Shireen Mitchell is an award-winning social entrepreneur, and founder/senior digital strategist at Stop Online Violence Against Women (SOVAW) — a leading research organization based in Washington, DC (and parent to the Stop Digital Voter Suppression TM project). SOVAW’s research has revealed extensive tactics used against Black identity in the United States, and how it has been especially exploited within disinformation campaigns in (and beyond) 2016. Mitchell and her team were the first to recognize Russian digital threats that directly targeted Black American voters (all too successfully suppressing the democratic voice of thousands).
Mitchell’s work has defined the term ‘digital voter suppression’ and landed it in front & center in the voter suppression space. Her research involves deep cross-collaboration with activists, data scientists, civil rights organizations, and legislators to create a safer and saner Internet culture — inclusive of women and girls of color facing gendered and race-based threats. A member of the independent Facebook Oversight Board, Mitchell also founded the organization Digital Sisters/as — long before social technology achieved its present-day pervasiveness. DigitalSisters/as is the first organization to specifically focus on women and girls of color in technology and digital media. Mitchell continues to work at the forefront of addressing the role that technology companies both big and small play in discrimination and abuse of women and girls of color. Further driving this mission, she co-founded Human First Tech — a project cultivating technologies that cater to the needs of the community (and not just the digitally networked individual). She can be reached @digitalsista on Twitter.