Celebrating mission-driven people or organizations that have helped push our tech community forward

If you have the privilege of working in tech in Indiana, you know our ecosystem is composed of not only brilliant minds and solutions, but also those willing to invest their time and resources. We’re encouraged by the number of people helping to create more opportunities in Indiana’s tech space.  

The Community Impact Award celebrates mission-driven people or organizations that have helped to push our tech community forward—the impact makers of the year. Whether it’s through a corporation, an agency, a social enterprise, or through grit and determination as an individual, these inspiring champions have made a difference for all of us, especially relating to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Our nominees have done everything from supplying communities and first responders with PPE and Covid Emergency Response funds to aiding businesses recovering from the economic effects of the pandemic. Some are even creating STEM visibility in low-income areas, empowering girls and women to explore STEM, supporting communities converting to a digital world, and identifying opportunities to do better within at-risk neighborhoods.

The 2020 Community Impact Award winner, Indiana Department of Corrections, is still at work implementing their program, The Last Mile. This program helps people who have been incarcerated by teaching them the technological skills they need to set themselves and their families up for positive future trajectories. This program teaches coding skills in HTML, JavaScript, PHP, CSS, NodeJS, and React, with both onsite and online training. Continued training and initiatives such as HIRE (Hoosier Initiative for Re-Entry) go hand-in-hand to help people do their best following incarceration.

The 2019 award winner was Katie Birge when she was the Executive Director for Launch Indy at Union 525. Katie was integral in fostering a communal workspace for tech start-ups and supporting them with the resources they need to thrive as entrepreneurs.  Since then, she has joined M25, an Indiana-based Venture Capital firm. Not only is she continually pushing for the growth of tech in Indiana, but M25 has also made a commitment to help fund, hire, and pivot untapped entrepreneurs, giving them access to the funding and resources they need to get up and running.  

This year’s nominees include:

  • Anushree Bag, Executive Director of Risk and Compliance – Indiana Office of Technology (Indianapolis, Ind.) — Anushree founded the Government Women in Technology group at the State of IN. GWIT is a supportive ecosystem for over 100 women in tech, and the first of its kind in the government space, nationally.
  • Trajectory (Indianapolis, Ind.) — Trajectory continues to reimagine how the tech community can drive social impact. They created a model for collaboration with the public sector that prevented 16,000 evictions while propelling systems change.
  • Women & Hi Tech (Indianapolis, Ind.) — Since 1999, Women & Hi Tech has supported, promoted, and advocated for women and girls, changing the STEM landscape to be equally inclusive to all.
  • Indy Women in Tech – EMPOWERIndy @HOME (Indianapolis, Ind.) — IWiT transforms women’s lives by helping break down the many barriers women face when pursuing a STEM education/career. This nominee helps give equal opportunity to women so they can achieve their dreams and succeed!
  • Armando Hernandez, Principal Scrum Master, Roche, (Indianapolis, Ind.) — Armando Hernandez works for Roche Diabetes Care, Inc. as a Scrum Master and has a Masters of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from New Mexico State University.
  • gener8tor (Indianapolis, Ind.) — gener8tor’s turnkey platform for the creative economy connects startup founders, musicians, artists, investors, universities, and corporations.
  • DeliverEnd, (Indianapolis, Ind.) — DeliverEnd developed and markets an app designed to improve the safety, security, and convenience of delivering items bought and sold on online marketplaces, such as Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist.

The 2021 Mira Award winners will be announced live during a special broadcast of the 22nd annual gala on Thursday, April 22, with presenting sponsor Salesforce.