The Premier sets his eyes on Álvaro Fernández, of Juvenil C

first_imgÁlvaro Fernández For years it has been attracting the attention of analysts in the lower categories. Madrid went ahead in their transfer to Barça three years ago when the boy, who is from Ferrol, excelled in the Cadet of Deportivo de A Coruña. The other great left-back at the time was Jesús Vázquez, Braulio’s son, who was Valencia’s top scorer and now Osasuna’s sports director. The boy preferred to stay at Valencia.Well, Álvaro Fernández grew up in Cadet A of Madrid (trained by Tristán Celador), although in tough competition with De la Víbora, another left-handed winger with a projection with whom this year he has shared a wardrobe in Juvenil C. Alvaro Fernández played as a winger and De La Víbora ahead, almost extreme. Thus they have been combined. Madrid wants to renew the Galician left-hander to ensure a future left-wing category, but the Premier press with Alvaro Fernández … Álvaro Fernández Carreras (left-back of Juvenil C of Madrid, 17 years old) is being closely followed by the Premier, especially by the Manchester clubs, who have come to see him this season in various games in Valdebebas with his network of scouts, AS could know. The situation is as follows: the boy ends his current contract with the white club on June 30 and his wish would be to renew and keep growing in Madrid. But for ten months the Premier has set its sights on him and logically that is tempting for the kid, who when free could negotiate with them without any ties contractual.last_img read more

Foote faces battle for life

first_img KNEE CANCER Having had his left leg amputated due to life-threatening bone cancer, former outstanding Holy Trinity High School footballer Jordan Foote is locked in a race for his life, with doctors working to prevent the cancer from taking over his body. Foote’s Manning Cup coach Devon Anderson has revealed that the youngster has had to put his request for a prosthetic leg on hold, to instead focus on surviving the cancer affecting his lungs. Foote is admitted to the University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI) Anderson, who admitted to sharing a fatherly relationship with the player, wants the public to keep him in their prayers as he seeks to recuperate. “They are seeing signs of improvement with the hole in his lungs healing back because of medications. “In terms of getting a prosthetic leg, it has to be on hold for now, after this last X-ray, we will know where we go from here,” said Anderson. “They are trying to patch the part of the lungs that is leaking liquid, and draining off the water from his chest. He is deteriorating due to the cancer,” Anderson continued. Foote helped his former school to the inaugural Flow Super Cup final, but was ruled out of last season’s Manning Cup competition due to cancer in his knee. He has since had his left leg amputated. He had to leave school prematurely after being sent home to recuperate with his family. Anderson, who has maintained a close relationship with Foote said the youngster remains upbeat despite the challenges. “Jordan is the type of person who is motivated, success driven and as an athlete, always wants to win and cries when he loses. He is a hardworking youth” Anderson said. Anderson, who works closely alongside Foote’s mother, Nadine Sutherland, added: “We just have to hope for the best but expect the worst, and know if the inevitable comes, it comes, but I hope it doesn’t come for now.”last_img read more

