February 13, 2022

A remark uttered in grade school and an epiphany in college set Ulupreneur Lisa Gelobter  on her life’s path. A 6th grade teacher told her, “ You’re really good at math” … and it stuck. When she was in college trying to figure out a robot project at 4 a.m., it dawned on her: “Hey, I could actually invent something new.” So, she did—and continued to do so, becoming an innovator and inventor in the Internet’s early days. She worked on Shockwave, Hulu, and what would soon become enormously popular – online entertainment. She went on to work in the White House during the Obama administration as Chief Digital Service Officer for the Department of Education.

As a Black woman in tech, she knows the obstacles faced by women and people of color. At every job she’s had, Lisa  has been, at one time or another, mistaken for an administrative assistant.

She believes that every company, at heart, is a tech company, and her tech jobs have all contributed to her growth. But it was working on College Scorecard during her White House years when Lisa realized she could make real systematic change. Having worked on transformative technologies in tech, media, and government, she wanted to apply her experience to help the underrepresented, underserved, and underestimated.

Lisa set out to craft a work culture that would work for everyone, and in 2017 built tEQuitable, a third-party, confidential platform to address bias and discrimination in the workplace. The platform provides ombuds services to address the workplace concerns of employees, recognizing that women, people of color, and other marginalized groups in particular may be uncomfortable reporting concerns directly to their company. As a complement to HR, tEQuitable helps employers identify systemic cultural issues and develops actionable recommendations for resolving them.

Lisa was Ulu’s first Black female founder; we spoke with her a few years ago about values.

Bio

Lisa Gelobter is the CEO and Founder of tEQuitable. Using technology to make workplaces more equitable, tEQuitable provides an independent, confidential platform to address issues of bias and discrimination. With 25+ years in the industry on products that have been used by billions of people, Lisa has a deep and proven track record in tech. She has worked on several pioneering Internet technologies, including Shockwave, Hulu, and the ascent of online video. Most recently, she worked at the Obama White House, serving as the Chief Digital Service Officer for the Department of Education. She had earlier tenures as the Chief Digital Officer for BET Networks and on the senior management team for the launch of Hulu. Lisa is one of Inc.‘s “100 Women Building America’s Most Innovative and Ambitious Businesses,” Fast Company’s “Most Creative People,” and spotlighted in Eric Ries’ book The Startup Way. She serves on the board and committees of the Obama Foundation, Times Up, /dev/color, and The Education Trust.

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About the Author: Rusty Dornin

Rusty Dornin is the director of marketing and communications for Ulu Ventures. An award-winning radio and television journalist, she was a CNN correspondent for nearly 18 years covering domestic and world news ranging from war to natural disasters and tales of crime and politics