Social Innovation Manager –
Telstra Foundation Annie Harper isn’t someone you could easily forget. In Silicon Valley she was known as the blue-haired hacker (not to mention a feisty cage fighter).

Now based in Sydney, she’s a surfing, salsa dancing, rock-climbing tech entrepreneur. But there’s one or two times even Annie has felt invisible.

“I remember sitting in an audience last year while our co-founder Brennan was presenting on our startup Equal Reality,” Annie explained. “During the presentation Brennan pointed me out in the crowd as his co-founder while talking about my virtual reality graphic animation.” “Straight after the presentation, a man came bounding up and shook the hand of man next me – congratulating him on his work and wanting to learn more.

It hadn’t occurred to him that it was the 5’5″ blonde girl to his right who was the animator,” Annie laughed. It’s ironic that this was exactly the type of unconscious bias experiences that had inspired the 32-year-old alongside partners Brennan Hatton and Rick Martin to create Equal Reality – the world’s first interactive diversity and inclusion training using high-end virtual reality (VR) technology.

Annie met Brennan three years ago while both working in Silicon Valley. She’d taught herself to code and was at Intel’s RealSense lab building brain-computer interface prototypes. Read more from…

thumbnail courtesy of