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Our Mission

Girl Develop It is a nonprofit organization that provides affordable programs for adult women interested in learning web and software development in a judgment-free environment.

[ Our Vision ]

Our vision is to create a network of empowered women who feel confident in their abilities to code and build beautiful web and mobile applications. By teaching women around the world from diverse backgrounds to learn software development, we can help women improve their careers and confidence in their everyday lives.

[ Our Values ]

We are committed to making sure women of all races, education levels, income and upbringing can build confidence in their skill set to develop web and mobile applications. Our goal is to provide powerful hands-on programs to women seeking professional help in software development and create basic to advanced web and mobile applications.

Our Story

“Girl, Develop It!” began as a call to action for women, by women who were tired of the low representation of women in tech, and wanted to make a difference.

GDI was founded 2010 in NYC

GDI was founded 2010 in NYC

It started with just 1 class

It started with just 1 class

...which sold out in 24 hours

...which sold out in 24 hours

The organization was founded in New York City in 2010 by Vanessa Hurst and Sara Chipps. Today, Girl Develop It chapters are building strong, empowered communities in 21 cities, representing 55,000+ members nationwide who are changing their lives through learning to code with us.


Our Team

Girl Develop It Chapter Leaders at 2016 Annual Leadership Summit

Girl Develop It Chapter Leaders at the 2016 Annual Leadership Summit

Katie Franco

Katie Nohe Franco, Executive Director

Katie began her career as a Legislative Aide with the Maryland General Assembly. As the Legislator’s right hand aide, Katie served as first point of contact with the general public. Internally, she analyzed critical issues, researched policies and provided ongoing advice, counsel and direction to the Legislator and key policy makers. This involvement with policy and passion for service has set the tone for Katie’s career.

Katie successfully operated her own public affairs and community relations firm and worked with high profile clients like the Pinellas SunCoast Transit Agency (PSTA) and Lyft. Before that she worked for seven years with the Tampa Bay Partnership where she served as Senior Vice President for Regional Initiatives.

Katie rejoined the Best Buddies International team in 2015 as Senior Director of State Operations and was later promoted to Vice President of Mission & Leadership. She worked with this nonprofit in the past (2000-2006), and was recruited back during a pivotal time. During her tenure she lead the new market expansion efforts and established programs in all 50 states, as well as established operations in seven new states. In addition, Kate grew the programmatic reach by 900% in school-based programs and doubled the employment program impact. In addition to the external success, Katie lead internal organizational change by creating and establishing an internal Leadership program, created new metric reporting systems and created the pathway for sustainable program growth.

Katie is a graduate of the Universities of South Florida and Vermont, and holds a Masters in Public Administration. She has completed a variety of rigorous leadership training activities, including a fellowship with the Public Interest Research Group and most memorable is her stint abroad in Harare, Zimbabwe dealing with life and culture in a radically different cultural context.

Bindu Jallabah

Bindu Jallabah, Director of Operations

Bindu is fervently passionate about developing ecosystems that empower disadvantaged communities in making informed, self-determined decisions. She has dedicated most of her career to advocating and developing pragmatic solutions that promote social equity.

Bindu is a seasoned administrator with nearly two decades of progressive experience in nonprofit leadership and operations management. Prior to joining GDI, Bindu won awards for her work developing and executing the operational strategy for the Elwyn Baring Street Center.

Bindu is also founder and Board Chair of Karanso Africa, a civil society organization that has innovated literacy to promote self-efficacy and self-determination for women across Sub-Saharan Africa. Leveraging a strong background in Information Technology, Bindu is also the architect of Karanso’s Docteur Mobile initiative which is a tool for self-care and advocacy to improve access to maternal and reproductive health services for vulnerable women in remote villages in West Africa.


Our Board

Brenda Jin

Brenda Jin is an entrepreneur and software engineer. She’s the founder of Guanyin Labs, a company that’s helping employees reach their full potential. Before that, she taught herself to code in 2013 (with the help of GDI!) and became a Senior UI Developer at, then a Staff Engineer at Slack.

Janelle Jolley

Janelle Jolley has a background in journalism and public policy, but eventually found her way to tech after moving to Atlanta and not knowing where to shop. It was there that she founded a marketplace startup, Sidewalk District, as a result of her passion for local independent retailers and their ability to spur economic development in communities across America.

After her tour of duty as a founder, Janelle moved to California and began working at Google. Her background as a founder made her the perfect fit for being a Product Operations Manager leading international and vertical expansion with Google Local Services, a new startup within Google focused on local SMBs.

Erynn Petersen

Erynn Petersen, who is a returning board member, was formerly the Executive Director of the Outercurve Foundation. Petersen is a longtime product and engineering executive, having spent time in her career leading teams at Time, Inc., Microsoft, and Amazon. Petersen said: “There’s an urgent need for the creators of technology to reflect the people who are consuming that technology. I am deeply committed to increasing the ranks of women and non-binary adults in technical careers.”

Kaya Thomas

Kaya Thomas is the founder of We Read Too and a full-time iOS developer. Formerly she co-founded the Zonta Science Camp with the Zonta International Club of New Rochelle where she designed curriculum, facilitated lessons & projects, organized volunteers and mentored camp attendees for over four years. Thomas has been an active volunteer at Black Girls Code for over five years and last year became an active volunteer career mentor with Hack the Hood.

Arelia Jones

Arelia is an associate program manager on GitHub’s Education team where she focuses on college student programs. She is also co-founder and director of education and technology at CoderSpace, chapter leader of Girl Develop It Chicago, and co-organizer of Prompt Conf. She has a lifelong passion for the web and enjoys learning and helping others learn more about technology.


Frequently Asked Questions

Want to learn more about our classes? Interested in contacting your local chapter?
To learn more about GDI and to get answers to your questions, check out our FAQ!


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