‘More cohesive’ Blackwater getting the job done

first_imgPhivolcs records 2 ‘discrete weak ash explosions’ at Taal Volcano GALLERY: Barangay Ginebra back as PBA Governors’ Cup kings DiGregorio has played a huge part in that spurt, shooting 50-percent from thre  to average 23.5 points, 4.0 assists, and 3.0 rebounds in the Elite’s last two victories.His blazing performance was the reason why the Elite broke away from the Picanto in the third period, firing 14 of his 21 points in the frame to give his team a much-needed 77-65 cushion.DiGregorio, though, said that with how things are going with Blackwater, anybody can be the hero for the squad any given day.“It just so happens that I had the hot hand, the big game. But we have a lot of good players,” he said. “The last two games were my night, the next two could be Allein’s night, Mac’s night. Poy has been a beast and he’s playing great every single game. It just so happened that I have the hot hand the last two games, but it could be anybody.”The Elite aim to formalize their entry to the quarterfinals when they take on NLEX on Sunday and Phoenix on Wednesday.ADVERTISEMENT Nueva Ecija warehouse making fake cigarettes raided, 29 Chinese workers nabbed It took time, but the Elite are finally playing to their potential. They scored an upset over San Miguel last week before doubling down on the Picanto on Friday.“I think we have a great team. I think Poy (Erram) is a great player, same with Mac Belo, Allein (Maliksi). We also have great role players and veterans,” said DiGregorio.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkDiGregorio is crediting this belated Blackwater run for a playoff berth to players sticking to their roles.“Nothing changed really. We’ve just been playing a lot more cohesive and more as a team. We’re jelling a lot more together,” he said. Sea turtle trapped in net freed in Legazpi City Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours LATEST STORIES “We took care of our first game, but the job’s not done. If we take care of the next two, then there won’t be any problem,” said DiGregorio. “Our fate is in our hands. If we take care of business, we have a great chance.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next It’s too early to present Duterte’s ‘legacy’ – Lacson View comments MOST READ UK plans Brexit celebrations but warns businesses may suffer Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Raqraquin, San Beda not discouraged by NCAA Finals game 1 loss Phivolcs records 2 ‘discrete weak ash explosions’ at Taal Volcano Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netWith Blackwater winning its last two games, Mike DiGregorio likes his side’s odds of making it to the 2018 PBA Philippine Cup quarterfinals.“I think our chances are great,” he said as the Elite improved to 4-5 after a 95-76 win over Kia. “We hold our own destiny if we take care of business.”ADVERTISEMENTlast_img read more

Huskies hang on for victory over the Sexsmith Vipers Saturday night

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Fort St. John Huskies survived a close one with the Sexsmith Vipers at the North Peace Arena on Saturday night.Gary Loewen opened the scoring with 14:05 remaining in the first frame after Nolan Legace and Geoff Dick worked the puck along the boards before finding a wide open Loewen in the slot. Two minutes and five seconds later Matthew Apsassin scored on the power play after depositing a rebound off a shot from Jeridyn Loewen along the blueline to make it 2-0. Three minutes after the visitors cut the lead in half 2-1, Geoff Dick beat the Vipers goaltender with a wicked wrister, assisted by Jarod Lang and Sebastian Powsey. Twenty-two seconds later Dick scored his second of the period after accepting a saucer pass on an odd-man rush with Gary Loewen, Jarod Lang with the secondary assist. After one period of play, the Huskies lead by the score of 4-1.The middle stanza remained scoreless until Dane Bateman riffled one home from the far point with 5:47 to play, assisted by Matthew Apsassin and Cody Brodhagen. The Huskies skated into the second intermission with the only goal of the frame and a 5-1 lead.- Advertisement -The Huskies played on their heels in what was a wild third period. Geoff Dick and Alex Hartman both dropped the gloves midway through the final stanza as tempers boiled over. The Vipers used that momentum and undisciplined play from the home side to score two late goals to make it interesting, ultimately the Huskies escaped with a 5-3 win.Geoff Dick and Jarod Lang led the team with three points apiece, while Matthew Apsassin and Gary Loewen each chipped in with two-point outings.“We have a tendency to play down to teams below us in the standings level and that’s exactly what happened in the third period,” said Sebastian Powsey. “It’s been a long week and thankfully that game is over and we came out with the win as the team will use the coming days to recuperate before our next game on Wednesday.”Advertisement “We played 35-40 minutes of our style of game then we let them dictate the pace and make things interesting with two goals in the third period,” added assistant coach Todd Alexander. “We have to learn to play a full 60 minutes of hockey game after game no matter who the team is or what their record says.” The Pups will be looking for redemption on Wednesday when they clash with Dawson Creek at the North Peace Arena, after losing to them less than a week ago. Puck drop is at 8:00 p.m.last_img read more

