Kevin L. Nichols

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Changing the conversation from diversity (the noun) to inclusion (as a verb) in tech!

Building an All-In Bay Area event

Building an All-In Bay Area event

By: Kevin L. Nichols – The Social Engineer


[April 22, 2015] OAKLAND.  Thanks to the Rev. Jesse Jackson, there has recently been a lot of talk about technology and its lack of diversity.  Some of the Silicon Valley tech giants have pledged to do something about the disparities of underrepresented minorities, women, LGBT, persons with disabilities, veterans, etc., however, it seems that there has been a lot more “talk” going on but little action.


Vator Splash is taking place today and tomorrow in Oakland.  Vator, Inc.’s mission is “to help great entrepreneurs find funding, and for investors to get in on the ground floor of tomorrow’s leading companies.  There a lot of workshops and seminars designed to marry entrepreneurs with investors, which in theory, will provide opportunities for underrepresented groups to have access to the tech world, but does not affect the tech giants or more mature startups disparities in the valley.  Similarly, the PushTech 2020 Summit will take place on May 6th.  This event will feature more panels regarding funding opportunities, a pitch competition, and supplier diversity opportunities for small businesses.  Nevertheless, at first blush, these events are not targeted at having a significant impact on moving the needle from diversity being the noun, versus inclusion being the verb in changing the face of Silicon Valley to reflect at least the population of the Bay Area, the State of California, or the nation.


Not everyone has the determination, motivation, creativity, and other qualities needed to be a successful entrepreneur.  Moreover, there is this misnomer that everyone who works at a startup in Silicon Valley is right out of college, with a computer science or engineering degree, or a coder.  There are numerous other jobs in tech that are not just hardcore science related jobs, such as sales, HR, recruiting, accounting, legal, real estate, etc. and increasing diversity in these areas makes tech more inclusive.


The way that I see it, there are three areas of focus in order to make the tech world more inclusive:


  1. Pipeline – Tech companies need to fund nonprofit organizations designed to encourage youth to pursue careers involving math, science, and engineering (AKA STEM).  There are many notable organizations such as my friends, Kimberly Bryant’s Black Girls Code, Kalimah Priforce’s Qeyno Labs, and Wayne Sutton’s BUILDUP that are making a tremendous impact inspiring youth to pursue technology.  Moreover, my friend, Professor Bryan Brown and I have partnered to expose 11-12 year olds to math and science at Stanford University’s Science in the City camp and I am planning a STEM related camping conference this fall for a 150 high school students.  Investing in the future creates the necessary pipeline to have underrepresented groups at the table when it is time to hire eligible talent.
  2. Seeking and Retaining Eligible Talent –  It is not enough to recruit at a few Black colleges, all women colleges, etc., tech companies need to also seek these individuals out at the mainstream institutions that they recruit at.  Furthermore, they need to have a retention policy/plan in place to make these underrepresented groups (which some make up 1% of the workforce based on the study referenced earlier in some cases) feel welcome and included.  At least Affirmative Action gave employers incentives to consider diverse talent before hiring them.  Tech now needs its own version of the Rooney Rule , which requires National Football League teams to interview minority candidates for head coaching and senior football operation jobs.
  3. Retraining Those Suffering From Age Discrimination – Surprisingly, if you are 38 or older, you are “over the hill” in Silicon Valley.  There is a huge disparity of age in tech, where older job seekers feel that they are overlooked for opportunities.  Although the younger generation has moved away from Facebook and Twitter to Snapchat and Vine, older (in this case 38+) are capable of learning coding, software languages, IT, etc., in addition to the traditional skills like accounting, finance, HR, management, legal, etc. The tech industry needs to soften it’s emphasis on the “hip culture” of t-shirts and khakis at work, playing volleyball at lunch, and the like and diversify its workforce with people that can still get the job done (and have a little fun too!).  This is in-line with President Obama’s New TechHire Initiative to provide pathways for the middle class  to get jobs.


Making the tech industry more inclusive has more benefits than meets the eye.  Today, I was fortunate enough to attend an event called “Building An All-In Bay Area” organized by the San Francisco Foundation and sponsored by PolicyLink and USC’s Program for Environmental & Regional Equity.  It basically was a satelite overview of data complied from extensive research on equity, or lack thereof, throughout the Bay Area.  For example, although the racial/ethnic composition is projected to increase until 2040, the Black population is projected to decrease.  Wages grew significantly for middle and high wage workers aged 25-64 from 1979-2012 in the Bay Area, but decreased for lower waged workers.  Lastly, people of color have lower wages and higher unemployment rates. It might be naive, but more inclusivity in the tech industry will allow people of color to earn higher paying jobs, the ability to live in the communities where they work, have their tax paying dollars be applied to the schools that their children will attend, and improve the Bay Area’s overall quality of life.


