO). She currently serves as the Chairman of the Dallas-Fort Worth Search Engine Marketing Association (DFWSEM), and she’s a regular speaker at SEO and other Internet events. In addition, she has written widely on search engine marketing and has taught SEO classes through the International Association of Webmasters. Prior to founding KeyRelevance, Christine was the Director of Web Development at NetMechanic. Christine consistently doubled search engine traffic to NetMechanic every 6-9 months. In addition to running KeyRelevance, Christine is the Search Engine Friendly Design and Usability Moderator and the Pay Per Click Moderator on the High Rankings Forums (see #7).
- SEO Blog: Not only does Lisa Ditlefsen maintain this blog, she co-founded SEO Chicks with Anita Chaperon in an effort to get some “female attitude into the SEO and SEM blogosphere.” Lisa currently works as head of search at Base One, where she set up and developed the search department from scratch three years ago. Lisa has eight years experience in marketing, of which almost four years have been in SEO/SEM. She writes a regular column for B2B Marketing Magazine and also regularly contributes to other publications off- and online. She has been a speaker at both SMX (Search Marketing Expo) and SES conferences. Last year Lisa won an award at the B2B Marketing Awards 2007 in the category “B2B Newcomer of the Year.” This year Lisa won “Best Use of Technology by under 30 Year old Woman” at the Blackberry Women & Technology Awards.
- SEOMoz: Rebecca Kelley is a search marketing consultant for SEOmoz, where she writes for the company’s blog and helps provide SEO resources to SEOmoz’s Internet marketing community. She also lends her expertise to various clients with specialization in link building, keyword research, link bait generation, site reviews and social media marketing. Rebecca also blogs for SEO Chicks (see #14), is a copy editor for Search Engine Land and moderates for Sphinn as “squishee.” Last, and not least, she’s a contributor to Fan Girl’s Men of SEO (see #9)
- Sugarrae: “Never mess with a woman who can pull rank,” meaning search engine rankings. Rae Hoffman, also known as Sugarrae, is the principal of Sugarrae SEO Consulting, a company (and blog) that focuses on SEO, viral and affiliate marketing, site auditing, link development road maps and much more. She also owns MFE Interactive (Marked For Evaluation), a Web site publisher with a number of online properties. She’s a moderator at Webmaster World, is active at Sphinn, and you may find her at Facebook and/or Twitter as well.
- The Link Spiel : Debra Mastaler will tell you that getting the right links on your Web site is vital for that site’s success. What’s difficult is influencing the right people to provide those links, and Debra will show you how to accomplish this goal. Debra is President of Alliance-Link, an interactive marketing company focused on providing custom link building campaigns and link training. In business since 2000, Debra offers a common sense approach to link building by combining traditional sales and promotional strategies with effective online search engine marketing tactics. She often is a featured guest speaker at SES and she’s a guest blogger for Search Engine Land and Search Engine Guide (see #11).
- Vanessa Fox: Vanessa’s personal blog is entitled, “VanessaFox.Nude.,” which is a play on the fact that her name is associated with another woman who is a well-known adult entertainer. But, this Vanessa – who obviously has a sense of humor – deals more with adult solutions to page ranks, SEO and more. Her latest projects include Jane and Robot and Nine by Blue, both subjects dealing with search issues. She also works with Ignition Partners as an Entrepreneur in Residence, is a Features Editor at Search Engine Land, and has been “blogging plenty” at Google Webmaster Central, including a long stint at Inside Google Sitemaps blog.
- WebMama’s Look at the Web Barbara “WebMama” Collis a search engine specialist, a pioneer of search engine marketing (SEM), and an internationally recognized leader in SEO. Barbara founded WebMama.com Inc. in September 1996, posts regularly in her blog, established the global non-profit Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization (SEMPO), is a veteran speaker at the search engine strategies conferences and is a past member of the advisory board of the Internet marketing conference ad:tech.
Women In Marketing
Women in marketing is a bit different than women in SEO/SEM, as the women listed below deal less with technology and more with psychology and public relations. Many of these women have focused their expertise on how to market to other women. Does this make sense? We think so! We realize that we haven’t touched the depths of the women involved in this field, but we did choose the ones who seemed to be most active on the Internet. Each link listed below will take you to that woman’s blog.
- andHow To Reach Women: Tami Anderson is the co-founder and principal of andHow, a company that specializes in helping brands better market to women. She has over fifteen years of marketing experience, working with both Fortune 500 companies and niche brands. She and her business partner, Elizabeth Howland, formed andHow because “they believe that if companies would be willing to listen, set aside stereotypes and clearly and consistently communicate their brand values to their segment(s) of the women’s market they’d be practically assured of success.”
- Are You an Original?: This blog belongs to Anita Chaperon, the woman who co-founded SEO Chicks with Lisa Ditlefsen (see #14). She’s deep into Internet marketing, but she has a well-rounded eight years of of marketing at all levels under her belt, including PPC (Pay Per Click), direct marketing and project management. She leaves SEO to Lisa and she takes on the rest.
