Season 3 Episode 10

Tennisha Martin on bridging the cyber talent gap through diversity

Headshot portrait of BlackGirlsHack founder and executive director Tennisha Martin.
Tennisha Martin

Cybersecurity organizations tend to have unrealistic hiring expectations, according to Tennisha Martin, founder and executive director of the training-focused nonprofit BlackGirlsHack. That can make it hard for would-be candidates to stand out and contribute to solving urgent cybersecurity challenges.

In the latest episode of WE’RE IN!, Tennisha unpacks the important work of The BlackGirlsHack Foundation, which provides training resources and cybersecurity education to underserved communities. That includes giving Black children avenues to complete cybersecurity certifications and snag their first jobs in the industry. 

“Part of the reason why I started BlackGirlsHack was because I was a black girl that was trying to get into cyber security and I was like, hey, I’ve got a whole bunch of degrees and years of experience and certifications, and if I’m having a hard time, I know that the people who are  fresh out of high school, for example, may be having a hard time as well,” she said.

Listen to hear more about:

  • How recently reported corporate cutbacks in DEI initiatives are impacting the work of organizations like BlackGirlsHack
  • How Tennisha came to be nicknamed “mother of hackers”
  • Why gamifying cybersecurity can be key to building the next generation of cyber talent