Roshawnna Novellus

Tell us about your background: What do you do now, where did you get your start?

Roshawnna Novellus (CEO) is well-versed in the use of crowdfunding techniques, having raised over $600,000 in donations and scholarships to pay for her college education. Roshawnna holds a Doctor of Science in Systems Engineering and Finance from the George Washington University, a MS in Information Technology from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, a BA in Business Management Economics, and a BS in Computer Engineering from the University of California.

How do you believe you use your strengths in the context of your work?

The idea for EnrichHER originated from founder Roshawnna Novellus’ desire to close the gap in equity funding for women. Years ago, she was so impressed by the funding model for Lending Club that she developed an algorithm using the information available from Lending Club to ensure that the effective rate of return in invested loans would exceed 12%. Using her methodology, she successfully invested in 200 loans on the platform. After her success with the loan repayment algorithm , she decided to use her background and experience to help create a solution for the underserved marketplace for women. If Lending Club could attract so many funding sources, then certainly a platform targeting women-led businesses could do the same or better since the success rate for women-led businesses is higher and women are more likely to repay loans than men. For these reasons, she founded EnrichHER to become a great solution to change the current status quo in lending to women-led businesses. We know that women need what we are offering because they have repeatedly told us – in interviews, at our conferences, and during their pitches. Even women entrepreneurs who have successfully raised capital had to make more pitches and endure discrimination and even harassment on the road to raising capital. Because of this, EnrichHER has amassed a database of over 2000 entrepreneurs who want to use the platform.

Who or what motivates you?

Each of us is on earth to make it better through the benevolent use of our skills. Each time I help a women-led business, I believe that I am fulfilling my purpose. Providing capital for women-led businesses enables economic empowerment, inclusive economic growth, and overall gender equality. As the number of sustainable women-led businesses increases, society will benefit from inclusive job growth and an increased array of products and services that better reflect the input of women.

What is the best piece of advice you ever received?

If you want money, ask for advice. If you want advice, ask for money.

The Women in Tech campaign exists to help redefine what women in technology means in the 21st century. Started independently by a group of professional women who, after many impassioned discussions about women in tech knew we wanted to expand this definition beyond ‘traditional’ technology skills. To us, it includes most every current, emerging or evolving role within an organization. By featuring leaders and emerging leaders across industries who embody this we hope to collectively ‘stand up’, be proud of our place in the digital world and inspire young women or those new to the ‘tech space’ to get involved.

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