- Big Green Purse: If you want to empower women to use their marketplace clout to protect the environment, then you must find and talk with Diane MacEachern, founder and CEO of Big Green Purse. She’s launched the only company in the U.S. dedicated specifically to transforming women’s environmental concerns into measurable improvements in quality of life. She helps environmental organizations engage more women as members, activists, and donors, and she also encourages companies to green their products to appeal to more women consumers. A best-selling author, successful entrepreneur, sought-after public speaker, and long-time conservationist, Diane has more kudos to her name than we can list here. Be sure to learn more about her at her site.
- Boomer Women Marketing Group: Mary Brown serves as a partner of JWT BOOM, a division of global ad agency JWT. She’s backed by more than twenty years’ experience in branding, most recently as president and founder of Imago Creative – the only marketing firm in the U.S. that specializes in marketing to women Baby Boomers. With author Carol Orsborn, Mary co-authored the book, BOOM: Marketing to the Ultimate Power Consumer – The Baby Boomer Woman. As a recognized authority on this demographic, Mary is invited to speak at many industry conferences. Her blog reveals her expertise in the Boomer Woman topic.
- Conversation Agent: Valeria Maltoni is a frequent public speaker on brand marketing, customer service, and integrating social media tools in marketing programs to serve business strategy, and her blog is recognized among the world’s top marketing blogs. With a background in communications, customer dialogue, and brand management, Valeria has come to define modern business as a long and open conversation. Valeria is a Fast Company Expert blogger and a contributor to The Blog Herald and Marketing Profs Daily Fix. She also is a co-author of Conversation Agent, an ebook collaboration and blog created by103 of today’s top marketing writers. She’s an active member of the International Association of Business Communicators (IABC), the American Marketing Association (AMA), the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia (WACA), and the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA).
- Diva Marketing Blog: Toby Bloomberg, president of Atlanta-based Bloomberg Marketing, has a passion for the Internet. She has over 15 years’ experience in marketing as well, and she uses her talents to build strategic marketing plans for large organizations such as the Olympic Organizing Committee and SCORE. She write articles for marketing publications, serves on boards of the American Marketing Association and the Atlanta Interactive Marketing Association. In the spring of 2004, Toby launched Diva Marketing Blog, where she brings her southern grace to full play with comments such as “Y’all, marketing is not brain surgery. We should be willing to take a few risks.”
- eMarketing Talk Show: Cindy Turrietta is an Internet marketing specialist and co-host of the eMarketing Talk Show. With a background in data and voice communications project management, Cindy founded her first Internet marketing business, CindyT.Consulting DBA Affordable Search Engine Ranking in 2002.In 2004, Cindy met Mike Purdy of World Talk Radio and became interested in developing an Internet talk show on the subject of Internet marketing. She asked Brooke Schumacher, founder of B Line Marketing, if she would be interested in co-hosting and they began to put together a plan. Todd Sarouhan joined the mix and they recorded their first eMarketing Talk Show episode on March 11, 2005.
- In Women We Trust: Mary Clare Hunt is the author of In Women We Trust: A cultural shift to the softer side of business. And, she also created this blog to emphasize putting Purse String Theory into action. The core of this theory lies in action via “purses, peers and posts,” by turning women into business and climate change agents. With degrees in business and marketing, Mary has been self-employed most of her life. She also is key to Sustainable Products Corporation.
- Kinetic Ideas: Wendy Maynard owns Kinesis Marketing, an award-winning marketing firm that provides marketing strategies to multi-million dollar businesses. She started Go Marketing Mavin to help small business owners apply the same effective marketing strategies. Her blog, Kinetic Ideas, focuses on how small and medium-sized businesses can apply various off- and online marketing tactics.
- Learned on Women: Andrea Learned began to research and write about more traditionally male-dominated industries in 2004, and this focus led her to hone in on subjects such as outdoor sports (which also is a personal passion), consumer electronics and the radio industry, to name a few. That same year, she co-authored the book, Don’t Think Pink: What Really Makes Women Buy – And How To Increase Your Share Of This Crucial Market with Lisa Johnson. Currently, Andrea spends time with her blog and she contributes regularly to HuffingtonPost.com. She’s also a contributor to publications such as MarketingProfs.com, Ad Map, The Advertiser,and more.
- Lip-sticking: There’s not enough room to write about Yvonne DiVita’s accomplishments and current interests here, but we’ll point you to her online presence(s) to give you a foothold into her world. Yvonne is the founder and president of Windsor Media Enterprises, LLC, an “author services” company that specializes in print-on-demand book publishing technology, professional business blog creation and social media. Lip-sticking is a blog with a focus on the women’s market. Her other blogs include the publishing blog, Aha!, WME Blogs, a blog about blogging; and WME Books, a blog about her authors’ books. Once a month she contributes a post on marketing to women to the online interactive marketing site, Adotas .
- Live Path: Leigh Duncan-Durst is one woman that doesn’t fit easily into a category. She founded her business,Live Path, in 2005 after nineteen years in eCommerce, IT, usability, new technology, marketing, customer relationship management, operations and business strategy. In addition to numerous web awards, Leigh received Compaq’s 2003 Cutting Edge award for wireless development with the United States Senate. Today, Leigh is an active industry consultant, writer, speaker and teacher. But, the blog (and her business) is all about the customer experience – but you can expect much more from this Renaissance woman.
