In 2013 Lizzie Dyson and Georgie Bottomley, both UX professionals, loved their jobs but wondered where the other women were in the industry. They simply had no roles models to guide them in their careers. As a result, they set up Ladies that UX and held the first meeting in August 2013 in Manchester, UK. Since then, Ladies that UX has grown to become an international organization that creates a space for women from all levels to engage and talk about their experiences, both positive and negative, and get the encouragement and inspiration they sought. This serves to empower design teams to keep women off the sidelines, whether it’s by leading teams, speaking at conferences, or otherwise participating in their communities.
The monthly meetups serve to promote women in the field, a safe space for people to come together and support each other. For women who come to the events, it serves as a community where they can learn from one another and feel empowered. For men who come, they are encouraged to find ways of making their companies more inclusive.
The organization’s latest endeavor is Talk UX 2018, an annual, international design and technology conference led by women and put on by the Boston chapter. At tech conferences, women speakers are often in the minority as so they have taken the initiative to feature an all-female cast of presenters.
The distinguished list of speakers, panelists, and workshop facilitators includes such thought leaders as:
- Laura Granka, Director of UX, Google
- Elena Ontiveros, Content Strategy Manager, Airbnb
- Lola Oyelayo, Digital Product Strategist
- Lara Tacito, Senior Manager of Product Design, HubSpot
- Amy Deschenes, Senior UX Consultant, Harvard Library
- Kate Brigham, Design Director at ezCater
- Amy Cueva, Founder & Chief Experience Officer at Mad*Pow
- Libby Maurer, Director of User Experience at Hubspot
- Sarah Gibbons, Chief Designer, Nielsen Norman Group
- Meena Kothandaraman & Zarla Ludin, Experience Strategists & Co-Founders of twig+fish Research Practice
- Bhavika Shah, Product Manager at PluralSight and Kira MacLean, Senior UX Designer at PluralSight
Beyond individual contributors, there are also many corporate sponsors who want to do their part in supporting women and diversity in tech, such as a lead sponsor, Adobe. Other sponsors include HubSpot, CarGurus, Pluralsight, ezCater, Balsamiq, fuze Women’s Network, Pivotal Labs, Veracode, and Vermonster.
Talk UX takes place on October 18th and 19th in Boston, MA.