Inspiring Inclusion: Celebrating the Women in Drupal | #3

A Tribute to Female Pioneers in Drupal.
Inspiring inclusion

March has come to a close, and The DropTimes has successfully concluded its "Women in Drupal" campaign. March is a month of new beginnings, renewal, and change. It marks the beginning of spring in the Northern Hemisphere and the start of autumn in the South. The rare phenomenon of March Equinox is a moment of equal daylight and darkness, which is celebrated in various cultures for its representation of balance and new beginnings. With International Women's Day celebrated at the beginning of the month to the celebration of Easter at the end of the month, March 2024 is a call out for change and renewal.  Similarly, the "Women in Drupal" series in March is a call for change! A Call to Inspire Inclusion!

As the series ends, we reflect on the powerful narratives and insightful messages shared by women Drupalers from around the globe. This initiative, launched in celebration of International Women's Day 2024, aims to amplify the voices of women within the Drupal community and showcase their achievements, challenges, and contributions to the digital world. Through the series, we've had the privilege of featuring quotes from 23 remarkable female Drupalers alongside numerous nominations, highlighting the depth and diversity of talent in the community. 

Each story shared has been a testament to the resilience, innovation, and leadership of women in Drupal, shedding light on their critical role in shaping this open-source platform's future. From developers and project managers to directors and consultants, the women featured in this series have demonstrated their technical expertise and commitment to fostering a more inclusive and supportive Drupal community.

Kat Shaw

Kat Shaw, Lead Engineer at Lullabot and Long-time Web Accessibility Specialist and Advocate (CPACC), celebrates all women Drupalers who have contributed to Drupal in so many wonderful ways. Looking around, she sees women leading and contributing to Drupal, filling her with excitement. Kat lists some initiatives led by women in the Drupal Community, which include;

"Even though things are improving for women, we still have a long way to go towards full equality. I want to see more women in leadership roles in Drupal organizations and companies. The voices of women should be heard and not interrupted. I want that glass ceiling shattered once and for all."

adds Kat.

Nneka Hector
Nneka Hector

According to Nneka Hector, director of web development at DSFederal, the Drupal community has made significant progress in promoting diversity and inclusion. She expresses her hope for ongoing efforts to foster a more welcoming environment for women and other underrepresented groups. Nneka believes that diversity brings a variety of perspectives, which in turn leads to better solutions.

Diversity happens in a number of ways, says Nneka,

  • One effective approach is to ensure diversity within your leadership and/or board of directors. If these key positions lack diversity, it becomes challenging for inclusive practices to permeate throughout the organization. And remember - diversity isn’t one-dimensional. People have multiple identities (race, gender, disability, etc.).
  • The Drupal community comprises tech companies seeking talented developers, graphic designers, and leaders. Organizations that prioritize diversity and inclusion actively hire diverse candidates. These same individuals actively participate in the Drupal community, contributing to its vibrancy and growth. 
  • To foster diversity, it’s essential to create inclusive environments where everyone feels safe, welcomed, and valued. Celebrating diversity through events like Pride Month, International Women’s Day, and Black History Month sends a powerful message about an organization’s commitment to inclusivity.  Believe it or not, diverse candidates are watching.

No individual spoke to doubt the accessibility and inclusive measures adopted by Drupal, all of them unanimously laud the community-wide undertakings to ensure Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

Nikita Aswani
Nikita Aswani

Nikita Aswani, an Acquia Certified Drupal developer, added to the conversation,

"The Drupal community excels in fostering diversity and inclusion, and initiatives like The Drop Times' effort to spotlight women's participation in Drupal underscore this commitment."

Nikita emphasizes the importance of championing individuals with potential at both the organizational and individual levels, encouraging them to step forward. She believes a simple gesture of encouragement or a word of appreciation can make a significant difference.

Nina Ogor
Nina Ogor

"While the Drupal community has made strides in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion, there's still work to be done. Instead of relying on "blind" processes, we should confront our biases head-on and actively seek out opportunities to invite underrepresented groups, including women, to the table. The world is not blind, nor does it pretend to be."

says Nina Ogor, Agile Technical Project Manager, Digital Polygon.

Nina stresses the necessity of spending more time analyzing our biases and actively working to challenge ourselves regarding preconceptions about race, gender, and socioeconomics. According to Nina, blinders do not help a situation but permit us to cling tightly to our biases.

You want to have more women in Drupal? asks Nina Ogor.

"Actively go out and invite them! It can be as simple as that. Women should be invited to the table, not because we are women but because we are human and have vast experiences that shape our lives, experiences, and yes, how we code."

