Each year CTN celebrates champions of digital inclusion, recognizing incredible people who are doing amazing work to bridge the technology divide and raise levels of digital literacy within our city’s underserved communities.
Purchase tickets here (early bird prices end on June 3rd) for the Digital Leaders Awards happening on June 26th and Twitter’s HQ in San Francisco!
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Winners of the 2019 Digital Leaders Awards:
Digital Champion– Katherine Eppler, Program Manager, The Bridge at Main
Kate Eppler is the program manager for San Francisco Public Library’s The Bridge at Main, a literacy and learning center with a focus on digital literacy and technology skill-building. More than 2,000 people every year attend free classes and technology help sessions at the Bridge. Eppler coordinates San Francisco’s award winning Connect with Tech Week, which brings community partners from nonprofit, business and government together to produce a vibrant week of technology education events. She has developed and implemented technology classes of all levels, as well as maker programming, information literacy instruction, and other opportunities to help users better understand their world.
Digital Changemaker – Cordelia McGee-Tubb, CTN Volunteer
Cordelia has been a consistent aid to other CTN programs and continues to do wonderful work as a volunteer at Curry Senior Center’s Senior Vitality Program. Cordelia takes her role as a tutor above and beyond what is required of her. On a weekly basis, Cordelia not only gives detailed input about her tutoring times with individual students, but asks questions and voices concerns about their learning. She vocalizes ideas for the program and suggestions for learners. She also improves the seniors’ interaction with their iPads with her background knowledge in accessibility features for technology (which the instructors and Curry staff admit they have little experience with). Cordelia even reaches out to her own community, sharing her experiences at Senior Vitality in hopes of encouraging others to be aware and potentially be future tutors.
Digital Inclusion in the Community – Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired
Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired incorporates digital skills throughout its training programs for those living with low vision or blindness, aimed at orientation, mobility, employment and overall independent living. They are also leading experts in advising companies and developers in designing accessible technology.
Digital Bridge Builder – Monkeybrains
Monkeybrains and San Francisco Housing Development Corporation worked together to provide free high speed internet to residents in several of their properties. Providing this type of internet access is a game changer for people living in poverty and should be replicated across the county. Monkeybrains has also worked with volunteers who have helped residents understand how to set up their wireless routers in order to connect.
Digital Amplifier – Metta Fund
Metta Fund is a new funder to this space. They realized that social isolation affects health and saw an opportunity to address this through access to technology. They provided seed funds to Little Brother Friends of the Elderly to start the Tech Allies program in partnership with CTN. The program was funded in 2016 and since then they’ve been able to get over 75 seniors connected at home to a device, internet and training. They recently funded CTN to deliver a similar program called Sunset Tech Connect that will help monolingual Cantonese speakers access tablets and training.
CTN is a nonprofit on a mission to transform lives through digital literacy. Our work in San Francisco helps low-income adults and seniors tap into the power of the internet and gain the critical basic digital literacy skills they need. Each day, dozens of our volunteer trainers work in community hubs to support some of the 100,000 people in the City who still lack internet access or who need training on how to apply for jobs, communicate with friends and family, research health information, and so much more. Hosted by Twitter, The Digital Leaders Awards is a celebration which brings together volunteers, community and nonprofit workers, philanthropists, and business people to honor the people leading the digital inclusion movement in the region.