For Tiffany Moore, diversity and inclusion (D&I) is more than just a catchphrase—it’s a serious commitment to change.
Since being appointed to Senior Vice President for Political and Industry Affairs for the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) last April, Moore leads the organization’s advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill around tech policy and oversees its various diversity initiatives. Prior to her promotion, Moore served as Vice President of Government and Political Affairs for three years. Her work began with CTA in 2010 as a consultant with an all women boutique lobbying firm in Washington, D.C.
“My role has two parts,” she told ThePlug. “I still do a lot of work with the White House and Congress on issues that impact communications and technology policy and the economy. But now, I also manage a new department that focuses on the future of work and how we as an industry can take advantage of the diverse talent our country has to offer.”
For a trade association comprised of roughly 2,000 companies such as Google, Facebook, Intel, Uber, Lyft, Samsung and a host of others, CTA is most recognized for its annual Consumer Electronics Show (or CES), the world’s largest consumer technology show uniting thousands of tech enthusiasts, innovators, and entrepreneurs in Las Vegas every January.
“Whether in CTA or CES, we move with intention,” Moore said. “We’re always looking in places to broaden the spectrum to take advantage of the best talent in the industry. We put on 300 sessions during CES and at this year’s show, we had a Media Trailblazers program that included Sherrell Dorsey as one of the many founders to join us at the show and even grace the stage.”
Moore says that CTA partnered with a number of organizations that focus on women entrepreneurs for this year’s CES, just one of its many areas of focus to strengthen inclusion. One of the biggest announcements coming out of CES was CTA’s $10 million commitment to invest in venture firms and funds focused on women, people of color and underrepresented startups and entrepreneurs, an effort led by CEO Gary Shapiro.
“Our CEO is very passionate and nimble and our board didn’t have to be coerced into the $10M announcement,” Moore said. “The launch of this fund is an investment, not a charitable contribution, and a reminder that the United States must invest in a diverse workforce in order to remain competitive at a global scale.”
Since the announcement, CTA garnered an overwhelming response from venture firms and funds with more than 80% focusing on women and entrepreneurs of color. Moore says that CTA released a questionnaire in February, which is now under review and will determine the next step on which partners in the fund will move forward.
“At CTA, our diversity efforts are on pipeline, retention, partnering, and investment,” Moore said. “We’re investing in girls and children of color by partnering with the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Washington and Clark County Schools in Las Vegas. We’re also working with the Congressional HBCU Caucus to ensure that the 47% of HBCU graduates who are engineers are prepared to enter the tech sector and be successful.”
CTA has also partnered with organizations like Hello Alice and latinoTech to focus on increasing representation of diverse founders, especially for individuals pursuing nontraditional pathways into tech.
“Every company is a tech company, and we’re trying to create other opportunities for everyone to get into the field,” Moore said. “With our apprenticeship program with IBM, individuals can cultivate skills that can be learned without a college degree.”
On the heels of her one year anniversary in the role, Moore continues to expand her reach in the D&I space recognizing that executive leadership is essential to embedding D&I into a company’s culture.
“It’s important that companies have diverse teams to ensure that their products and services will be received by a wider audience,” she said. “As an industry, diversity is not something that’s nice to do but something we must do to remain competitive.”
As planning for CES 2020 ramps up, Moore says she is committed to partnering with more organizations that focus on women and entrepreneurs of color to ensure full representation.
“I want to make sure that communities of color know that attending CES is an option, that outlets like The Plug Daily are covering the show and that women of color have a presence and a voice on the CES stage, too.”