Pay caps helpful to city, for now

first_img“There were some people who retired before the cap was implemented who received more than 100 percent (of their salaries),” said Weintraub, adding he did not know offhand how many of the city’s retirees are making more than 100 percent of their last active year’s salary. “That is why the council negotiated the cap with the employee unions at 100 percent.”El Monte’s practice of paying its employees a higher rate in retirement benefits means its employees can reach the 100 percent threshold in a shorter period of time.Pasadena, Pomona and West Covina compensate retired employees at rates ranging from 2 percent to 2.5 percent at age 55. So if a Pasadena employee were to retire at 55 after working 30 years with the city, he or she would receive 75 percent of his or her final year salary per year in retirement, based on the city’s 2.5 percent at 55 formula.If that same employee were to work 40 years, he or she would get paid 100 percent of their final year salary. And if they stayed on the payroll until age 70, they would receive 13 percent more per year in retirement than they were paid while working for the city. El Monte is one of the only major cities in the San Gabriel Valley whose workers cannot earn more in retirement than what they made as employees, according to city officials.El Monte, with a population of 126,000, pays its non-law enforcement retirees about 3 percent of their highest yearly salary for every year worked until age 55 — at least half a percent more than its counterpart cities with more than 100,000 population in the Valley. But it caps those benefits at 100 percent of the total they were making per year at retirement time, said Matthew Weintraub, a city spokesman.The other 100,000-plus cities — Pasadena, Pomona and West Covina — do not place caps on their general employees’ retirement benefits. El Monte capped its benefits, according to Weintraub, because of residents’ concerns that the plan made it too easy for the employees to earn more as retirees than as active workers. But El Monte pays its general employees a 3 percent rate if they retire at age 55 and above. That means an El Monte employee with 30 years of service by age 55 would only need to work until age 59 to make 102 percent of their last year’s salary in retirement.West Covina pays its retired employees the same rate as Pasadena — 2.5 percent at 55. Pomona was the most frugal of the cities, paying 2 percent at 55. That means a Pomona employee with 30 years under his or her belt at 55 would make only 60 percent of his or her final year’s salary. They would have to work until age 75 to get up to 100 percent.All four cities compensate public safety employees under a different formula — 3 percent at age 50 — but cap benefits at 90 percent of final year salary. That’s because police and firefighters are usually paid more than general employees and typically reach their 3 percent threshold at age 50, said Ed Fong, a spokesman for CalPERS, which manages pensions for most California public agencies.“With 3 percent at 50 or 55, if you have someone able to work a long time you would be getting into the 100 percent range and beyond a lot more (without caps),” said Fong.Fong said most cities do not place caps on retirement benefits for non-public safety employees, likely because those who make it to the roughly 40 years of employment needed to reach 100 percent benefits are rare.“The average CalPERS retiree retires somewhere short of 20 years of service,” Fong said. “Thirty years or more is not typical.”That is the case in Pasadena, said Janice Torres, that city’s recruitment manager.“It is pretty rare when employees go beyond 100 percent,” she said.El Monte Mayor Ernie Gutierrez said capping general employees’ retirement benefits was necessary in order to avoid leaving future councils with an undue financial burden.“We don’t want to have our retired people making more money than they did when they were employed,” Gutierrez said.Capping retirement benefits could be a way to alleviate some of the burgeoning pension costs facing cities as the baby boomer generation reaches retirement age, said Alec Levenson, a labor expert at the Center for Effective Organization at USC’s Marshall School of Business.“To cap at 100 percent does not seem to me a particular hardship,” said Levenson. “But it also depends on what percentage of employees are getting more than 100 percent in retirement benefits. If it is only 2 to 5 percent, it may be a case of making a mountain out of a molehill.”El Monte’s caps could end up backfiring in the long run by causing the city to lose its competitive edge in recruiting city employees, Weintraub said.“In the short term this addresses the community’s concerns,” said Weintraub, adding that some employees with many years invested in the city were upset at the 100 percent cap. “But in the long term we may have shot ourselves in the foot by losing high quality, high-value individuals who know the community but who might leave for better benefits elsewhere.” 962-8811, Ext. 2306160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

