From Curls to Codes, AIGrrls Share Their Journey

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Image from CurlIQ, LLC, a Howard University alumni-run company that performs computer vision techniques on textured hair.

We gathered for AIGrrls at the Tabard Inn in Washington D.C. last week to focus on AI and personalization. How do we and how can we use deep learning to deliver data-driven experiences that are meaningful and relevant?

AIGrrls are civic tech leaders, data scientists, entrepreneurs, designers, academics and AI practitioners who meet once a month in the Washington D.C. region to share knowledge and network on the future of inclusive AI.

Those mixing it up this month included Coach Kathy Kemper, CEO and Founder of the Institute for Education (IFE); Professor Jane Wall, Director of Data Science Programs at American University; and Paula Davis Analytics and AI lead at Deloitte.

Here’s more on some of the AIGrrls at our November mixer:

Dr. Gloria Washington is an Assistant Professor in Computer Science at Howard University and teaches classes related to data science and software engineering. Additionally, she runs the Affective Biometrics Lab and performs research with her students on human-centered computing and biometrics. Dr. Washington is also on the board of CurlIQ, LLC, a Howard alumni-run company that performs computer vision techniques on textured hair. Their website is Curl IQ, try it out today!

Jennifer Bonine is a well-known speaker, teacher, and trainer at both national and international conferences. She has keynoted numerous Testing, Agile, and Development conferences. Jennifer’s belief is that we should do what we are passionate about, and she believes in living your passion. To this end, Jennifer co-founded and is the CEO of PinkLion.AI: a breakout company that brings AI to the world’s app teams and delivers AI integration with a human engagement model while educating teams on solving challenges with an AI-first strategy. Jennifer is currently collaborating in the entertainment, gaming, media, and professional sports industries with

PinkLion offers an AI-powered test automation platform which helps technology teams deliver the highest quality user experiences to their customers. The platform scales and tests thousands of apps and websites in parallel without the need to code or maintain tests. It allows users to automate testing for the most impactful user experiences so that they can publish their apps and websites, and release changes faster. Pioneering the way across all industries, particularly around the ability to work on unity, unreal, and gaming platforms.

Morgan Dwyer is a fellow in the International Security Program and deputy director for policy analysis in the Defense-Industrial Initiatives Group at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). At CSIS, Dr. Dwyer focuses on issues at the intersection of technology and policy, including defense acquisition, organizational reform, space, and cyber. Prior to CSIS, from 2016–2019, Dr. Dwyer served as an analyst in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Cost Assessment & Program Evaluation (OSD CAPE).

Kee Malesky is Head of Consumer Insights at IVOW AI. She talked about An Algorithm for Stories on Women, a crowdfunding and crowdsourcing campaign to source structured data on global stories, beginning with stories on women in history, culture, science and technology. Currently, there is no comprehensive algorithm to create AI-ready structured data around narratives of women who have inspired humanity across the centuries.

Kee noted this data collection is necessary to provide critical historical context for the preservation of culture with an emphasis on the role of women. This is the first of ten global AI and Storytelling challenges between 2019–2029 that will introduce global stories to AI and advance Cultural IQ in AI systems.

AIGrrls is a networking initiative created by former NPR journalist Davar Ardalan, founder of IVOW AI, and AI-by-design leader Nina Bianchi. To get involved — join us on LinkedIn (@AIGrrls Group) or email

Thanks to our amazing sponsors and Tential IT for making this event possible! The next AIGrrls is on December 17 at Spaces in Rosslyn, VA. RSVP here.

IVOW Founder and Storyteller in Chief

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