It's fun to think of it as SpaceX versus NASA, or Silicon Valley vs Aerospace.
But let's talk about D&I, and logs. Logs as in timber. 🌲
Talent is everywhere. Opportunity is not.
Under-matching affects white folk too.
A guidance counselor, college advisor,or mentor, can put a person on the right path.
He made rockets for fun in high school. He even made a rocket out of his dad's acetylene welder.
He went to college not at CalTech or MIT, but at the U. Of Idaho.
‘Do you want to be the guy who fixes the plane or the guy who designs the plane?’
But he felt stiffled by process at work. He had ideas for new types of rockets.
So he built rockets at home, building the largest amateur liquid-fueled rocket in history. Elon Musk noticed...
Everyone knows Elon Musk. No one knows Tom Mueller, even though Tom is the one currently designing a rocket that will put humans on Mars. 🤷🏿♂️
Somewhere in Georgia there is a black woman teaching HS math at a rural school, that could have advanced the state of the art in ML.
The goal of inclusion work is not "More black folk!" Or "More women!" The lack of black folk and women is a symptom of the root cause: opportunity to succeed and thrive is not evenly distributed.
Sometimes the interventions are much more work: creating a company culture that is not hostile for black women.
But the net result is the same: more inclusion, better talent, and a better end product.
But to me, this is much more inspiring:
SpaceX is the brainchild of a poor kid, lumberjack, rocket nerd, who's been working on this his whole life. 👍🏿👍🏿