For more information about the study on Equity, please visit

Kevin L. Nichols is an entrepreneur, a legal technology, diversity, social media, and political consultant who resides in the Bay Area.  He is a passionate community organizer and activist.  Kevin is affectionately known as The Social Politician and The Social Engineer™ who is engineering a better life for the next generation, socially.  For more information, please visit


Black Men and Women Leaders in the Bay Area

Black Men and Women Leaders in the Bay Area


Dinner with President Obama in San Francisco on February 13, 2015

02-15-2015 Obama Page 1

[February 2, 2015] SAN FRANCISCO – Please join the California Democratic Party and President Barack Obama for a Pre-Valentine’s Day Dinner in San Francisco on February 13, 2015.  The address and other details will be disseminated upon your RSVP.

Please visit my custom link at to RSVP.  Please contact Erik Stowe with any questions at or (202) 488-5096. Many thanks!


02-15-2015 Obama Page 2

The Social Politician ™ is running for Delegate for Assembly District 15 on January 10, 2015

The Social Politician

The Social Politician

OK, it’s time to gear up for my first “election” (but it’s not really an election)!  For clarity, I am not running for an office, but I am running to represent the 15th Assembly District as a delegate to the California Democratic State Convention.  A delegate attends the annual convention, networks with other Democrats, represents the district, elects party officers,  promotes the California Democratic Party agenda, endorses candidates for statewide, legislative and congressional office, and votes to endorse resolutions and ballot measures.  For more information, please visit

I have an extensive background as a litigation, diversity, and social media marketing consultant who resides in Assembly District 15.  I have worked in multifaceted capacities in some of the most prolific international law firms in the country, such as Morrison & Foerster, Paul Hastings, Heller Ehrman, and Holland & Knight.  My social networking prowess and capabilities have been featured on LinkedIn’s Hall of FameYahoo’s Blog, in the Examiner,CNN MoneyMarketWatch and the Wall Street Journal.  I have worked to help elect Democrats on local, state, and federal elections as a campaign manager, field organizer, fundraiser, and social media strategist.  I am curently the Executive Director of the African American Wellness Project in Oakland.  Last year, I attended the California Democratic Convention and am prepared to take on more responsibility as an elected delegate.  My passion and desire to improve our community will be reflected in my representation of your voice for our State.


I need registered voters who live in California Assembly District 15 to show your support by voting for me and Assembly Member Tony Thurmond‘s Slate on Saturday, January 10, 2015, from 2pm-4pm (you must be in line to register to vote by 4 pm) at the Albany Community Center, 1249 Marin Ave., Albany, CA 94706.  There is a $5 charge to cover election costs, but no one will be turned away.  Here is Tony’s Slate:

Wendy Bloom – Berkeley
Karen Weinstein – Berkeley
Jess Dervin-Ackerman – Oakland
Rita Xavier – San Pablo
Jovanka Beckles – Richmond
Raquel Donoso – Richmond
Kathy Chao-Rothberg – San Pablo

Alejandro Soto-Vigil – Berkeley
Brett Badelle – Oakland
Ty Alper – Berkeley
Greg Lyman – El Cerrito
Kevin L. Nichols – El Cerrito
Alex Knox – Richmond
Charlie Davidson – Hercules

California's Future Endorsed by Tony Thurmond!

California’s Future Endorsed by Tony Thurmond!

If you live within the district, which includes all or part of Hercules, Pinole, Richmond, El Cerrito, Albany, Kensington, Berkeley, Emeryville, and Oakland (please check to confirm), then you can vote.  If not, you can volunteer and help get other registered Democrats to the polls that do live in the district there that day!  For more information, please visit and to join my team and vote on January 10th, please visit

Thank you in advance for your time and continued support!

KLN Handwritten Singature

– Kevin L. Nichols – The Social Politician ™

Don’t forget to vote on November 4th!

You Don't Understand the Problem

[October 30, 2014]  OAKLAND.  This mid-term election is critical for our country’s future.  Rather than complaining and whining about the state of our communities, our schools, our taxes, the environment, etc., here is our opportunity to show up and make a difference.  Electing our representatives and leaders is our civic duty and we should be proud to exercise it.  The deadline has passed to mail in absentee ballots, however, it is not too late to vote in person.  November 4, 2014 is the mid-term election day in California, so if you do not know where your polling place is, please visit to input your home address to find out.

Since I am The Social Politician ™, I work tirelessly for my clients to effectively disseminate their message and reach as many potential voters as possible.  Unfortunately, I do not have any clients running in this particular election, so for the most part, I have been sitting on the sidelines until I am retained.  Nevertheless, I have many friends and colleagues running in this election, so like I have done in the past, please see their campaign websites, make donations/contributions to their campaigns if you feel compelled, and give the best candidate your vote!

