Girls Who Code’s Dr. Tarika Barrett: ‘Be brave and keep going’

Barrett, who has spent her career empowering young people will start the agency's top job in April

Our Black Women Amplified series highlights the accomplishments of ten Black women who are creating their own history with their unique contributions to the world whether it be through media, arts, science, or politics. We salute their accomplishments and are inspired by their example. Below is more on our eighth honoree, Dr. Tarika Barrett.

Dr. Tarika Barrett is the incoming CEO and current chief operating officer at Girls Who Code, the nonprofit aiming to close the gender gap in tech.

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In her role, Dr. Barrett oversees the organization’s free Summer Immersion Program and after-school clubs program, which have reached 300,000 girls around the world, as well as the international programming, alumni programming, and people & culture teams. She officially becomes CEO on April 2.

“As CEO of Girls Who Code, I will focus on expanding our clubs as well as workforce development and mentorship programs so that our alumni always know they have support on their journey from school into the workforce, she shared with theGrio.

Dr. Tarika Barrett
Dr. Tarika Barrett (Provided)

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“Tarika and I have worked together for five years. I’ve known since the moment I met Dr. Barrett that she would be the best person to lead this organization into its next chapter,” said outgoing CEO Reshma Saujani in the online announcement that she would be stepping down.

Dr. Barrett also serves on the board of McGraw Hill, a leader in educational content, and the board of Eskolta, a nonprofit dedicated to helping urban public schools re-engage at-risk teenagers. She has also worked as the chief program officer at iMentor, where she led the organization in creating programs supporting students from low-income communities as they work to graduate high school and move on to college.

Dr. Barrett has also worked in the Office of Postsecondary Readiness at the New York City Department of Education, as deputy network leader of the Brooklyn-Staten Island Network of New Visions for Public Schools, designed and implemented research program evaluations for New York University’s Center for Research on Teaching and Learning for high school students, and served as a political organizer.

Image via Twitter @DrTarikaBarrett

She earned her Bachelor of Arts in political science from Brooklyn College, a Master of Arts in deaf education from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. in teaching and learning from New York University.

“My advice to other women blazing their own trail is to be brave and to keep going,” Dr. Barrett shared with theGrio. “Achieving your goals takes tremendous grit and fortitude, and I am confident that you have it.”

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