- Marketing Profs Daily Fix: You’ll find plenty of women writing at this blog, but Ann Handley is the Chief Content Officer, which means that she heads up “All Things Content” on the MarketingProfs Web site. She also blogs at The Huffington Post as well as at her personal blog, Annarchy. Prior to these stints, Ann co-founded Clickz.com, currently one of the largest resources for interactive marketing news, information, commentary, advice, opinion, research and reference.
- Marketing to Women Online: Holly Buchanan began her career as a copywriter and creative director, working for “over a thousand clients.” For the past four years she’s been working with best-selling authors Bryan and Jeffrey Eisenberg at Future Now, Inc. in the capacity of Senior VP of Client Services for this Web site conversion and persuasion architecture company. Her blog, which began as Marketing to Women Online under a different domain name has traveled with her to Future Now. This is Holly’s voice on marketing to and for women across the U.S.
- Mary Schmidt, Marketing Troubleshooter: This woman may not tell you what you want to hear, but she’ll tell you what you need to hear about strategic planning, business development, customer service and tactical marketing. Although Mary has held staff and management positions in business strategy, product management and marketing for several global corporations, she prefers to work with “Mom & Pop” businesses since her parents were entrepreneurs. She is a former president of the Albuquerque Independent Business Alliance and she entertains a global audience with her perspectives in her blog.
- MooneyThinks: Kelly Mooney is a fanatic about study, creativity, and advocacy for the optimal customer experience. So, she plants herself firmly in the customer’s shoes to provide insights to her peers and clients. She is co-author of The Ten Demandments: Rules to Live By in the Age of the Demanding Customer, and she’s president and Chief Experience Officer for the interactive marketing and technology firm, Resource Interactive. Kelly is a frequent keynote lecturer and panelist for national conferences and she lectures at The Ohio State University.
- RE:INVENTION:Kirsten Osolind is a former Fortune 500 marketing executive and is the found CEO of RE:INVENTION Marketing in Chicago, a nationally noted marketing and PR firm that helps companies market to working women. Her firm produced the 2004 report, “The Venture Funding for Women Entrepreneurs Report.” This research often is used as an industry barometer and it has inspired the Women Technology Cluster’s Venture Awards programs. The re:invention blog is a format for this company to share how women-targeted marketing and PR can boost sales and profits.
- Scrappy Marketing Solutions: Angie Pedersen likes small businesses, so she started her own – Scrappy Marketing Solutions – where she combines her pioneering expertise in scrapbooking with her knowledge in marketing and blogging. She dedicates her time to helping other small businesses get noticed, and she also gets to share her skills with scrapbooking along the way. Angie maintains two award-winning web sites, four blogs, and a podcast. She also is the author of the books, The Book of Me: A Guide to Scrapbooking about Yourself, Growing Up Me: A Guide to Scrapbooking and Your Child’s Stories, and The Book of US: A Guide to Scrapbooking about Relationships .
- The Power of the Purse: This blog shores the book publication by the same name, and focuses on how women influence purchases – hence, how businesses need to change their marketing to focus on women. The author, Fara Warner, has written about marketing, advertising, and consumer trends for more than fifteen years for publications such as the Wall Street Journal and Fast Company. She is a recipient of a 2006 Diamond Award from Women in Communications for her work illuminating women’s issues in the media.
- Wonderbranding: Michele Miller has devoted seven years to growing her own public relations firm in New York, and now she’s the “Wizard of Ads” partner at Wonderbranding, where she works with a powerful roster of small businesses across North America. She is an international speaker and a teacher on the topic of marketing to women. She’s the author of The Natural Advantages of Women, an audiobook that has been hailed for its concepts, principles, and new scientific information that explains how the female brain is “hardwired” for personal greatness. Her blog centers on marketing to women and has won awards from Marketing Sherpa and Forbes.com, and was featured in Seth Godin‘s Book, Bull Marketing. Michele also authors the marketing column for Inc.com.
Women In Design
Women who build Web sites, program those sites and who have kept up with the changes in this industry are numerous. This job has proven ideal for the stay-at-home mom, or for the woman who loves to meet a challenge with her artistic and creative skills and knowledge. The list below doesn’t touch the depth of talent available on the Web, but it does represent a broad range of services in design. Most of these women share their knowledge through their blogs.
- Brass blogs: Michelle “Shelly” Cole, a visual artist, is the owner of Brass Blogs, and she describes her site and services as, “A small web design company run by a gal with a pair of brass ones.” A self-described perfectionist, Shelly began to code on a Commodore 64 hooked up to the family television, typing in DOS commands to make the computer chirp like a bird. She’s self-taught, following the example of a mother who loved to tear computers apart and put them back together again. Now, Shelly designs Web sites – specifically blogs – and she writes about her work and discoveries in her blog. She’s a member of Wise-Women and the Women’s Designer Group.