Masami Suzuki

A woman Drupal Developer from Japan, Masami Suzuki, currently the general manager of Genero Inc.'s technology division, shares her experience.

"I've rarely met women Drupalers in Japan. It's not limited to Drupal. IT women engineers are much fewer than men. I've been an IT engineer for over 20 years and I really love my job. I've sometimes met some difficulties but it makes me progress if I can get over it."

Masami is a rare engineer who has been experiencing Drupal for over 13 years in Japan. She wants to share her knowledge, experience, and love of Drupal within the community, aiming to make many fellows love Drupal more and help to improve their skills.

Our next contributor is Tearyne D. A., a Customer Success Engineer - Programs at GitLab. With over eight years in the Drupal community, Tearyne has significantly contributed to accessibility through her leadership in the Drupal Diversity and Inclusion Initiative. 

Tearyne D. A.

"Having led the Drupal Diversity and Inclusion Initiative for a couple of years, the common thread I've heard is for us to increase the investment we're making in underrepresented people to make their ability to contribute to the space possible. This means time, money, and meaningful and engaged mentorship. It means sponsored contribution."

Tearyne has been pleased to observe an increase in the number of companies offering technical apprenticeships, internships, and mentorship programs. However, she has also noticed a trend among many companies toward creating positions tailored to "unicorns" - roles that combine multiple job functions into one and often require a significant level of seniority.

"In terms of Drupal Community, a huge step we can take is for our aspirationally inclusive Drupal community and the organizations within it to stop using the "open web" as a justification for continuing to platform organizations that fund and perpetuate hate, discrimination, and marginalization."

"Aligning with exploitation and corruption is often easier and more lucrative, but we need to be upfront and ask ourselves if the profit we gain in the short-term is worth the cost to the health and longevity of our community."

says Tearyne.

As a member of the Drupal Community, Anushri Kumari, Senior Software Drupal Developer at OpenSense Labs believes fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion is crucial.

Anushri Kumari

"To achieve this, we must actively support women and underrepresented groups in leadership roles, provide tailored mentorship programs, uphold a culture of respect, collaborate with diversity-focused organizations, and advocate for accessibility in our projects and events. Together, we can create a more inclusive community where everyone's contributions are valued and celebrated."

concludes Anushri.

Shefali Shetty

Shefali Shetty, Marketing Director at Specbee, and Aastha Shrivastava, Full Stack Engineer at QED42 reminisce about their warm and welcoming experiences with the Drupal Community.

"I've always felt welcomed in the Drupal community since the beginning of my journey. However, everyone's experience varies based on the people they are surrounded by. So, all community members be kinder than you have to be and make the newcomers feel included."

commented Shefali while Aastha spoke about her DrupalCon debut. 

Aastha Shrivastava

Last year, Aastha attended her first Drupal con and was amazed at how much effort was made to ensure everyone felt included. She would like to see more of these initiatives at a local level.

"Drupal events generally have a good ratio of women managing a lot of things in the backend, but I would like to see more of them on stage! More diverse speakers, hosts, and presenters, more diversity in the front, please!"

requests Aastha.

Libbna Mathew

To her fellow Drupalers, Libbna Mathew, a Full-Stack Engineer at QED42, would like to convey the empowering message that your contributions matter, regardless of your gender. Whether you're a seasoned developer, a newcomer exploring the world of open source, or someone who supports the community in other ways, your unique perspective and skills enrich the Drupal ecosystem. 

"Embrace your voice, share your ideas, and continue striving to make Drupal a more inclusive and welcoming space for everyone. Together, we can build a brighter future for the Drupal community and beyond."

rightfully concludes Libbna.

As we drop the curtain on this series, The DropTimes extends heartfelt gratitude to all the participants, nominators, and readers who joined us in celebrating these inspiring women. The conversations ignited, and the connections formed through this series are just the beginning. Let's continue to support and uplift each other, ensuring that every voice in the Drupal community is heard and valued. 

Here's to the incredible women of Drupal—may we all be inspired by their stories and motivated to contribute to a community that thrives on diversity, collaboration, and innovation.

Let's Inspire Inclusion!

Note: The vision of this web portal is to help promote news and stories around the Drupal community and promote and celebrate the people and organizations in the community. We strive to create and distribute our content based on these content policy. If you see any omission/variation on this please let us know in the comments below and we will try to address the issue as best we can.

Related Organizations

Advertisement Here

Upcoming Events

Advertisement Here