Public Page

Follow

Jahanshah Javid


Age: 56 |

Birth City: آبادان |

Joined on October 02, 2012

Valentino

In the garden watching me go out. 

Colorful men

In the Candelaria festival in Puno, Peru.

Meow Too

Valentino interfering with my work. 

The Iranian Entrepreneur Tackling Silicon Valley's Diversity Problem

Forbes: Silicon Valley has a well-documented diversity problem. Sepideh Nasiri, who often goes by Sepi, is an entrepreneur originally from Iran. She founded Persian Women In Tech (PWIT) just over two years ago, which aims to alter tech’s dreary statistics of women founders and engineers, with a focus on those of Iranian descent.

PWIT is a non-profit headquartered in Silicon Valley, Nasiri is its CEO. PWIT’s mission is to elevate the profile of Iranian women in tech, empower them and provide resources through its network. Next month on February 10, PWIT is expanding its purview to women in tech from MENA (Middle East North Africa) countries with its first conference, Women Of MENA In Tech at Oath in Sunnyvale, California.

The ebullient Nasiri is in her mid-30s and her professional life has been steeped in tech. Perhaps it was destiny that when she immigrated to the U.S. with her family by way of Germany in the 11th grade, she landed in Cupertino, CA, not far from Apple.

Her first job upon graduation from UCI was co-founding an on- and off-line magazine highlighting successful Iranians like Pierre Omidyar, the founder of Ebay among other startups including First Look Media.
 
From 2011 to 2014 Nasiri worked at Women 2.0, one of the earliest voices— the “grandmother” as she puts it—to bring more women into tech. Nasiri also advised early-stage startups and was a consultant to companies like Deloitte, HP, Twitter, Facebook and Google on issues of diversity.
 
The impetus behind PWIT happened when an Iranian startup founder friend of Nasiri’s asked her to recommend an Iranian female engineer; she wanted to diversify her engineering team. “I didn’t know anyone,” recalls Nasiri in disbelief, “I couldn’t say a name off the top of my head.” Taken aback, as Nasiri could easily rattle off people’s names, titles and departments of other ethnic group working in the tech industry, but not her own.
 
“That’s when I realized that even though I have this incredible network—not just of women, but people in tech—I wasn’t close to my own community,” says Nasiri.
 
Astonished by her own blind spot, Nasiri began contacting friends at Google, Facebook, Apple, Cisco and Oracle to inquire if there was some type of internal Iranian group. With the exception of Apple, which had a mailing list, no company had one. “That was very strange,” reflects Nasiri, “especially when you are talking 2015.” She was especially surprised by Google, as many top level employees were Iranian-born or of Iranian descent, including Omid Kordestani, the Chief Business Officer at the time, now at Twitter.
 
This gaping void inspired Nasiri and a friend to organize a casual wine and cheese gathering for Iranian women in tech. Seven women showed up. Nasiri planned additional events and attendance numbers nearly doubled with each gathering. “Fast forward to today,” says Nasiri enthusiastically, “we have just over 500 members in the Bay Area. All women, 90% technical backgrounds.”
 
Nasiri chose "Persian" over "Iranian" when naming PWIT because she felt Persian isn’t associated with religion, policies or politics. “It has to do with the cultural background of who we are,” explains Nasiri.
 
PWIT’s monthly events address topics of entrepreneurship, startups and engineering, from hiring data scientists to business legal structures. PWIT now operates in five U.S. cities; London was added as of October 2017. Everyone working in tech is welcome at PWIT events: males and females, Iranians and non-Iranians. 

Snow storm

Shaving cream and water-filled balloons flying everywhere in the streets on "Carnaval" before the start of lent on the Catholic calendar.

Iranian intellectuals demand referendum

Al Arabiya: The statement, which was signed by 15 prominent political, cultural and social figures, slammed the “oppressive irreparable regime” in Iran.

“It has hidden behind religion for the past four decades leading to a political deadlock and destroying the opportunity towards reform,” they said, adding that the regime “obstructs the Iranian people’s freedom.”

Their call to hold a general referendum is based on people’s right to self-determination.