- Brutally Succinct: Here is an honest woman. She states that she cannot draw, scripting language hurts her brain, she can barely hand code (“I can, trust me, I can”), and often is “totally devoid of design inspiration, ideas, or for that matter.” But, her blog and her business site belie her comments. Joni Mueller, in reality, is one half of Pixelita Designs, a Houston, Texas-based web design shop specializing in WordPress-, CMS Made Simple- and TextPattern-driven small business and professional web sites. Her partner is Belgrade, Serbia graphic artist Ivan Minic, who owns and operates Burek Forum, the largest Internet forum in Serbia.
- Design*Sponge: Design*Sponge editor Grace Bonney works as a contributing editor at Domino Magazine and CRAFT magazine, and as a freelancer with top publications like House and Garden, New York Home, Food and Wine, Better Homes and Gardens, CITY Magazine, Time Out New York Kids, Archinect, The New York Post, Everyday with Rachael Ray and others. So, she’s well-steeped in the world of home and product design and her blog’s popularity validates her skills. She also runs a national series of meetups for women running design-based businesses called the D*S Biz Lady Series, local events designed to connect local designers and to provide them with free advice on the subjects of PR/marketing, legal concerns, business/financial decisions and wholesaling.
- WebDevStudios: Lisa Sabin-Wilson literally wrote the book, WordPress for Dummies, so she’s got the corner on how to put a WordPress site together with ease. Her blog, which is an extension of her Web design business, talks about various sites she’s designed, including some issues she had to work around. It’s interesting to look over the color choices that Lisa uses for various Web site constructions. This is not a one-woman operation, as Lisa currently manages a staff of six employees. Lisa also maintains a personal blog, where admirers can follow her perspectives on personal life, culture and design.
- ShiftFWD: Naomi Niles is a Colorado lady who married and moved to Spain. She studied psychology until she realized she could make a living with her innate design talent and a studied application of Web skills. She’s especially interested in information architecture, project management, consulting, and marketing and she loves “to be a part of every step of each project we [she and her husband, Koldo Barroso] take on from beginning to end.” The Intuitive blog carries information for Web designers as well as for clients, with a personal touch and great illustrations that makes the blog a pleasure to read.
- Jina Bolton: Jina is an interactive designer, artist and co-author of the book, The Art & Science of CSS. She currently works at Salesforce as a Senior Product Designer, and before that at Apple as a Web developer. She has also consulted for various agencies and organizations including the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative. You can find musings and information about writing, art, design, markup and life in general at her blog. As she says, “I like making pretty websites, and then I like writing and speaking about it,” so you can find Jina at various conferences and as a contributor to places like Sitepoint.
- LeaLea’s BlogBlog: Yes, you can say it all twice. But, there’s only one Lea Alcantara, the sole proprietor of Lealea Design who “is often hired to kill bad design.” Ms. Alcantara’s articles have appeared in Design-in-Flight, and her Art of Self-Branding series has been linked and well-received by several design blogs and publications. She was also interviewed in the October 2006 issue of Applied Arts magazine. Her thoughts and techniques regarding branding are also shared through her speaking engagements at conferences like the Future of Web Design 2007 in New York City and SXSW (South by Southwest) Interactive Festival in Austin, TX.
- Molly: Who else but Molly E. Holzschlag? Molly is a well-known Web standards advocate, instructor, and author. She is group lead for the Web Standards Project (WaSP) and an invited expert to the HTML and GEO working groups at the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). Included among the thirty-plus books that she’s authored and co-authored is The Zen of CSS Design, a project that showcases the most progressive csszengarden.com designs. Visit her blog to learn about her perspective on Web design and development work and personal thoughts.
- Nina: Nina Meiers has over a decade of Web development, design and hosting experiences and she shares those experiences through XD Design. She’s focused on building a business around using the DotNetNuke open source Web application framework, and she was a core team member of the project for two years. Her international clientèle ranges from Fortune 500 companies to mom and pop operations who want to use this framework to build their online business. Her blog hones in on her DotNetNuke fixation, and she operates the largest ‘free’ community network outside the DotNetNuke website.
- O-bleek: Katie Lee always had her heart set on becoming a veterinarian – but a veterinarian who loved to draw and paint. Although she’s the caretaker of four cats, two pugs, and a handful of parrots, her true love now is graphic design and the Web. Together with her programming husband, they make a formidable statement. Katie’s blog is filled with graphic design tips and personal and professional insights.
- Jen Bekman: Jen Bekman is a gallery owner, a writer, a native New Yorker, the founding editor of the design blog Unbeige (MediaBistro) and the current author of the Personism blog. The latter writings are about photography, design, current events and issues. The success of Jen’s gallery depends a great deal upon her Internet experience that is integral to her PR and marketing strategy, and her fresh perspective on the art world. She’s especially known for her program that focuses on emerging artists and innovative group shows.
- Snippets of Life: Karen Cheng has a BA in design and advertising, and she has worked as an art director, Web and graphic designer in Singapore and Australia. Now, she focuses on her blog, where she expounds on “parenting, children, art, design, food, fashion, blogging, photography, online shopping and most of all, finding inspiration and happiness in the simple, beautiful quirks of life.” Snippets of Life has won numerous national and international awards and has been listed in the Top 100 Australian Blogs and in the Top 50 Australian Women’s Blogs.
