With prestigious educational institutions like MIT, Harvard and Cambridge situated in and around Boston, which is a technology hub, it is only to be expected that the city will also be an entrepreneurial hotspot.
These tech universities provide rich intellectual resources – patents, know-how and cutting edge innovation – on which entrepreneurs can capitalize.
Interestingly, the ecosphere of flourishing technology is dotted with some spirited business women who are making their way to the top of the entrepreneur list. Though the journey to success is challenging for women in this male-dominated territory, they have managed to hold their own through hard work and perseverance.
Beth Marcus – Founder & CEO, Playrific
Beth Marcus has founded and served as a CEO for several start-ups. She supports and encourages young girls to get into IT and has been involved in 20 start-ups. She is a consultant providing patent strategy, litigation support and other strategic technology related services. Beth is also a founder of EXOS which was later sold to Microsoft Inc. Beth has a Ph.D. in biomechanics and has a background of Mechanical Engineering from MIT.
Says Beth, “If you’re trying to build widget A, and nobody wants widget A, but in order to make widget A, you had to make a fixture. And it turns out loads of people want that fixture, well go sell a fixture. Don’t keep trying to sell a widget that nobody wants.”
Sheila Lirio Marcelo – Founder & CEO, Care.com
Sheila Lirio launched Care.com to help families find high-quality caregivers. This company is the top online destination for finding and managing family care. Sheila comes from an entrepreneurial family and holds a degree from Harvard University. Sheila started out as a young mother with two small children and was part of the “sandwich generation” caring for her parents at an early age.
Sheila had challenges finding quality care solutions, and frustrated with the options set out to leverage technology for millions of people looking for quality caregivers. Marcelo is one of those rare entrepreneurs in Boston trying to build a consumer-oriented Internet business. She has also raised millions of dollars in venture funding for Care.com.
Laura Fitton – Founder & CEO, Oneforty
Co-author of ‘Twitter for Dummies’, Fitton also created a start-up, Oneforty, to organize useful software that worked with Twitter. Fitton holds a degree from Cornell University.
Laura uses twitter to show people a way to make to make/raise money. In 2008, Fitton initiated one of the first fundraising campaigns on twitter, raising $25,000 for charity. She is one of the most influential people in technology.
Jean Hammond – Angel Investor
After a successful career as a data networking entrepreneur, Hammond has become one of Boston’s most active and well-connected angel investors, backing start-ups like Zipcar, Crimson Hexagon, and Ten Marks. Jean holds a BS from Boston University and MS from MIT. Jean is a prolific figure in the start-up world: she mentors fledgling start-ups through TechStars which invests in women- managed businesses. Jean is a serial entrepreneur with over 20 years of experience in technology.
Boston’s cluster of historic universities has earned it the nickname, “The Athens of America”. Apart from its proximity to technology leaders MIT and Harvard, the city also boasts other prestigious universities which are among the world’s top 100. As a result Boston has towering intellectuals and highly rated women entrepreneurs.