Author: Rodney Sampson

About Rodney Sampson

Rodney Sampson is a veteran technology entrepreneur (w/ 4 startups and 2 exits), angel investor and author of four books, including Kingonomics: Twelve Innovative Currencies For Transforming Your Business & Life, Inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Sampson is also an advisor to high growth startups such as Digit, Sandbox, Ourotech and Southern Culture Foods; growth stage companies such as Mark Burnett Productions (Sharktank, The Voice, The Bible Series, Son of God, A.D.), venture funds such as Kay Koplovitz’s Springboard Fund and Heads of State in Namibia, Gabon and Uganda. Today, Sampson is Head of Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives at TechSquare Labs, a 25,000 sq ft incubator, coworking and corporate innovation space anchored by a $25 million venture fund founded by Dr. Paul Judge and Allen Nance. Sampson is passionate about reducing our nation’s poverty and wealth gap by advancing the cause of innovation, coding, entrepreneurship and investment as a way of life for all, with an emphasis on under-represented communities. To advance this definitive cause, Sampson launched the Opportunity Ecosystem (OE). Opportunity Ecosystem includes Opportunity Hub (OHUB), the nation’s definitive platform for building diverse and inclusive innovation, entrepreneurship and investment ecosystems. OHUB merged with TechSquare Labs (Founded by Paul Judge & Allen Nance) in October 2015. Opportunity Hub merged with TechSquare Labs in October 2015 to build out a 25,000 SqFt space near Georgia Tech and collectively create the largest diverse and inclusive innovation ecosystem on the planet. OE also includes Opportunity Ventures, a new seed fund focused on making investments in startups and early stage companies with minority cofounders that are focused on disrupting industries and building scalable companies. Sampson also created Kingonomics, the nation’s leading advocacy and learning platform for minorities and under-served communities to learn, navigate and master the capital markets and investment ecosystem. Kingonomics is based on Sampson’s perception of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s economic ideals. Each year, Kingonomics’ conferences and events attract over 2,000 aspiring and existing entrepreneurs, 500 teenagers and 100 accredited investors, experts and mentors. Sampson also serves on the non-profit boards of Neyo’s Compound Foundation, the Crowdfunding Professional Association (CfPA) and the International Bishop’s Conference of The Old Holy Catholic Church of America. Sampson, his wife & children are native Atlantans.

Google for Entrepreneurs launches in Atlanta, partners with TechSquare Labs

TSL Mayor Reed GFE
(l. to. r. Brock Kolls, Chief Open Innovation Officer, TechSquare Labs; Rodney Sampson, Partner, Diversity & Inclusion, TechSquare Labs; Paul Judge, Cofounder, TechSquare Labs; Mayor Kasim Reed, City of Atlanta; Bridget Beam, Head, Global Partnerships & Google Campuses, Google for Entrepreneurs; Allen Nance, Cofounder, TechSquare Labs; Cassius Butts, Regional Administrator, Small Business Administration)

Google for Entrepreneurs, a global initiative aimed at company building, is coming to Atlanta in partnership with TechSquare Labs.

Founded by Paul Judge and Allen Nance, TechSquare Labs works with corporate clients who may have a spin-off idea, but need help to validate it and build a startup team around it. The $7 million center, which has a strong diversity focus, specializes in financial technology, logistics, information security and health tech.

Google Capital is an investor in Pindrop Security, a cybersecurity startup backed by Judge, who is also the company’s chairman. Google Ventures, meanwhile, is an investor in Ionic Security, another Judge-backed Atlanta tech company.

Sampson is a Partner and Head of Diversity & Inclusion Initiatives, TechSquare Labs.

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@RodneySampson’s #CodeStart Featured on @NPR

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Coding While Black: Hacking The Future Of The Tech Industry

At Tech Square Labs in midtown Atlanta, you’ll find glass walls and high ceilings. It follows the typical design trends of today’s “hip” innovation centers and co-working office spaces. It’s also where 14 low-income African-American students are learning Java as part of the Code Start program.

Code Start is a free, year-long training program for low-income people between the ages of 18 and 24. Participants must have a high school diploma or GED, but not a college degree. Rodney Sampson started the program. He calls Code Start, “an experiment on whether or not we can take ‘disconnected youth,’ who’ve been labeled by the system, and teach them how to be a junior level software engineer or developer.”

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@RodneySampson @PaulJudge (@TechSquare) and @MichaelTSterling (@ATLWorkforce) Launch, #CodeStart, Nation’s First Coding & Entrepreneurship Residence Based Workforce Program

TSL AWDA Learn To Code

 

The Atlanta Workforce Development Agency and TechSquare Labs to launch a 12-month innovative coding and cofounders school, where the curriculum’s focus is coding, career readiness and entrepreneurship.

The pilot program, which is the first of its kind, is designed for underserved youth in Atlanta between the ages of 18 to 24 to learn to code, get a job in the tech industry or to start a high growth company.

Read the official release.

@RodneySampson @PaulJudge @AllenNance Team Up @TechSquare Labs

Sampson at TSL
@RodneySampson joins @TechSquare Labs as Chief, Diversity + Inclusion Initiatives.

TechSquare Labs is an incubator, seed fund and 25k sf of coworking and corporate innovation space. We are driven to Build Something From Nothing with companies ranging from two guys and a laptop to established enterprises looking to stay ahead of the pack. We do this by combining experience in patents, research, and team building with a network that spans from freshman coders to Fortune 500 CEO’s.

TechSquare Labs is in Atlanta for its incredible density of educational institutions, enterprises, and entertainment. Over 250,000 students call Atlanta home along with 27 Fortune 1000 companies that generate nearly a half a trillion dollars in revenue. The city drew in $6 billion from film production budgets in the last fiscal year alone. We have hung our hat in the middle of it all in Technology Square. In addition to a cluster of corporate innovation labs and startups, the area is swarming with tech talent from Georgia Tech – where more engineers graduate than MIT and Stanford combined.

Dr. Paul Judge and Allen Nance, two technology entrepreneurs with a track record of starting, building, advising and investing in successful technology companies, founded TechSquare Labs. Rodney Sampson joined TechSquare as Chief, Diversity + Inclusion Initiatives, with its merger with Opportunity Hub.

2015 Commerce MBDA Award

MBDA recognizes the role that minority entrepreneurs play in building the nation’s economy by honoring businesses that are making a significant contribution through the creation of jobs, products and services, in addition to supporting their local communities.

THE MBDA NATIONAL MED WEEK AWARDS PROGRAM is designed to celebrate and recognize the outstanding achievements of minority entrepreneurs, as well as individuals and organizations that have demonstrated leadership and commitment in advancing global minority business enterprise.  VIEW OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE