Open Access DEI Program

Hello Startup Community,

After the Philly Startup Leaders’ Diversity Dinner in Winter 2017 and prior events, we directly heard the frustrations of the entire startup community around the lack of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) across most tech/startup companies as well as founders from diverse backgrounds not gaining the same opportunity for growth and success despite the quality of their teams, products and services.

In response to the frustrations and aware of the positive relationship between inclusion and prosperity, a collaboration led by OAx (d.b.a Open Access Philly) in partnership with representatives from Philly Startup Leaders, Guru, Mogulette, and Media Bureau, Inc. was launched to collect, analyze and share the first-ever, dedicated, DEI-focused Data and Information Set for the Philadelphia startup community.

The dedicated DEI effort will use data, collective analysis and cross-sector collaboration to identify the most impactful, actionable issues to address, and provide targeted resources to the community to enact meaningful change.


  • Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (“DEI”) Survey, plus:  
    • A series of Small Workshops that will begin in Fall 2018; and
    • A dedicated Digital Home at ( – updates coming soon): for
      • Data
      • Resources
      • Workshop Notes & (anonymized) Transcripts
      • Continuous Feedback

Who should participate?

All members of the community and ecosystem should participate in the Data Survey

  • Founders
  • Executives / Leadership Teams
  • Employees
  • Investors
  • Board Members
  • Advisors
  • Vendors


The Small Workshop Series targets Founders, Leaders, Board Members and Investors.

  • But, as with the Data Survey, all are welcome to participate
  • Ideally we would like at least one senior representative and significant stakeholder of every early stage company in the City to participate in at least one Workshop.

What’s the objective?  

The OAx mission has always been to help build and grow a community that provides for Equal Economic Opportunity for all quality organizations through:

  • Data;
  • Community transparency; and
  • Dedication to D.E.I.
  • This program will use the collective intelligence of the broader community
  • Ensure racial & ethnic minorities, women, LGBTQ community members, veterans and people with disabilities gain equal opportunities to successfully grow their businesses.
    • Ensure the above groups who are employees also gain equal opportunities to grow professionally and personally within their organizations.

What action will be taken after the data is compiled?

OAP will convene groups to analyze the Data Survey and Workshop data each quarter

  • Discover insights for short, medium and long-term actions
  • Share analysis on dedicated website

How to help?

  • We need Founders, Employees, Leaders, Board Members, Investors and Stakeholders to take the DEI Survey.
    • Share within your organization or an organization you know.
  • We are actively seeking to partner with, and gain support from, like-minded individuals and organizations.
    • We are looking for partners to help spread the word about the collaborative initiative. (I.E. Feature on your website, Hosting a workshop…)
  • We need ambassadors for each workshop.
    • Volunteer (or recommend) an ambassador for promotion of our work, sharing our survey/content and assisting during events.



Best Regards from the Organizers,

OAx – Paul Wright, Tiffanie Stanard and Jeff Friedman


Philly Startup Leaders – Kiera Smalls, Prasanna Krishnan, Bob Moore


Guru – Chris Anderson


Mogulette – Brigitte Daniel


Media Bureau, Inc. – Benjamin Barnett



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