Today’s blog is authored by Leona Locke, Director, GTM Benefits and Partner Engagement, with contributions from Gena Goh, the lead for the Microsoft #BuildFor2030 Initiative, and Regina Johnson, a lead for the Microsoft Black Partner Growth Initiative and advocate for Women in Cloud and the Women in Tech Network.

To honor International Women’s Day and Women’s History Month this March, while coming out of Black History Month in the US, we’re thrilled to continue highlighting trailblazing women in tech and their solutions that are benefitting industries and communities around the world.   

As a woman who has learned lifelong lessons from an incredible group of strong and powerful women in my family via mentoring relationships and my engagement in community organizations, Microsoft’s focus on enabling inclusive economic opportunity is dear to me and has been critical to my career and personal journey. The strength from these powerful women has shown me the importance of using my voice, advocating for others, and uplifting role models in our communities.

In this current market environment, the need to empower women-owned and led businesses in our partner ecosystem is more critical than ever. Based on the World Economic Forum’s Global Gap Report 2022, the global gender gap has been closed to 68.1% and at the current rate of progress, it will take 132 years for all women to reach full parity.

Many customers recognize their role in helping close this gap and are prioritizing diversity in their supply chains. Corporate members from the Billion Dollar Roundtable, a nonprofit that advocates for diverse business enterprises worldwide, spent $96 billion with diverse suppliers in the US in 2022.

To enable customers to connect with minority and women-owned businesses in our partner ecosystem, Microsoft has enabled partners to attest and upload certifications within their Partner Center company profile, so that they can be discoverable on the marketplace and through our co-sell channels.

Celebrating women leaders and their impact in our partner ecosystem

Since 2020, we have engaged and showcased more than 30 women-owned businesses as part of the Microsoft #BuildFor2030 Initiative. This initiative is focused on raising awareness and support for advancing the UN Sustainable Development Goals by accelerating innovation, changemaking, and the collective impact made possible with our global partner ecosystem.

Additionally, through channel ecosystem partner programs like the Microsoft Black Partner Growth Initiative, we focus on providing access to resources and support for the Black partner business community — including many Black and women-owned businesses — to increase opportunities for economic growth and business sustainability.

Join in celebrating these women and their trailblazing innovations in across industries from healthcare to sustainability, and business functional areas such as workplace collaboration and procurement:

  • Ethnomet: Garnette Weber is CEO of Ethnomet — a virtual healthcare platform that helps increase access to quality healthcare for women in Nigeria, enabling patients to connect virtually with a global network of licensed healthcare providers, find providers by area of specialization, and better manage their medical information. Ethnomet was recognized as the #BuildFor2030 Hackathon 2022 – Gender equality theme winner.
  • Plan Heal: Tammy McMiller is co-founder & CEO of Plan Heal, a predictive health monitoring platform that automates and scales real-time disease and risk detection. Plan Heal supports the patient, provider, and payor with personalized patient health information to enable efficient decision support, better health outcomes, and lower care costs.

Watch Garnette Weber and Tammy McMiller, discuss how they’re transforming healthcare on the Microsoft Partner Innovation Vodcast:

  • Earth Knowledge: Julia Armstrong D’Agnese is CEO and co-founder of Earth Knowledge. Its Foresight Platform is providing institutions with forward-looking planetary intelligence that helps companies mitigate future risk and guides investment decisions, bringing clarity to the economic risk of climate change and biodiversity loss. Watch this video to learn how Julia and her company drive sustainable innovation.
  • Friendly Flows: Harmke Alkemade is the co-founder of Friendly Flows, which enables solutions like SkillScape, a solution that enables employees to build powerful knowledge and skills communities on Microsoft Teams together with their colleagues to develop new skills, enrich their network, and get work done faster. Learn about Harmke’s journey building her solution with the commercial marketplace.
  • Stimulus: Tiffanie Stanard is the CEO of Stimulus, a relationship intelligence SaaS platform that combines data insights, relationship-building tools and a proprietary score to help companies make the best purchasing decisions and optimize their supplier ecosystems. Learn more about Tiffanie’s innovative solution for customers.

Find these solutions on the #BuildFor2030 solutions gallery.

What you can do to learn and make a difference

Through our collective effort, we can continue to contribute and make progress to close the gender gap. We invite you to learn more, connect with us, and join in making a difference.

  • Attest as minority-owned or woman-owned business in Partner Center. Join our community event on April 19 to learn more about supplier diversity and marketplace opportunities.
  • Get engaged with partner-led organizations such as Women in Cloud (WIC) The WIT Network (WIT), the International Association of Microsoft Channel Partners (IAMCP), and the Black Channel Partner Alliance (BCPA).
  • Share with your network women- or minority-owned/led businesses that are making an impact in our global community and paving the way for future generations.
  • Join or amplify our initiatives focused on enabling inclusive economic growth:
    • Microsoft Black Partner Growth Initiative (BPGI)
    • Microsoft #BuildFor2030 Initiative (#BuildFor2030)


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