- Standards for Life: Natalie Jost is a standards-conscious Web designer who has studied under the likes of Cameron Moll, Jeffrey Zeldman, and Dan Cederholm. Freelancing since 2004, Natalie also writes for Godbit and is a member of 9rules network. Her blog is a reflection of her skills, knowledge, and personal happenstances.
- Veerle’s Blog: Veerle is a Web standards-compliant graphic and Web designer who lives in Belgium. She began her career in 1992 as a freelance designer. In 2000, she founded Duoh! together with Geert Leyseele. She currently is CEO of Duoh!, and her company has been working for the Library of Congress on a project called “The Learning Page.” Her blog is a popular online source for topics that range from XHTML to graphic design tips.
- Lulu Says: Lori Marshall is one part of Lulu Says, which is an extension of Lulu Wow design (Web design and SEO marketing for women), which is an extension of Unique Madness (Sarasota Web Designer). Lori is fixated on CSS, SEO and photography and stays up to speed on Photoshop techniques and a desire to help women with their businesses online.
- Web Directions South: Maxine Sherrin is a “shy person” who avoids stages, but she likes to dot i’s and cross t’s as co-founder of this blog that brings Web design and development as well as the interesting aspects of online life to readers. Maxine and partner, John Allsopp, also produce a Web design and development conference called, “Web Directions,” where Web industry experts from around the world gather to educate, entertain and inspire their attendees. Their conferences are held annually in Sydney, Australia and in Vancouver, Canada.
- Web Teacher: Virginia DeBolt wants to share everything she knows about HTML and CSS. So, she uses this blog to impart her knowledge. She’s the author of two books, Mastering Integrated HTML and CSS and Integrated HTML and CSS: A Smarter, Faster Way to Learn. She also manages a creative writing blog suitable for teachers who work with kids (First 50 Words), and she maintains a more personal site (but not much – we think her life is her work!) at Virginia DeBolt.
Women In Social Media And Writing
This category covers women who are involved with Web 2.0 projects, social networks that bring women together, and women who teach others how to write so they can use tools such as blogs, virtual worlds and other new media Web apps. This list touches on just a few of the many Web sites we discovered on this trip.
- A Writer’s Edge: Georganna Hancock was born with a pencil in her mouth, and four decades or so later, she’s still scribbling. She’s a widely published writer who provides classes and coaching to beginners who want to write for magazines and journals, news mediums and more. Ms. Hancock’s blog reflects her coaching skills as she imparts information about every type of writing imaginable.
- Beth’s Blog – How Nonprofits Can Use Social Media: Beth Kanter is a trainer, blogger, and consultant to nonprofits and individuals in effective use of blogging, tagging, wikis, photo sharing, video blogging, screencasting, social networking sites, virtual worlds and more to support nonprofit organizations. She is an experienced coach to “digital immigrants” in the personal mastery of these tools. Her blog is a place to capture and share ideas about nonprofit technology, educational technology, adoption challenges, information design, visual thinking, creativity, ICT in the developing world, and much more.
- Blogher: In 2005, Lisa Stone invited Elisa Camahort Page (see #83) to help her launch a conference for women who blog. Soon after, Elisa met Jory Des Jardins and invited her to join as well. Today, just three mere years later, BlogHer provides the number one community for and guide to blogs by women, via annual conferences, through their Web site, and an advertising network of 1,400 qualified, contextually targeted blog affiliates. BlogHer Inc. is majority-owned by the three co-founders and has backing from Venrock. As of July 20, 2007, the lists of blogs by women, organized by topic, are more than 13,000 blogs and growing daily. Every day, over sixty Blogher editors write daily guides to the hottest blogging by women in over twenty popular topics, from news and technology, to food, health and family.
- Blogging Sueblimely: Although Sue has a background in Web design, social psychology and sociology, she found that she had more to say about blogging than anything else. When she discovered there were many other well respected blogs about blogging, she narrowed her focus to “help bloggers enjoy their blogging and to get the very most of it.” No matter if you’re a complete beginner or a seasoned pro, you can find some great information at this blog. Sue also provides more blogging tips, help, designs and templates at Sueblimely Blogspot.
- Confident Writing: Joanna Young is a writing coach and freelance writer who shares her knowledge openly for anyone who wants to learn to improve writing for greater impact and to make a stronger connection. She will teach you to find your “voice” and give you confidence in your writing skills. Her blog is filled with writing tips and virtual coaching skills.
- Emily Chang: Emily is another one of those women who has accomplished so much that it’s difficult to know what to impart. She’s an award-winning strategic designer and co-founded Ideacodes.com, a Web consultancy located in San Francisco that focuses on “the design and user experience of next generation Websites, social applications and networked communities.” She is the creator of the Web 2.0 resource, eHub and eHub Interviews, and she also co-created Twitterverse.com, a word and tag mashup based upon Twitter’s public messages. Most recently, Emily presented PicoCool to the public, “a new site that’s dedicated to bringing you tiny and obscure content from the world of peer media, social networks and subcultures. Cool content from real people.” Emily’s blog covers all these social media and Web 2.0 topics and more. Be sure to hit the “about” link at her blog to learn more about this energetic and creative woman.
