Black Leader Stories

RO WILLIAMS Houston, TX, United States

Brilliance in Unlikely places

« The truth is, it's not wizardry - it's persistence, resilience, and ingenuity formed out of necessity and perfected by choice.»

I love tech because of its power to scale. And, I’m most excited about a future where that power is more evenly distributed.

I, along with many of my other high achieving friends, grew up in the hood of Houston. If an outsider were to create a movie about our neighborhood, they’d probably tell the very obvious story of how many of my classmates were inmates before the age of 18. The most altruistic of them might highlight the story of how water contamination from the oil industry has disproportionately wreaked havoc on the lives of our families and neighbors.

What they likely won’t share are the stories of people like me – a tech exec who has built products that empower people around the world to reach their highest potential.

My upbringing taught me that brilliance lurks in the unlikeliest of crevices; a lack of options taught us creative resourcefulness. We empathize with the most vulnerable because we were one decision, program, or opportunity away from still being one of them.

These days, our creative problem solving is sometimes branded as “black girl magic.” The truth is, it’s not wizardry – it’s persistence, resilience, and ingenuity formed out of necessity and perfected by choice.

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