It was the first of its kind, dedicated to providing our amazing community of individual ambassadors with supportive sessions based on core values and themes, such as Advocacy, Confidence Building and a Call to Action.
In her opening remarks, Gemma Johnson-Brown, Ambassador Programme Director, pointed out the reach, diversity and strategic importance of the ambassador ecosystem, linking individuals with organisations and education:
What started with the launch of the Individual Ambassadors Programme in 2016, – a few dedicated people who came together wanting to help Women in Games in its mission – has grown to over 400 individual ambassadors and is now active in 52 countries aligned with our goals to create a diverse, fair, innovative and flourishing games industry.
Beginning with a session from brand new ambassadors Cory Lamontagne, software engineering manager at EA, and Rosey Asquith, talent acquisition specialist at Firesprite, who were talking about their desire to make a difference as ambassadors with Natalie Dodd, experienced ambassador and Discord moderator for the Women in Games Discord Server; the day went on to provide networking opportunities interspersed with Learning Labs, such as the ‘open mic’ session hosted by ambassador, academic and writer Charly Harbord.
Charly’s guest speakers were all first-time presenters, who took the floor to practice their presentation skills in the supportive environment of the event. Their diverse content was often very moving, as when creative storyteller Pauline Marlière presented the hurdles she had successfully defeated in order to continue her career in games, and it was always very informative such as practice sessions from Bex Betton (arts and business intern, based in the UK), Kalliopi Tsavari (programmer based in France) and Sofia Parra (material supply manager from Costa Rica).
Dan Sun (Senior People Program Manager at Riot Games in Hong Kong) and Kah Hui Teo (Global Localisation Manager at Keywords Studios) were joined by Renata Rapyo (designer and game jam organiser) to discuss their online Women in Games events, and Liz Prince, the business head of Amiqus, presented Christina Harper, Assistant Producer at Skyhook Games, Leanne Loome, who heads up Riot Forge in LA, and Sylvia Ulloque, UI artist at Ubisoft, sharing ideas about how to set up and run events, all of which provided invaluable insights into ways to connect and support each other.
The solidarity that everyone experienced from sessions was exceptional, as was the global reach of both the participants and the audience.
One striking opportunity to have come from providing online events this year, is just how connected our community is, and how mutually supportive it feels. In between sessions on Confidence Building by Jennifer Schneider, (The Loved Object) Emma Cowling (leadership coach) and Lizzie Wilding, (VP of commercial operations, Dovetail Games) ambassadors were able to use the networking possibilities of our platform to meet, share ideas and make new connections.
The day was also enriched by bringing Corporate and Educational Ambassadors together into discussions of their specialist fields in the first ever roundtable discussions, aimed at informing Women in Games strategies moving forward.
So while this was a day of firsts, we are aiming for it to be the first of many more! If you would like to become a Women in Games Individual Ambassador, or recommend that your business, studio, college or university becomes a Corporate or Education Ambassador, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our Ambassador programme brings women together from across the globe, enabling them to collaborate and work together, supporting each other to bring about change. Join us!