- Groundswell: Charlene Li’s blog has been incorporated into this site, which also serves as a promotional tool for her new book by the same name. In this book, Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff show how leading companies are gaining insights, generating revenues, saving money, and energizing their own customers through online social media. Charlene is one of the leading voices in social computing and Web 2.0 through her work over the past nine years as one of the most quoted analysts at technology and market research company Forrester Research. An accomplished and frequently requested public speaker, she often appears at industry events.
- Reach Group: Three women run The Reach Group, a boutique consultancy that provides “fresh insights and clear thinking about the Connected Generation.” The Reach Group began in 2000 with Reach Women, a respected source of market intelligence on female consumers. Founded by author and marketing expert Lisa Johnson, Reach Women helps leading brands understand and build relationships with women, primarily young professionals ages 18-35. In 2004, Reach Women conducted a groundbreaking, two-year qualitative study on connected women that revealed an emerging consumer group defined more by their relationship to technology and less by their gender. This company’s blog and podcasts reveal much about marketing, and more about how to reach consumers through new media.
- Rethink Pink: Although this site focuses on marketing, the focus brings women together to talk about how the media and marketing efforts work for or against women. You can find current news, opinion, stats and more here written by both male and female bloggers and professionals in their fields. The link will take you to Rethink Pink’s home page, where you can click on any link to find various updated blog entries on specific topics.
- Techipedia: Tamar Weinberg is a social media fanatic, and she provides consulting in Internet marketing and blogs for numerous online publications. Her mark is most notably seen at Lifehacker, Search Engine Roundtable and Mashable. Tamar’s blog is filled with notes and perspectives about all online social media.
- Women’s Voices for Change: This site offers news, commentary and opinion about and for women over age 40 with a focus on women’s “health, beauty, wisdom and vibrancy.” The current contributors include doctors, literary agents, presidents of nonprofit organizations and business founders. And, they’re all women. Women’s Voices for Change always seeks new contributions and active participation in this nonprofit organization’s activities.
- Wonderful Web Women: Janet Beckers, an Internet marketer, artist, mother and a “wanna-be surfer” (as in water, not on the Internet), started Wonderful Web Women to share their stories with other entrepreneurial women. She states that all the women listed here have two things in common: They are generous with their knowledge and they genuinely care about helping other women succeed. This link will take you to the blog filled with news about Janet’s searches. The blog is part of the Wonderful Web Women site.
- WonderWebby: Jasmin Tragas is a managing consultant at IBM in the arenas of learning, collaboration and knowledge. She’s worked in publishing and in new media since 1993. Her degrees are in animation and multimedia, but she focuses more these days on how to communicate and share knowledge through the use of social and virtual mediums.
Women In Business
We included women in “business,” because most of these women are in the business of doing businesses on the Web. Their blogs provide information about how they achieved their goals and how they met their failures. Other blogs provide information about certain industries and how they can help you succeed in business, no matter if it’s online or not.
- Skimlinks: Alicia Navarro came up with the idea for Skimlinks during a job interview with Google. She worked with an international team of designers and technologists to create this service aimed at making busy people’s lives a little simpler. Once that project was finished in 2006, Alicia created Skim-in-a-Box in 2007. This is a platform that can customize and create instances of the entire Skimbit tool for other portals or companies. The blog is a true reflection of her success.
- bizwomen: If you’re a business woman, you can use this growing and emerging online community to connect with other female executives and entrepreneurs. This site is a service of bizjournals, and online media division of American City Business Journals.
- Black Business Women Online: Black Business Women Online is a blog designed for African American business women, professionals, and entrepreneurs. Take advantage of professional tools, including the Black Business Women Network and connect with a growing circle of successful women in business.
- Build a Better [Business] Blog: Patsi Krakoff and Denise Wakeman, otherwise known as “The Blog Squad,” bring their professional advice on with this blog. They operate a “blog crisis prevention program” that is dedicated to extreme blog makeovers. You’ll learn some no-nonsense how-to information that will make your blog stand out among your competition through their tips and help. Explore the site to learn more about their publications and speaking engagements as well.
- FMWF: Although not a blog, the Financial Mail’s Women’s Forum channel is a fantastic resource to learn about the female movers and shakers in the U.K. With topics about how to start your business, financial matters and a mentoring program, this site has much to offer anyone who wants to learn as much as possible about going into business. Lisa Buckingham founded FMWF in early 2001, and it has grown to become one of the most important women’s networks in that country.
- Gutzy Women: This link will take you to Debbie Ducic’s blog for her Gutzy Women Web site. The site supports women in business while “gently removing the fear of technology and online marketing.” The blog contains inspirational bits and tips for women in business, and most of the topics center on technical issues, new media and business. Debbie is a long-time business woman who has taken life by the horns. She’s willing to share any and all experiences to help young (and not-so-young) entrepreneurs to overcome their fears about going into or continuing their businesses.