PREP-JC ROUNDUP Torrance golfers stand out

first_imgIn the Bay League … Mira Costa 221, South Torrance 256; Mira Costa’s Lori Harper shot a 4-over-par 40 at Los Verdes Golf Course. Taylor Shepherd recorded a 43 and Lauren Heavrin shot 44 for Mira Costa (9-2, 7-2). Shani Yokotake shot 48 to lead South (6-7, 5-4). Peninsula 197, Redondo 295: Kristin Coleman shot a 2-over-par 37 for Peninsula (15-0, 9-0) at the Palos Verdes Golf Club. Jenny Coleman shot 38 and Iyane Itamura added a 39. Michi Nitahara led Redondo (1-8 in league) with a 52. Yuli Suzuki and Jessica Castile won two of their doubles sets, including a two-point victory that clinched South Torrance’s 10-8 Pioneer League win over host North Torrance. South (9-7, 5-0) got a pair of wins from all three of its singles players, Esther Kim, Jessica Ly and Lauren Gutierrez, to put it in the driver’s seat on the road to its second straight league title. Bea Palileo swept her singles sets for North (9-5, 3-2). South’s No. 1 doubles player Maggi Chiodo missed the match with a pinched nerve in her neck. Also in the Pioneer League … El Segundo 10, Torrance 8: Hazuki Onaga swept in singles for visiting El Segundo (2-5 in league), which took seven of nine singles sets. Substitutes Hoa Tran and Sophia Manouchehry won a key doubles set for El Segundo. Torrance (1-7, 0-5) won six of nine doubles sets. In the Bay League … Peninsula 12, Redondo 6: The doubles teams of Jenna Glimp-Hana Chang and Anna Tatsuno-Lindsey Gerber each swept their three sets for Peninsula (10-5, 3-3), which took eight of nine doubles sets. Della Taylor swept in singles for Redondo (10-4, 1-4) to improve to 37-0 on the season. Mira Costa 17, West Torrance 1: Laura Derian swept in singles for Mira Costa (13-3, 4-1). The doubles team of Taylor Mahr-Kristina Cleland also swept for Mira Costa. In the Del Rey League … Bishop Montgomery 18, St. Monica 0: Danielle Butler and Melanie Scott swept their singles sets at love for host Bishop Montgomery (8-3, 7-0). The doubles team of Christine Daniels-Genevieve Bever also swept at love for the Knights. Jeff Giery scored four times as Mira Costa scored all of its goals in the first half of its 11-6 Bay League win over visiting Redondo. Matt Burton and Scott Comley each added a pair of goals. David Olson had 10 saves for Mira Costa (9-8, 4-0). Ryan Vint scored three goals and Robby Horn chipped in two for Redondo (9-9, 1-3). In a nonleague match … Cerritos 17, El Segundo 6: Danny Rajaniemi’s four goals was not enough for visiting El Segundo (10-7) to contend with Cerritos (13-6), which is ranked No. 3 in CIF Southern Section Division VI. Matt Pittluck added two goals. Matt Kubeck had 13 saves for El Segundo, which trailed, 11-2, at halftime. It was the first matchup between the two teams since Cerritos beat El Segundo in overtime of last year’s CIF Division VI final. Girls tennis Boys water polo JC men’s soccer Mario Martinez scored twice as El Camino scored the match’s first three goals in its 3-2 South Coast Conference victory over visiting Pasadena. Ryohei Amaga scored and had an assist for El Camino (6-5-5, 1-3-3). Also in the South Coast Conference … Harbor 1, East L.A. 1: Edgar Flores scored in the 27th minute for Harbor (6-5-6, 1-3-3). JC women’s soccer Cynthia Lozano scored the only goal for host El Camino in its 3-1 South Coast Conference loss to Pasadena. Lauren Humphrey had four saves for El Camino (11-5-1, 3-3).160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! From staff reports For the first time in the program’s eight-year history, all five scorers for the Torrance High girls golf team shot even-par or better in a 176-227 Pioneer League win over host North Torrance on Tuesday at Victoria Golf Course in Carson. Jane Rah shot a 2-under par 34 to pace Torrance (5-0 in league). Jenny Shin and Jennel Alexander each shot 35. Demi Frances Runas and Chaewon Park both shot 36. The team’s previous record of 184 was set on Oct. 4, 2005, in a match against Santa Monica at Los Verdes Golf Course. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.“This is the first time I’ve ever seen it happen in CIF on a par-36,” Torrance coach John Wurzer said. “It was a pretty special day.” The impressive performance came on the eve of the 18-hole, four-person team Knabe Cup at Lakewood Golf Course. Rah, Shin, Runas and Rochelle Chan will represent Torrance, which has won the tournament each of the last three seasons. Chan finished sixth for Torrance on Tuesday with a 37, a score Wurzer had to omit from the team’s overall score. “I told him if he was going to throw them out that we’d take his next three (scores),” North coach Steve Schmitz said jokingly. Erica Matsushima was the top finisher for North (10-5, 1-4) with a 40. last_img read more

