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When a Moment Sparks a Movement — Sept 23, 2020

Human and climate health are deemed the great equalizers, but Ita Ekpoudom and Davida Herzl highlight the racial disparities in both.

After the devastating murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and so many others, Ita Ekpoudom, #WhartonWoman and Partner at GingerBread Capital, wrote a deeply personal and moving essay about what happens when systematic racial inequalities in justice and healthcare collide. On Wednesday, September 23, join us for a conversation on how she channels this frustration into her work at GingerBread, a firm that invests exclusively in unstoppable female founders. 

One of these founders is Davida Herzl, CEO of Aclima, a company that maps global air quality by measuring and analyzing air pollution and greenhouse gases, block by block. Human health and climate health are undeniably intertwined, and right now 92% of the population breathes unhealthy air. In this conversation, we will dig into the economic and health inequities caused by air pollution in communities of color—inequities that make the coronavirus so much deadlier, especially for Black, Latinx and Indigenous people, as health statisticsclearly show. Public health is an essential foundation of a functioning economy and balanced existence, but pollution exposure and access to healthcare are not uniform—who you are and where you live matters.

We recommend reading Ita’s essay and taking 10 minutes to watch Davida’s address from Collision earlier this year.

Date: Wed, September 23. 2020
Time: 12-1PM PST
Location: Online
Cost: Free

About Ita Ekpoudom

Ita is a Partner at venture capital firm GingerBread Capital, which backs high growth female founded companies. Her mission is to engage, educate, and elevate the next generation of successful women business leaders and investors. In 2014, Ita founded Tigress Ventures, an advisory and consulting firm that tapped her considerable network to bring together visionary entrepreneurs with seasoned professionals to help women scale their businesses and hone their leadership skills. 

Ita also served as Venture Partner at Plum Alley Investments, where she oversaw investment opportunities and pipeline for high-growth female-founded and gender-diverse startups. Previously, Ita held product management roles at TravelClick and American Express. She began her career at Goldman Sachs as an analyst in Credit Capital Markets and an institutional trader of preferred stock.

Ita holds an MBA in Marketing and Entrepreneurial Management from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania; and earned a Bachelor’s degree, cum laude, in Psychology, with a certificate in Finance, from Princeton University.

About Davida Herzl

Davida Herzl is co-founder and CEO of Aclima. Herzl leads a diverse team meeting the urgent need for a new class of tools to accelerate bold climate action. Aclima’s platform translates its block-by-block scientific measurements of air pollution and greenhouse gases into climate intelligence that helps governments, communities, and industry reduce emissions and protect public health. Herzl holds a Juris Doctorate, as well as a BA in Economics, Political Science, and Communications. She was named one of the Top 100 Most Creative People in Business by Fast Company (2019), one of the 100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs of 2018 by Goldman Sachs, and a Grist 50 Fixer (2017).

About WAFFA

The Wharton Alumnae Founders & Funders Association (WAFFA) is a 501c3 non-profit organization. Our mission is to accelerate the success of Penn Wharton female founders and investors. Today, 13% of Penn founders are women but they raise just 6% of venture capital. WAFFA harnesses the power of the Penn Wharton network to educate, support, and foster connections for female founders and funders.