- Just Make Money Online: Ok. We will, with Shai Coggins’ help. Shai went online for the first time in 1997, and she was hooked on the ‘net from that point. She consolidated her many blogs into one blog project in 2005, and that’s how the About Weblogs project was born along with the help of twenty other female bloggers. From there, b5media approached her and her project became part of the b5media network. And, that’s also when Shai became the first female b5media partner as well. You can find Shai elsewhere on the Web, including her podcast show called Shai in 60 Seconds and her personal blog at ShaiCoggins.com.
- Sparkplug CEO: Wendy Piersall started her blog as an experiment that complimented her home business. After three months, Wendy’s eMom’s at Home blog became its own full time job and she had to rethink her strategy about the business. Within two years, Wendy had a thriving business on her hands as she began to focus on at-home business owners (not just moms!) who wanted new answers to old questions about how to run a business from home. Her eMom’s blog has been transformed to Sparkplugging, and her personal blog (linked through her name above) has been renamed to Sparkplug CEO.
- Startup Princess: Kelly King Anderson started this international network for women entrepreneurs to learn and support one another in 2006. As a mom who struggled to launch her own company, she wanted to meet and learn from other like-minded women. Startup Princess now is Kelly’s primary business, and she serves as managing director and site editor. Startup Princess has been recognized by Entrepreneur magazine and Costco Connection listed Startup Princess as a Top Resource for women entrepreneurs in May 2007. The link for this resource goes to the site’s home page, as you can find several blogs within this site’s resources from the links at the top of the page.
- The Global Small Business Blog: Laurel Delaney is a successful entrepreneur, author, speaker and educator with more than 20 years of experience in global business. Also known as a “global guru” and the “world’s greatest borderbuster,” she founded The Global Small Business Blog (GSBB) for the purpose of helping entrepreneurs and small businesses expand their businesses internationally. She is the founder of Chicago-based LaurelDelaney.com and GlobeTrade.com, both created with a mission to promote and foster international entrepreneurship.
- Virtual Assistant – the Blog About Our Industry: When you go to this site and click on the “About” tab, you may chuckle at how Kathie M. Thomas lays her experience out in a list. Only a person who is a virtual assistant (or a person who has successfully worked with virtual assistants) will understand that significance. Lists are the way to make everything very, very clear, and Kathie’s thirteen years in this practice probably has made her a list maniac. She’s the founder of A Clayton’s Secretary (1994), and she pioneered the virtual assistant (VA) industry in Australia. She currently manages a network of virtual assistants with members in sixteen countries and is moderator for two well-established VA chat forums which have over 1,400 virtual assistant members collectively.
- Work It Mom: Aliza Pilar Sherman is all over the Web and every women could use help from this award-winning author, speaker, web pioneer, e-marketing expert, freelance writer, television & radio producer and filmmaker. Ms. Sherman also can be defined by her connections to women, business and the Web. This is just one blog in her roster, which also includes Rants and Raves, Travelgirl, and Moonbow Productions(film) among other sites. She also is co-founder of Webgrrls, a site that focuses on building Web sites and online resources for women to help them propel their personal and professional lives forward.
- Worker Bees: Elisa Camahort founded Worker Bees, the marketing consulting business, in 2003, and has spent a lifetime in the creative arts, sixteen years in marketing and the “last few years being seduced by the online universe.” She’s been widely published and has extensive speaking experience, she conducts workshops and presentations about blogging, and is the co-founder of the Blogher organization (see #59). The reason we slotted Elisa for ‘women in business,’ is that the Worker Bee blog is geared toward any woman in any business, filled with tips, news, and insights from every angle you can imagine – politics, business and more. You also can find a vast resource of blogs here – all written by women – as the Blogher and Worker Bees blogs are listed in the right sidebar of the Worker Bees blog.
- Working Solo: Leah Maclean has played various roles as an interface between “business reality and technical possibility” for over two decades. She’s helped large and small businesses to find an operational fit between their goals and their technological needs. She created this blog in 1999 in her desire to work with small businesses. Her focus is for women who have been “talked down to, kept in the dark, and ripped off with your design and technology,” and readers can find plenty of useful information here on how to handle tech and design problems on their own steam.
Women In Technology
According to many online reports, there is a shortage of women in IT. But, the lines often are blurred when it comes to IT, programming, code, etc. And, more women are using the Web as a means to communicate their technical goals, no matter their field. The following list provides a broad mix of CTOs, open source advocates, groups of women in technical fields and more.
- AntonellaPavese.com: Antonella has gone from the farm (literally, with a degree in agriculture) to the research lab, where she became interested in the application of concepts and methods of cognitive psychology to the field of human-computer interaction and usability engineering. Her research focuses on how human attention and memory influence the control of action. In April 2002, she become the manager of the Web Usability Team. After 5 years in IT, she took a break and introduced user research and user-centered design to print design teams. Her blog seems to reflect her non-linear life with intelligent and witty commentary.
