Rhianon Anderson is passionate about the tech community, and especially about the policy arenas surrounding diversity, STEM education, talent retention, and pipeline issues.
She most recently was the Executive Director of the Congressional App Challenge, a bipartisan congressional initiative intended to encourage students across the country to learn how to code. In her role, she launched and oversaw the execution of more than 240 app challenges in congressional districts across 33 states. She instituted deliberate diversity-supporting and -tracking efforts as part of the program; of the nearly 4000 students who’ve coded original apps during the project’s first 2 cycles, more than 30% were young women.
Prior to moving to DC to run the Congressional App Challenge, she received her Master’s in Public Policy from UCLA, where she focused on technology policy. At UCLA, Rhianon worked as a consultant for government entities like LADWP, while researching economic development mechanisms to support the growth of startup communities for her thesis.
She also worked at the Luskin Center for Innovation, examining conditions for women and other underrepresented demographic groups within the tech community. Her research supported the creation of a conference on women in tech that has since been turned into an annual event, and her work was published in a report called “What Are We Missing? Rethinking Public, Private and Nonprofit Strategies to Advance Women in Technology.”