LPGA Championship puts national attention on Indy Women in Tech

Last September, there was an announcement that combined four topics: golf, women, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and tech.

It was quite the combination of story lines and many of us were left intrigued by the idea of the proposed event — an LPGA Championship in Indianapolis that’s branded Indy Women in Tech.

Flash forward to today, and the Indy Women in Tech LPGA Championship presented by Guggenheim is a beacon that’s bringing focus and attention on issues critical to our thriving tech ecosystem.

Hosted at the Brickyard Crossing September 4 – 9, 2017, a Pete Dye golf course located inside the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, 144 of the world’s best LPGA Professionals will come to Indianapolis to play the IWiT Championship, a three-day stroke play event with a $2,000,000 purse.

If you’re thinking “how did a national golf event become branded as Indy Women in Tech?” That has to do with the presenting sponsor, Guggenheim Life & Annuity, which wanted to get involved in the community by bringing awareness to the needs for and of women in the tech industry, an issue that is top of mind in the Indianapolis tech ecosystem. Jared Council of the Indianapolis Business Journal wrote an in-depth article that highlights both the issues facing women in tech in Indy and how this event is involved in making a change.

Former Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard, who championed tech during his administration, helped align Guggenheim to the cause of women in tech.

“For our city to continue to grow and prosper, we must have a highly-educated, highly-diverse workforce. The Indy Women in Tech initiative’s goal is to provide opportunities for women of all ages to become part of Indianapolis’ growing and innovative tech sector. Without more women working in tech at every level, our city and our economy will never reach its full potential,” said Ballard.

The Indy Women in Tech Foundation (IWiT Foundation), a non-profit organization, was created to inspire women and female students of all ages to pursue opportunities in the technology field of their choice.  Specifically, they partner with allied organizations to recruit women to work and study in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) as well as provide the necessary financial support, training, and education in tech-related fields. See all of the individuals involved with the IWiT Foundation here.

While the world’s best golfers compete for the top prize during the LPGA Championship event, ancillary events will occur to support the mission of the IWiT Foundation. Those events include an IWiT Summit with nationally-recognized speakers and a STEM hands-on experience called The Eureka! Exchange for local youth. Additionally, other events and partnerships will occur throughout the next three years alongside the LPGA Championship such as TechPoint’s recently announced workforce partnership.

All of these events and partnerships are part of the Indy Women in Tech Championship presented by Guggenheim’s mission: to inspire and empower women to pursue a career in technology through community programs, to expose our youth to the engaging world of STEM through hands-on experiences provided by professional female role models, and to provide students and women the financial support and family services necessary to pursue their dreams.

“The tournament week is seen as a combination of the ongoing efforts of the IWiT Foundation. All of the proceeds from the event will benefit the IWiT Foundation, and the foundation will place money in causes associated with women in tech. Our event week will be packed with events associated with the initiative,” said Harry Hardy, Vice President of Octagon, the sports management group in charge of this event.

Interested in getting involved? Tickets are currently available to attend the three-day golf championship event, or you can be one of 700+ volunteers needed to make this event a success. Sponsorship is also available for companies interested in aligning their name and brand with this unique event.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sara Croft is the director of communications at TechPoint. She writes about Indiana tech companies, jobs, people and events. Reach out to Sara @saraelysecroft.