- All The Things: AKA Coffee Geek AKA Brenda Wallace AKA Taniwhaiti on flickr lives by the saying, “whoever dies with the most toys wins.” She is the superhero of Open Source in Wellington, New Zealand (a mecca for geeks), where she’s spearheaded Super Happy DevHouse Aotearoa – a monthly hackathon where coders from across Wellington hang in one place and “get their code on,” according to wellingtonista.com. She works for Catalyst IT and plays with gadgets all day. She also “organizes stuff” for Linuxchix New Zealand and “looks after” the Linuxchix International site. She also built the Geek Speak site, a place where you can find female techies to speak at your events. Oh, yes, and you might find her at Girl Geek Dinners Wellington as well.
- Cybergrrl: Nelly Yusupova is the CTO for The Cybergrrl Network of women’s online communities which is comprised of Cybergrrl.com, Webgrrls.com, and Femina.com (a directory of sites about and for women). She also founded Digitalwoman.com in 2004, a website development and Internet consultant practice.
- Gina.Place.: Gina is a geek girl, a documentation specialist and a Quality Assurance Engineer at a computer peripherals company. She also writes and is an avid photographer. Her blog shows her interest in technology, but she also reveals that geek girls have issues just like any other woman.
- Hawthorn Landings: Perhaps this blog should be Google Open Source Blog, as Leslie Hawthorn resides in both virtual realms. Leslie also manages the Google Summer of Code program and the Google Highly Open Participation Contest.
- Lady Loves Tech: Karen is a student at the New York Institute of Photography and she also is a Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator w/Messaging and work as a Network Engineer. She created this technical blog to share her insights on tech, tech news and her passion for all things tech. She’s a self-described “total geek” who finds time to serve as an associate editor at GeekNewsCentral.com and to share her photography online.
- Linuxchix: Deb Richardson started LinuxChix in 1999, because she was tired of seeing new users being browbeaten for asking “stupid” questions. So she started this group aimed at women who like Linux and for anyone who wants to support women in computing. This is an international group of Free Software users and developers.
- misbehaving.net: misbehaving.net is a weblog about women and technology, written by the likes of Hilde Corneliussen (researcher at Humanistic Informatics at the University of Bergen in Norway), Caterina Fake (Flickr co-founder), Meg Hourihan, Fiona Romeo and more. Rather than a gadget or meandering blog, the writing here focuses on the “celebration of women’s contributions to computing.” Plus, the writers point out new opportunities and challenges for women in the computing field.
- NCWIT: NCWIT is the National Center for Women & Information Technology, a coalition of more than 100 corporations, academic institutions, government agencies, and non-profits that work to increase women’s participation in information technology (IT). Girls represented just 15 percent of Advanced Placement computer science (CS) exam-takers in 2006; that’s the lowest female representation of any AP exam, so the NCWIT focuses on this market segment including teachers and students.
- NTEN: Holly Ross has been combing through tech fads for more than five years at NTEN (Nonprofit Technology Network) as its Executive Director. She lines up Webinars, conferences and research that will help members use technology to make the world a better place. Previous to her stint at NTEN, Holly worked for social change at CALPIRG.
- CareerCup: Gayle McDowell (formerly Gayle Laakmann), a software engineer, is the founder of this site. Career Cup is a resource for job seekers and employers which features Microsoft Interview Questions, Amazon Interview Questions, and questions from many other employers. She began this site after successfully running The Seattle Pixel and Seattle Anti-Freeze sites.
- Today’s Women and Technology: Kelley Caudle currently holds the title of Director of Intelligence Sys at S2 Corporation, she’s the CTO of One Universe Media and she’s the founder of Digital Operations. Formerly the C4ISR Chief Engineer on the GMD (Ground Based Midcourse Defense) program, she led the design and development of the largest single military system in the history of the U.S. with a $7 Billion per year budget. She was an initial military developer (1980s) that brought Internet Protocol (IP) communications over wireless systems, and the very first combined simulated and real components in the early 1990s. As author of Why Don’t You Just Shoot the Moose?, Kelley combines her love for the written word with her expertise for this blog.
- Popgadget: Mia and Hoyum Kim founded this online blog and magazine aimed specifically at women and their interactions with tech gadgets. The topics covered are those traditionally seen in women’s magazines, such as health and fitness, beauty and fashion, home, family, and entertainment; however, Popgadget brings a unique focus on the gadgets and people that bring innovations to those aspects.
- Tech Boutique: This blog is a shopping haven for any woman who loves gadgets. The blog, published in the U.K. is geared specifically toward women.
- Tech From an E-booker’s Viewpoint: Ellen Hage is an eBook freak – she owns dozens of eBook devices and purchased her first eBook in 2000 to the tune of $200. She must be in seventh heaven now, as she has access to free eBooks and devices from around the world that are much less expensive. And, she writes about every one of them. Want to know how much this woman knows? Her PhD dissertation was on eBook self-efficacy and usage levels across age and gender. How can you pass this up?
- WITI: WITI began in 1989 as The International Network of Women in Technology and, in 2001, evolved into The WITI Professional Association, the nation’s leading trade association for tech-savvy women. Carolyn Leighton founded this organization to help women advance by providing access to – and support from – other professional women working in all sectors of technology. WITI’s reach is international, and its products and services include networking, career services, national and regional conferences and events, publications and more. This link will take you to the WITI podcasts, but you can find articles, the WITI Wire and more from this link.