Black Tech Nation PittsburghNelson Foltz2018-09-09T16:15:54+00:00


Black Tech Nation (BTN) is the first and only social good organization dedicated to growing a black tech ecosystem within Pittsburgh’s rapidly growing tech economy. We pride ourselves on being an informative, engaging safe space for our “black unicorns” – black tech professionals, black entrepreneurs, parents of black students interest in STEM, and black tech enthusiasts – to build connections, share opportunities, and exchange resources. Through our strategy, “Gather. Connect. Affect.”, we plan to make Pittsburgh the model city for true tech inclusion.

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Black Unicorns

two gentlemen talking at btn event

We pride ourselves on being a fun and informative safe space for black professionals in the tech industry or as we like to call ourselves, “black unicorns”. This group includes black tech employees, engineers, industry leaders, developers, startup founders, VCs, etc. Are you a black unicorn looking to learn, educate, connect, share information, and hang out? Join today!

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BTN and Tech Companies

Black Tech Nation discussion

We partner with tech companies and diversity groups alike to create socially conscious work cultures that make everyone, specifically black techies, feel comfortable in typically white, male dominated work spaces. It’s a complicated issue that we’re ready to tackle. Are you interested in making your company a company for all? If so, email us to set up a meeting and discuss your ideas.



Youth and Local Policy

discussion at BTN meeting

The pipeline starts with the youth. That is why we’re on a mission to teach 1000+ black students how to code in Pittsburgh . We are also working with The Mayor’s office and PGH City Council to draft legislation that advocates for more diverse hiring and community engagement by local tech companies. Want to create change with us? To learn more, subscribe to our newsletter.



Kelauni Cook is a software developer from Chicago, IL and the founder of Black Tech Nation. She is currently the acting executive director of BTN and co-founder of a distributed technology education and consulting firm working out of Carnegie Mellon University’s Project Olympus. To learn more about her story and how BTN was started, click here. For bookings, please contact blacktechnation@gmail.com.

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“If it’s not for all, it’s not for us.” – Mayor Bill Peduto 

The latest from Black Tech Pittsburgh

Black Tech Pittsburgh is the inaugural chapter of Black Tech Nation and we couldn’t be more excited! With Pittsburgh’s rapidly growing tech industry and world-class institutions, companies, and non-profits, we believe that Pittsburgh presents the perfect ecosystem to foster true diversity in tech.

Though Black Tech Nation is only in it’s first year, we’re growing fast! Our plan for the remainder of 2018 is to welcome 100+ “black unicorns” around Pittsburgh into our organization, launch our youth program “Coding For College”, produce monthly meetups for our members, and continue with our quarterly BTN Speaker’s Series in partnership with Carnegie Mellon University. Click below to learn more details about what we’re planning in Pittsburgh over the next year! (read more)

(photo credit Buzzy Torek)


the faces of twelve notable people in Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Two years ago, Kelauni Cook was a substitute teacher in Chicago who had never been to Pittsburgh and had never written a line of code in her life.

Now, Ms. Cook, 29, of Arlington, is the driving force behind Black Tech Nation, an organization gathering and connecting black tech professionals in the area, advocating for diversity.

After relocating to Pittsburgh in the summer of 2016 to join a coding bootcamp at Academy Pittsburgh in Allentown, she took on a contract job as a software developer for the Washington Post. (read more)

Kelauni Cook speaking to large group


Software engineer Kelauni Cook moved to Pittsburgh last year with the intention of enhancing her coding skills and finding a job. But her life changed last April when she hosted Where is Black Tech in Pittsburgh?, an Inclusive Innovation Week event that gathered local Black entrepreneurs, City Council members (read more)

press article headline about Kelauni Cook

Village Free Press

Earlier this year, I spoke with Maywood native and Proviso East grad Kelauni Cook, who last year transformed herself, within a span of a few months, into a leading advocate for diversity in the nation’s tech industry.

Cook, a magna cum laude graduate of Howard University (read more)


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