Mayor Ras J. Baraka and Rainbow PUSH Coalition President and Founder Reverend Jesse L. Jackson will host a summit about leveraging technology for economic success at Rutgers-Newark on June 2nd. Entitled “PUSHing Technology to Achieve Economic Success, ” the event will be held at the Paul Robeson Campus Center, located at 350 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard in downtown Newark.
The one day state-wide event will convene over 200 corporate executives, small business owners, entrepreneurs, academics, and community and faith leaders to discuss the role of technology in the economic development and growth of New Jersey. Its primary goal is to encourage tech education, training, programs and strategic partnerships to ensure New Jersey’s diverse communities are better prepared to take full advantage of tech-driven economic opportunities.
In a nod to the importance of preparing today’s youth to be competitive in the tech space, the summit will also host a youth seminar. That session will feature discussion of career opportunities in technology, as well as a hands-on introduction to coding.
“Today’s business owners, entrepreneurs, and employees must be prepared to compete in a high tech global economy…As the largest city in New Jersey, Newark is transforming itself with groundbreaking initiatives in public safety, economic development, housing and community engagement. We are looking to lead the way in highlighting the importance technology is playing in our continued economic growth,” commented Mayor Baraka.
Rev. Jackson added, “[The Rainbow PUSH Wall Street Project] serves as a catalyst for aggressive change in the areas of procurement, employment, corporate board diversity and access to capital. During our 18th annual Wall Street Project Economic Summit held this past January, we focused on innovative approaches that corporations and minority entrepreneurs are taking to improve economic diversity,
as well as a focus on the lack of diversity in the tech industry. We look to broaden this discussion at the summit in Newark.”
The summit will feature remarks from Rutgers University-Newark Chancellor Dr. Nancy Cantor and State Senator Ronald L. Rice, and will spotlight scholars from Rutgers University and the New Jersey Institute of Technology, who will present information on the most innovative practices for urban economic development, what manufacturing opportunities look like in New Jersey, and what the public and private sector should be doing to drive the growth of the state’s urban centers.
Author and Power Patterns of Innovation CEO Sarah Miller Caldicott, the great-grandniece of inventor Thomas Edison, will discuss her great uncle’s collaboration process as a means to re-skill workers for the digital age, leverage social networks, and propel innovation during the summit’s lunch program. That will be followed Reverend Jackson’s one-on-one conversation with Donald R. Katz, Founder & CEO of
Audible.com., and a panel of New Jersey mayors including Newark Mayor Ras Baraka, Hillside Mayor Angela R. Garretson, Clinton Mayor Janice Kovach, Plainfield Mayor Adrian O. Mapp, and Logan Township Mayor Frank Minor, moderated by Newark municipal council President Mildred Crump.
The summit will conclude with Rev. Jackson and Mayor Baraka presenting a wrap-up and next steps on how to continue the dialogue around technology, and create strategic partnerships that encourage diversity, building scalable solutions to address and reduce economic disparities, bridging the digital divide, and catalyzing community transformations.