Women in Tech for Gender Equality Giving Circle Kicks Off!

Aug 12, 2022

We are thrilled to announce the launch of our Women in Tech for Gender Equality giving circle! This group is dedicated to supporting nonprofits that are women-led and supporting women’s education, health, and rights. During their first quarterly meeting, members of the group came together and learned about the nonprofit A New Leaf and their program Bank$Works, the recipient of their pooled funds for this quarter.

“There are many ways of supporting organizations, but being able to collectively pool our funds in the way that Grapevine is set up allows us to…have a real impact on people in support of women and women in tech.”

Lori Howard, Giving Circle co-leader

Donation recipient: A New Leaf program Bank$Works

During this first quarterly meeting, Laura Bode from A New Leaf gave a presentation to the group about their program called Bank$Works. This free 8-week program teaches struggling individuals – many of whom are women and women of color – the soft and technical skills needed to secure a job in financial services. Bank$Works is a national program that runs in 13 different cities around the country, and A New Leaf is proud to be the Bank$Works provider for the Phoenix Metro Area.

“Every company is a technology company, everything is tech-driven today…and if you haven’t had the opportunity to develop those skills…those women couldn’t get a job without technology support. There’s nothing in financial services that doesn’t involve some tech.” – Lori Howard

The program is completely funded by private resources, and not only provides courses for individuals hoping to improve their earning potential, but also helps with other things they might need like clothing for interviews or transportation and child care while they’re in the program.

“I’ve visited with several women who started in fintech at the entry level – where Laura is helping position them – and have worked their way through the chain. I think Laura is positioning them beautifully in their career. We all started somewhere.” – Tina Marie Baugh, group co-leader

Together, the Women in Tech for Gender Equality giving circle donated a total of $3,900 to A New Leaf for the Bank$Works program!

“[Bank$Works] really is one of our most impactful programs for changing the trajectory of someone’s life. We have so many wonderful outcome stories and you know you will be a part of one or more people's amazing outcomes this year,” Laura Bode told the group as she graciously accepted the donation.

If you’d like to watch Laura’s presentation about Bank$Works as well as her Q&A with the members of the group, watch the video below.

You can also learn more about the Bank$Works program here.

Women in Tech for Gender Equality Giving Circle Leaders

Kuki Gandhi


Kuki Gandhi is a Senior Product manager at Spatial Genomics Inc.

When asked why she joined the Women in Tech for Gender Equality group, Kuki said, “I joined WTGE to support women's rights and advocate for gender equity. I am a strong believer in the fact that when women are supported and uplifted, they uplift everyone around them. I also want to mentor young women for their professional growth and support women-led non-profit organizations by taking an active leadership role in their boards. Lastly, I also want to network & connect with like minded women.”

Susan Peediyakkal

Susan Peediyakkal is an Operations Manager at NASA Ames Research Center.

When asked why she joined the Women in Tech for Gender Equality group, Susan said, “As a female minority disabled veteran in Cybersecurity management, I feel I can bring a helpful perspective and insight to this community.”

Carrie Jones


Carrie Jones is a front-end engineer building exciting new credit and identity products in the fintech space. Carrie spent 2 decades working in the nonprofit sector before moving into a career in tech. She also serves as an instructor for LaunchCode's Women+ program.

When asked why she joined the Women in Tech for Gender Equality group, Carrie said, “There's no question that intentional efforts are needed to bring equal rights and empowerment for women and girls. It's something that's definitely important to me, and I think women in tech like myself have the power and mobility to make a difference.”

Lori Howard


Lori Howard is an experienced executive career transformation coach, helping tech leaders land executive roles with impact & income. She is also a former Tech Exec & Current SMB CEO.

When asked why she joined the Women in Tech for Gender Equality group, Lori said, “I'm actively seeking opportunities to support women in tech. I began my career as a woman in tech — and now I spend my career supporting tech leaders — helping individual contributors and leaders become high-value, well-paid tech execs. I see how the issues I struggled with continue today. Plus, I'd love to connect with others who are like-minded. I want part of my legacy to include helping make a difference in gender equity in tech.”

Tina Marie Baugh

Tina Marie

Tina Marie Baugh is a Director Information services at Cook Children's Health Care System.

When asked why she joined the Women in Tech for Gender Equality group, Tina said, “I was inspired to join this group because it strives to support organizations reaching to women who are entering the technology field or groups that are helping women develop skills to earn more. Women still make up only around 30% of the population in IT. My goals for the group are to meet like-minded people, form friendships, learn about organizations making real change in this space, and donate to their causes.”

The Grapevine Giving Circles Network

The Women in Tech for Gender Equality group is one of 60+ new giving circles launched by Grapevine as part of The Grapevine Giving Circles Network. To further our mission of democratizing philanthropy and providing more funding to underfunded causes and communities, we’re helping to launch giving circles in new areas and categories where they don’t exist already. The Grapevine Giving Circles Network gathers like-minded people around shared interests and values to connect, pool their donations, and make a bigger difference together. You can learn more about the Grapevine Giving Circles Network here.

If you're interested in joining fellow women in tech to support gender equality, you can learn more and join here.