They also slammed the judicial authority and said officials in the judicial and legislative apparatuses were “ignorant people who lack competency. They added that laws were “unjust as they promoted discrimination and violence” which led to corruption and looting of public funds.

They also condemned harassing and detaining lawyers, journalists and activists for criticizing the regime and demanding to separate religion from politics.

“To overcome this crisis, the current Islamic regime must be peacefully abandoned. (The country) must move forward towards establishing a parliamentarian system according to democratic bases that guarantee freedom of expression, end discrimination against women and solidify the principle of equality among men and women and people of different religions and sects,” they added.

Those who signed the statement include lawyers Nasrin Sotoudeh, Shirin Ebadi, who has received a Nobel peace prize, directors Jafar Panahi and Mohsen Makhmalbaf, philosopher Mohsen Kadivar and political activists Mohsen Sazegara and Hassan Shariatmadari.

Iranian PhD student released after detainment at JFK

 

New York Post: A Fulbright Scholar from Long Island spent more than 25 hours detained at JFK Airport — and was put on a plane twice under threat of being deported back to Iran — before finally being released Sunday.

Stony Brook University linguistics student Vahideh Rasekhi was just one of scores of people across the country targeted by President Trump’s ban on immigrants from seven Muslim countries.

At JFK alone, there were 48 people detained as of Sunday, with 30 eventually freed and two deported, said lawyers at the airport. Sixteen people were still being held.

“I’m exhausted,’’ said Rasekhi, who has lived in the US for about 12 years and was returning from visiting her family in Iran, after being released.

“It’s so embarrassing.’’

A noted Syrian musician who lives in Brooklyn and recently toured with cellist Yo-Yo-Ma said he is now worried about trying to return home to the US.

Kinan Azmeh, a clarinet player who received a green card three years ago for demonstrating “extraordinary” abilities in science, business or art, said his tour is set to end in Beirut this week.

“I have my apartment [in Brooklyn]. You know, 16 years is not a short time, you accumulate lots of stuff. But what is not replaceable is all the friends who are incredibly supportive,” the 40-year-old told AP.

The Iraqi mother of an active-duty US serviceman had her own horror story: She was held at Kennedy for 30 hours over the weekend before being released.

Her son “was sleeping at the airport waiting for her to be freed,’’ said his lawyer Kayla Green, who went to the airport to represent detainees pro bono.

US Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-Brooklyn), who was at the airport meeting with federal officials and lawyers representing the detainees, said the unidentified woman has a legal visa to be here.

“The visa was signed off on by the government,” he said. There was “no reason for her to be detained.”

She was supposed to travel to the US two weeks ago — but had to postpone the trip because her husband died.

“They were both supposed to come, and then [the solider’s] father unfortunately passed,’’ Green said. “When [his mom] arrived was exactly when the order was enacted.” >>>

Sunday stroll

Befoe the parade in Puno, Peru.

Iran's female skier blazes a trail to Pyeongchang

 

Tehran, Iran (Al Jazeera) - When Samaneh Bayrami Baher marches in Pyeongchang on Friday for the opening of the 2018 Winter Games, she will be one of only four athletes representing Iran's national colours.

Getting a spot to compete in the 23rd Olympic Games in South Korea was no easy feat for the 26-year-old athlete, who is the only female member of the country's national cross-country skiing team. 

Aside from limited financial resources, Iran also doesn't have enough facilities for ski training. While the world's top skiers train year-round, Iranian athletes are limited to about three months when it snows on the mountains.

This year has seen a lack of snow in Iran, meaning Samaneh travelled to Armenia and Turkey to train.

As a child, Samaneh fell in love with swimming, competing and winning three international events. She also trained for competitive cycling.

But skiing became her passion, and she began dreaming of competing in the Olympics.

While skiing she is required to wear a hijab, a compulsory garment for women in the Islamic Republic, as well as a skirt in compliance with the country's customs.    

Cross-country skiing is one of the toughest events in the Winter Olympics.

While training at Shemshak Ski Resort north of Tehran on Sunday, Samaneh described to reporters how "overwhelming" it is to scale mountains for long distances in sub-zero temperatures.

Samaneh said she is determined to give her best and "make her country proud" >>>

I'm taller than you

In Puno, Peru. 

More