Women at work: Creating opportunity, adding voice in tech industry

Women at work: Creating opportunity, adding voice in tech industry

Katie Hench, CEO of Infiniteach, an online platform to help teach children with autism, and at right, Jamie Migdal, founder of 3 pet-care & pet-training businesses, both work at 1871 in the Merchandise Mart. | Photo by Richard A. Chapman/Sun-Times

By Sandra Guy

Two women spearheading digital startup companies at the 1871 tech hub say their new, male-dominated environment poses challenges, but ones that enliven and inform them.

Jamie Migdal, a serial entrepreneur who has grown three successful brick-and-mortar pet-care companies, in late July is launching an online career and networking site for the pet-care industry — think Match.com for pet-care businesses, employees and would-be workers.

The site, FetchFind.com, now in private beta, aims to improve professionalism in the industry by letting businesses find qualified, passionate and dedicated employees.

After working almost exclusively with other women throughout her 18-year entrepreneurial career, Migdal said she has met only a couple of other women who have founded their own companies since she moved to 1871 in January.

She has learned to be OK with seeing few other women in the shared space, and has turned it to her advantage.

“I feel accomplished, special and like I can make a huge difference because I’m bringing a voice to the tech industry,” she said, adding that she has mentored men and women for many years and values having both on her company’s board.

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