Aging gays need senior living center

first_imgAs the generation of gay men and lesbians who came out in the 1960s and ’70s reaches retirement age, about a dozen specialized senior developments across the country are either up and running or in the works. In such senior-heavy locales as California, Arizona and Florida, as well as less traditionally gay-friendly places like North Carolina and Texas, builders have found a market in a segment of the gay population that worries getting old will mean going back in the closet. “In a retirement community, you want to be with people of like minds and like interests, whether it’s a golf community or a religious community,” said Bonnie McGowan, who is spearheading Birds of a Feather, a second gay senior complex in New Mexico. “Until I feel safe walking down the street holding a woman’s hand … and not feel like I’m going to offend even one person, there is a need for this.” Besides personal safety, specialists in gay aging issues offer other reasons why the so-called Stonewall Generation, named for the 1969 New York riots that marked the beginning of the modern gay liberation movement, needs and craves places of its own to retire. Among them are the years of stigma and isolation many gays who are over 50 experienced, that may have left them estranged from their families, financially insecure and childless. SAN FRANCISCO – Like other gay men in their golden years, Jack Norris and Seymour Sirota had heard the horror stories. An elderly lesbian couple is housed on separate floors of a nursing home and kept from seeing each other. A gay retired college professor feels compelled to keep his sexual orientation a secret after his roommate at an assisted living facility asks to be transferred. “I thought, `We are not going to be in that situation,”‘ the 67-year-old Norris says crisply. “This is not going to happen to us in our final days.” That’s how the two New Yorkers, partners for 14 years, landed at Rainbow Vision, a just-completed senior community in Santa Fe, N.M. From the private dining room named after Truman Capote to the cabaret where ’60s teen icon Lesley “It’s My Party” Gore is scheduled to appear this weekend, everything about the 146-unit retirement village was designed with the comfort of graying gays and lesbians in mind. “There is a real sense of disenfranchisement and also a sense of independence, of `I don’t want to be dependent on family, I want to be dependent on community,”‘ said Judy Dlugacz, founder of the San Francisco-based lesbian travel company Olivia Cruises and Resorts. Olivia is currently scouting land in the Palm Springs area for what Dlugacz hopes will be the first of several high-end resort communities geared toward mature lesbians who are looking either for a vacation home or a place to retire. Joy Silver, developer of Rainbow Vision, also plans to expand to Palm Springs, a desert community already popular with gay tourists. “Back in the day, we could identify each other because the only place to be gay was a gay bar,” said Silver, who views her Santa Fe property as somewhere for Baby Boomer gays to live the second half of their lives as residents of a majority. “Now, we have more options and we may be more out, but it’s still going to be hard to find friends or partners,” she said. “It doesn’t help to live in a gay-friendly community without any other gay people.” Along with second chances – Silver is planning to throw a prom party “for those of us who didn’t go to senior prom with the person we wanted to” – Rainbow Vision was designed to foster a sense of belonging. The fitness center was named after lesbian tennis pioneer Billie Jean King, for example, while services for those requiring ongoing medical care reflect lessons learned from the AIDS crisis. The 26 rented assisted living units comprise a section of the complex called The Castro, after the San Francisco neighborhood that has long been a center of gay culture. Steven David, a postdoctoral psychology fellow at the University of California, Los Angeles, who counsels and researches older gay men, said the concept of gay senior housing gets mixed reviews from his clients. He has spoken to some who think living in a gay environment sounds fun and others who think it sounds awful, “just like some straight people like retirement communities and some don’t.” Meanwhile, some in his field oppose the idea of separate communities for gay seniors, which also have taken off in Canada and parts of Europe, as voluntary self-segregation.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

