During the month of March, we celebrate women—the roles they’ve played in history, and how they have influenced our careers and lives. 

Women’s History Month is celebrated in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia. In 1978, it started out as week-long commemoration in Sonoma County, Calif. But the origin goes back a bit further to 1911, when the first International Women’s Day was celebrated. The Celebration in California was a week-long event designed around March 8 (International Women’s Day). In 1980, it became recognized as a national week, and then a month-long celebration every March in 1987. 

Below, we’ve rounded up some of the ways we at LaunchDarkly have been spending the month celebrating and recognizing all those who identify as women.

Giving back to worthwhile causes

Within our company, we shared a list of organizations that focus on supporting people who identify as girls and women and encouraged our team to donate as LaunchDarkly is matching all employee contributions. 

If you’re interested in contributing individually, here are a few of the organizations we've been giving to: 

Writing about being a mom in tech

Our Director of Corporate Marketing, Andrea Echstenkamper, shared her experiences in becoming a first-time mom while working in tech.

Women are often told not to talk about being a mom because it will look like you’re not serious about your career. Personally, I have never followed this advice. I’ve given talks explaining DevOps principles through the lens of parenting. This should be the norm, because you should be allowed to bring your whole self to work. 

I’m grateful for Andrea for sharing her experience, and while it may not be the same as others, it has started a much-needed conversation. When her blog post was shared internally, it led to a discussion on a public Slack channel about breastfeeding and perimenopause.

I want to see more conversations like these, which should be embraced rather than hidden. 

Watching notable films and series 

Following on the success of our virtual movie series for Black History Month, we again held viewing parties to watch movies together. Here are some of the films we streamed virtually together:

  • "Daughters of Destiny" - A four-part docuseries that follows five girls from an impoverished neighborhood in India as they attend a boarding school to create new opportunities for themselves. 

  • "Betty White: First Lady in Television" - A documentary film chronicling the life of the comedic icon.

  • "Homecoming: A Film by Beyoncé" -  Written, directed, and produced by Beyoncé, this documentary follows the legendary musician’s journey that led to her 2018 Coachella performance. 

Reading up 

Our reading list's goal is to highlight diversity in the topics, authors, and genres. We've been sharing over 20 books across fiction, non-fiction, memoirs, poetry, young adult, and contemporary, just to name a few.  

Here’s a few of the books we have highlighted:

"Hood Feminism" - This collection of essays by Mikki Kendall focuses on how feminism has been largely centered on white women while ignoring issues like food security, access to education, and living in a safe neighborhood. 

"Dear Girls" - Author and comedienne Ali Wong shares letters on life with her young daughters. 

"Untamed" - This memoir by Glennon Doyle centers around her giving up living her life based on other’s expectations.  

"The Farm" - This novel from Joanne Ramos revolves around women being paid to be surrogates at a luxury retreat. The women are are also cut off from their former life until they give birth to a child, which will eventually be raised by someone else. 

"The Alice Network" - Kate Quinn’s fictional account of the real-life spy network used during World War II.

Celebrating our Dark Launchers 

Finally, we created a slide show of some of the amazing women-identifying LaunchDarkly employees. An open invitation internally was extended for people to share a bit about themselves, their role, and who has inspired them professionally. Since LaunchDarkly continues to grow, and so many people have started over the last year, the resulting display was a nice way to spend a little time getting to know our teammates (some of whom we’ve never met in person). 

Even though March is over, it doesn’t mean your learning and recognition of women should end. Recognize and celebrate the women you work with, amplify their voices, and sponsor and mentor them. 

If you’re ready to start or continue your career at LaunchDarkly, check out our open opportunities