Christine Rance Joins the Board for Girls in Tech D.C.

Meet Christine Rance, the D.C. chapter’s newest board member, who will be focused on the organization’s Mentorship program. Managing Director Baan Alsinawi, who is president and founder of integrated risk management firm TalaTek, recently caught up with Christine to talk about her interest in joining the board and helping to relaunch the local chapter. Christine also discusses why promoting women in tech in the D.C. area is so important to her. Read the full Q&A to learn more.  

What interested you in joining the D.C. Girls in Tech (GIT) board and specifically in this new role?

After attending the initial kick-off for GIT DC, my interest in the organization peaked. I envisioned the challenge and opportunity of growing this organization from the ground up and I never walk away from a challenge! I know, in collaboration, that my leadership skills will be put to good use here and so I applied to the board to lead the mentorship program.

Tell us about yourself and what you hope to accomplish with GIT. 

I’ll summarize myself in short: I am originally an Ohio girl and a graduate of Ohio University. Having lived across the U.S., working in large cities, both here and abroad, I settled in the Washington, D.C. metro area in 1998 – the same year I began working in tech. I’m raising a precarious almost 9-year-old daughter, and am engulfed in her world of activities and her social life. I enjoy various activities, playing tennis, theater, music and travel among many others. I aim to build a successful mentorship program for GIT D.C., meet new women and open doors for many.

Have you been involved in other leadership roles outside of work? If so, please share details and if not, why now? 

Yes, specifically with my daughter’s school groups: room parenting, Girl Scout Leader and tennis coach. I’m ready both personally and professionally to take my leadership skills to a broader audience, the time is now and GIT is a welcomed opportunity.

If you were able to give advice to your 20-something self, what would that be?

Good question. I often ask myself this question with the same resulting theme:  You are good enough and you have what it takes – take the chance. All too often we find ourselves running from what we really want because we are afraid of failure or are concerned with how others will perceive us. Failure is a key component of success, but no one ever tells us that, so best to remain focused and work hard, but please do not believe you cannot do it, because you absolutely can!

What do you love most about working in the tech world? What do you dislike the most?

Working in tech came to me in a somewhat haphazard way. I thought working in tech was all about computer science and coding. I was surprised and happy to find out that it was/is much more than just that. Working in the tech world does not mean a degree in computer science necessarily – law, business, marketing and product management degrees and the list goes on for roles that are just as exciting in the tech world. The opportunities are endless and the best part of it all is that we are able to define our roadmap as we weave our way through the landscape – that is what I most love about working in technology.

What do you believe is the biggest hurdle women face in pursuing a career in technology? How can your role with GIT help address these hurdles?

Getting a seat at the table. As a participant at the table, I find increasingly women represent less than 2% of attendees. We need a girls club, like the good ‘ole boys club, to support and lift each other up as the era of inequality still exists, and speaking up to be heard continues to be a concern of women as the resulting perception is not always favorable. I am hopeful that my role with GIT DC will provide girls who are interested in a career in tech with the skills they will need to identify, manage and overcome inequality, have the voice in the meeting, speak up and be provided the accolades when deserved, even one victory is a step in the right direction.