Man City target has farewell dinner with friends ahead of move to England

first_img Jorginho looks set to swap Naples for Manchester 1 Napoli schemer Jorginho has said goodbye to his friends at the club ahead of a summer switch to Manchester City.According to Italian newspaper Il Mattino, the Brazilian had dinner at the home of Napoli’s stadium announcer Daniel Bellini alongside all his closest friends.And it has been suggested that this is the clearest indication yet that the 26-year-old is set to leave Naples.Jorginho has emerged as one of City’s primary targets during the window following an impressive season in Serie A.Pep Guardiola’s side surged to the Premier League title with a record points haul but that will not stop them from further strengthening their squad during the window.And it appears as though the £44m-rated Napoli playmaker could be one of the first stars in through the door.last_img read more

Donors aid day-care center after charity funds stolen

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! VALENCIA – More than $3,000 has been collected by a Valencia day-care center to replace the $584 stolen in a weekend burglary, the missing money earmarked for a charity that makes wishes come true for seriously ill children. “It’s amazing how people are helping,” Cecile Keakley, director of La Petite Academy, said Wednesday. “We’ve had many phone calls and checks arrive in response to people hearing about the break-in.” One of the donations came from La Petite’s chief executive officer,Gary Graves, who wrote a check for $584. The money was being collected for a donation to the Make-A-Wish Foundation. “He knows how much effort our children and parents put into this. La Petite has partnered with Make-A-Wish since 2003,” she said. “We usually host an event in the fall and the spring to raise money for them.” AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The money taken was cash collected at a recent fall festival at the center. Keakley said the center was close to its goal of a $2,000 donation, with the rest of the money in checks that the burglars did not touch. Since the story hit the media, more than $2,400 has poured into the office from various sources. “We will be sending those donations off right away,” she said. Sheriff’s technicians dusted the site for fingerprints, but have not come up with any leads. Carol Rock, (661) 257-5252 last_img read more

Weird? Nope. Austin Really Encourages More Diversity in Tech

first_imgFollow the Puck What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces Michael Manning Could a Texas city be poised to show up Silicon Valley when it comes to embracing diversity in so-called STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) fields?You bet your authentic “Keep Austin Weird” T-shirt.While the West Coast’s biggest Bay Area players continue their sluggish representation of minority voices, the capital of the Lone Star State shines brightly with innovation spurred by open opportunities for all. Unlike corporations such as Google and Amazon, which employ fewer than 3 percent African-American workers in technical positions (10 percent less than counterparts around the nation), Austin’s businesses are actively bucking the trend.The momentum toward diversification of personnel is palpable; it’s also important from a purely profitable perspective. Studies have shown that tech enterprises led by women produce 35 percent greater revenue than those steered by men and that having a powerful female leader at the helm makes a $44 million difference for innovation-based companies.In other words, being pro-Austin is good for the psyche and the pocketbook — and that’s partly why it consistently ranks among the nation’s best places to start a business. Austin’s forward-thinking environment has made it an entrepreneurial oasis for any woman or minority tired of bandaging the cuts that come from shattering glass ceiling after glass ceiling.Broader Views in Austin’s BoardroomsPerhaps it’s a little ironic that conservative-leaning middle America has emerged as the place where girls are encouraged to embrace their possibilities without allowing dusty, trite “ladies don’t have a natural penchant for math or science” mantras to get in their way. Yet the STEM scene is flourishing among Austin’s green spaces and active incubator centers.Girlstart is a terrific example of an Austin organization that’s cultivating curiosity among tomorrow’s female startup leaders. By focusing on teaching girls early that they can (and should) foster a love of challenging themselves, Girlstart is trying to make STEM-based programs cool. As one professor from the University of Oklahoma notes, the secret to highlighting STEM careers is making them relevant to students. With more women teaching STEM to girls, the inevitable consequence will be a heightened realization among all students that anyone can be a disruptor.For Austin’s female students who want an even more immersive STEM experience, there’s always the Ann Richards School for Young Women Leaders. Billed as a “public all-girls school of choice,” it’s a place where I’ve personally mentored many young women on their journeys to hopefully become my future collaborators — and maybe even competitors — in the business world. What better way to get a head start and learn how vast their possibilities are than by living STEM day after day?Of course, for women and women-identifying entrepreneurs already in the workforce, Austin’s BossBabes (#bbatx) offers much-needed support. The organization has an ever-evolving carousel of immersive events and professional development platforms to enrich the working and personal lives of women who are set on being changemakers. BossBabes has made national waves from its central Texas home, with one article indicating that Austin City Council’s mostly female leadership team indicates just how powerful focused messaging can be in transforming communities, one election at a time.In the corridors of our own company, we try to echo these sentiments and build on what organizations such as Girlstart, Ann Richards School, BossBabes, and so many others have begun. Our mentality is one of complete inclusion across the spectrum of people we work with — clients, teammates, vendors, and partners. With empathy as a core value, we support one another to reach common goals — namely, altering the future of software innovation.Tightening the Innovation Gap in the HeartlandWith so much good stuff happening in the area of STEM careers for women and minorities in and around Austin, three significant achievements have come to the forefront for businesses that make their home in this ever-evolving pocket of Texas:1.Improved Team DynamicsThe Harvard Business Review doesn’t mince words when it claims that having women within a team increases the group’s intelligence. Anyone who has ever brainstormed in a diverse atmosphere understands why having differing viewpoints makes for smarter, more interesting solutions. Without a set of divergent voices, teams can’t see issues from all perspectives, limiting their abilities to make the wisest decisions.2.Increased Overall InnovationInnovation isn’t just a buzzword; it’s a necessity in a world where women’s buying power projects astronomically higher than the rest of society. Women are a demographic that companies can’t afford to ignore. With women-generated ideas at the table, innovation can become reality.3.Greater Productivity and MultitaskingGender diversity also helps improve hard numbers because the more balanced the genders of a team, the more likely it is to turn in stronger work. Additionally, the sense of collaboration lends itself to pride, which buoys higher performance efforts and ratings.Living and working in Austin isn’t “weird.” It’s downright wonderful, especially for people who believe it’s high time for organizations to throw out anything that smacks of “the way we’ve always done things.” The more press Austin gets, the more likely its tenets will spread through the rest of the nation. As such, everyone — not just women and minorities — will ultimately benefit. Related Posts Tags:#Diversity In Tech Michael Manning, president at Rocksauce Studios, joined the team to contribute her considerable marketing, analytical, and relationship skills. As president, she leads the charge on invigorating the company’s loyalty, happiness, and customer engagement from within. Trends Driving the Loyalty Marketing Industrylast_img read more