If you thought Monday’s tech discussion would be some wrinky-dink meet up you were sadly mistaken. Newark’s 1st Tech Town Hall was the place to be for a high energy and inspirational tech talk. Over 100 techies, community leaders, and citizens filed in by the minute to hear what the future of technology was for Newark. As time drew nearer to the start of the evening, from entrance to exit you could see countless heads peeking through any gap they could find to get an ear of the discussion.
Few attendees waiting in anticipation of the night’s discussion and activities
SPACE (Equal Space) the 3,000 square foot share-space grew packed from wall to wall in anticipation of the night’s agenda.
Honorable Mayor Ras J. Baraka delivered an energetic and upbeat Q&A discussion along with moderators Anthony Frasier and Chrishan Wright that kept the attendees intrigued. All eyes were glued to the Mayor as he began to pour out his take on the future of technology in Newark.
He also touched on the false belief that “…we need to go outside to bring people into this community [Newark]”, but supported that , “there are hundreds of people already who are doing the things we expect others to come to Newark and do.” Others heavyweights who offered valuable insight were Congressman Donald Payne Jr., along with Tom Wisniewski (Executive Director, Newark Venture Partner), Jamaal O’Garro (co-founder of Code Crew), Judith Sheft (associate vice president of technology at NJIT) and Tas Peterson (founder of Tap Factory). Also present was Clayton Banks (co-founder of Silicon Harlem) who spoke of finalizing a mutual operating agreement with Equal Space and partners from Philadelphia.
Seth talking about exciting new tech savvy projects coming to Newark. Be on the look out!
By the end of the night any uncertainty in the future of Newark was dispelled. Citizens and techies alike left the 8 storey building feeling more inspired and ready to take on the tech world than ever. Some of the things you could hear around the each corner was was, “Wow, I didn’t know that Newark this” and “Its feels good to know that the City of Newark believes in it’s own talent.”
The night ended with exchanges of business cards and a loads of people eager to network and connect with one another. The night was an overwhelming success raising incredible awareness and attention to the potential of Newark.