31 Dec Letter from Outgoing OKWIT President, Katy Battiest
It may be hard to believe, but we have officially made it through 2020! On this last day of 2020 and my final day as President of OKWIT, I am reflecting on all that OKWIT has accomplished these past two years.
In two years, OKWIT has:
- Doubled scholarship dollars given to women pursuing undergraduate or graduate STEM degrees.
- Launched a tiered-membership program to provide longevity and targeted programming for STEM professionals.
- Expanded our leadership structure to enable the continued growth of programming and offer more opportunities for volunteers to grow as leaders.
- Held 56 events for our member base of nearly 1,800 members.
- Hosted three high school retreats, including our first in-person retreat in Tulsa and our first ever Virtual Retreat with 700 attendees from across the state.
- Pivoted in 2020 to completely convert programming to a virtual environment.
All of these achievements are made possible because of you, our Members, Leaders, Volunteers, Sponsors, and Donors. THANK YOU for being a part of this organization! I am so proud to know you.
2020 has presented us with more challenges than we could have ever imagined. At the same time, it has brought unexpected positive growth I will never forget. We have been stretched in many ways—handling massive change to our day-to-day lives, challenging our ways of thinking in regards to inclusivity, and completely changing how we provide a community for those passionate about bridging the gender gap in STEM fields. Once again, because of our inspiring leaders and volunteers, we were able to accomplish amazing things! In 2020, OKWIT expanded our reach beyond the borders of our state and country, had new attendees who have never been able to attend in-person events, and opened up opportunities to ask each other tough questions to make sure our organization is working to find solutions to professional and social challenges our members face on a regular basis.
I am incredibly grateful for these past two years; no other work in my life has been as rewarding as this role. Thank you for trusting me with the opportunity to serve as your second OKWIT President. As I transition out of this role, I am thrilled to welcome Ashley Coffey as the next President of Oklahoma Women in Technology! I have had the great joy of working alongside Ashley for several years, and can’t wait to see her leadership next year.
In 2021, OKWIT will celebrate its 5th year, and there are a lot of exciting things to come. Our 2021 leadership team is filled with incredible, energetic people—please keep watch after the New Year as we introduce them to you!
It has truly been an honor to serve as your OKWIT president, and I can’t wait to see what amazing things our new leadership team accomplishes in the coming months and years. Thank you for your continued support of OKWIT.
Cheers, and Happy New Year!
Outgoing President, OKWIT