State Assembly District 15

Tony Thurmond –

Kevin and Tony

U.S. Representative 15th District

Eric Swalwell –

Eric Swalwell

U.S. Representative 17th District

Mike Honda –

Mike Honda

El Cerrito City Council

Gabriel Quinto –

Gabriel Quinto

City of Richmond

Uche Justin Uwahemu –


Oakland City Council, District 2

Kevin Blackburn –


Oakland City Council, District 2

Dana King –

Dana King

Oakland City Council, District 2

Abel Guillen –

Abel Guillen

Oakland City Council, District 6

James Moore –


Oakland City Council, District 6

Desley Brooks –


Oakland City Council, District 6

Michael Johnson –

Michael Johnson 037 (2)

Oakland Mayor

Bryan Parker –

Bryan Parker

Oakland Mayor

Libby Schaaf –

libby schaaf

Oakland Mayor

Courtney Ruby –

Courtney Ruby

Oakland Mayor

Dan Siegel –

Dan Siegel

Oakland Mayor

Joe Tuman –

Joe Tuman

Oakland Mayor

Jean Quan –

Jean Quan

Give Life Save Life Radio Interview with Kevin L. Nichols

Kevin L. Nichols, the Executive Director of the African American Wellness Project, and Poet, Bri Blue, were interviewed by Keith Crawford on Give Life Save Life Radio on KPOO 89.5 FM on 9/11/14.




The Social Politician’s Latest One-Sheet

Here’s our latest and most current service offering.  If you are a candidate running for office, supporting a proposition or initiative, or a company who has a product/service to launch or would like to increase your marketing presence, please call (415) 690-7109 for a free consultation.


Join The Social Politician ™ and Cory Booker on 4/23/14



Please join Co-Chairs

Jill Habig & Addisu Demissie | Joe Laymon | Keesa Ocampo | Jerome Pandell

and Co-Host

Angelina Cardona | Will Freiberg | Hala Hijazi | Supervisor Jane Kim | Mike Kim | Craig Newmark | Kevin L. Nichols | Candice Petty | Vignesh Ram | Robby Sumner | Victoria Weatherford & Jordan Gardner | John Zimmer
host committee in formation

and Senator Cory Booker

for Happy Hour in support of his 2014 re-election effort

Friday, April 25, 2014
5:30 PM
Infusion Lounge
124 Ellis Street San Francisco, CA 94102

Chairs (write/raise): $1,000 (include pre-reception with Senator Booker at 5:00 PM)

Hosts (write/raise): $500 (include pre-reception with Senator Booker at 5:00 PM)

General Admission: $150 | Young Professional: $50 (limited availability for Young Professional tickets)

To RSVP please visit or e-mail Anne at

Cory Booker and Kevin L. Nichols

Cory Booker and Kevin L. Nichols

Atlanta Fundraiser for Congresswoman Barbara Lee is Postponed Until the Fall

2014-05-02.Barbara Lee_Atlanta Invitation-page-1

If you are interested in joining the host committee, please email  Many thanks!

The Social Politician™ attends the California Democratic State Convention


[March 20, 2014] SAN FRANCISCO.  Last weekend, I accompanied a group of volunteers that descended upon Los Angeles to encourage party unity for the office of Secretary of State.  Leland Yee, a current democratic state senator representing District 8, wanted to follow the recommendation of California Democratic Party Chair, John Burton, to not endorse a particular candidate at the state convention.  Since the new law allows the top two vote getters to be on the November ballot, theoretically, there could be two democrats on the ballot as opposed to the one candidate who would receive the party’s endorsement.  Despite Burton’s plea, there was a lot of resistance.  Nevertheless, Senator Yee was victorious in achieving a no endorsement outcome at the State Convention.

Although this was a wonderful learning experience of the real life democratic process, the trip was not all work.  In addition to attending various caucuses on issues that concern all Californians, there were numerous hospitality suites, happy hours, and party’s to celebrate various elected officials and candidates running for office.  For example, I attended a reception for Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles.


I also attended a party for former San Francisco Mayor and current Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsome at the Westin Bonaventure.


All in all, it was an eye opening experience and I look forward to possibly being a delegate in the future.


By:  Kevin L. Nichols, The Social Politician™

Official Launch Party for

Frank Mallicoat of KPIX interviews Kevin L. Nichols regarding his website launch

Frank Mallicoat of KPIX interviews Kevin L. Nichols regarding his website launch

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif.   11/15/13
Today, I was interviewed by Frank Mallicoat on KPIX CBS 5’s Bay Sunday television program regarding the launch of my new website and political consultancy,  You, too, are cordially invited to participate in this momentous occasion.

Please join me on Wednesday, November 27, 2013, from 6pm to 9 p.m at  Liege Spirits Lounge, 481 9th St, Oakland, CA 94607.  The suggested donation amount is $10 to support my new venture, however, no one will be turned away that would like to attend and support.  To RSVP, please visit

Lastly, please check out the interview regarding my launch on Sunday, November 17, 2013 at 5:30am on Bay Sunday, KPIX CBS5.  Many thanks for your love and generous support in advance.



Kevin L. Nichols
The Social Politician