Entrepreneur | Speaker | Poet
Busboys and Poets Bookstore, Washington, DC
Hey, I’m Uchechi
I’m a tech entrepreneur (UX + web dev), author, speaker and poet.
I am passionate about the intersection of culture,
creativity, and technology.
I help creatives and entrepreneurs people find the intersection between their passion and the impact they want to make in the world.
I speak at tech conferences, schools, literary festivals and more.
From the beginning, my background has always been a mashup of many things. This initial history got me interested in how personal and professional nuances play a role in our creative life. I was supposed to study science in college, but one day a friend suggested I take a poetry class with him. That changed the course of everything, which was a great thing. I studied Creative Writing and Education at UC Berkeley and was mentored by the late poet June Jordan. She was a professor and professional poet and modeled what a life of passionate and financially sustainable career could look like. I went on to build a professional career as a poet and creative writing teacher.
Then, everything changed again. I was living in the Bay Area and found my way to technology.
My love of language and poetry led me to technology.
I went from digital copywriter to UX Designer to the CEO of Linking Arts, a holistic software development agency in New Orleans. I’ve also worked as a startup founder and public speaker.
I’ve always had one major problem in my career.
To deal with this, I started looking at the thread that ran through all of my jobs. They all had one thing in common: I was impacting people I worked with regardless of the job I had. I felt most connected and in line with my life purpose when I was having engaging conversations with other people. I had done that in very different ways, but I had always focused on storytelling and conversations.
Today, I run a web development agency and work as a UX designer. I also speak at literary events and entrepreneur conferences. I’ve found that when I focus more on the impact I want to make instead of obsessing about my next job, I’m able to live a more fulfilling life and see how my talents can be best used.
Everything I am doing is a work in progress. I’ve felt lost at times and wondered what I was doing. I’ve also felt alive and clear that my purpose in life is to create empowering experiences both on and offline. I get to do that on stage, online via ux design and through my writing. One of the key factors that has helped me is an understanding of my personal and professional nuances that I bring to each and every experience.
I want to bring my full (and whole) self to my work, and I want to help others do the same.
I’m blogging again and will share what I am learning along the way. Thanks for joining me on this journey.
An award nominated poet, entrepreneur, speaker and tech CEO with geographic connections from Nigeria to Mexico, San Francisco, Boston and New York, Uchechi Kalu has become a strong voice in the community of global African tech entrepreneurs and writers. Released in 2006, her first book (Flowers Blooming Against A Bruised Grey Sky) was hailed as “a masterful debut that read nothing like a first time offering.” She studied creative writing at UC Berkeley, where she was mentored by the late poet June Jordan. In 2017, she gave her first TEDx talk on the power of nuance, and continues to speak at conferences and literary events.She is currently working on her forthcoming book and managing Linking Arts, a web development and design agency in New Orleans. She lives in San Miguel de Allende, MX and New Orleans, LA. www.uchechikalu.com
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