She also is the founder of Techmums, an influential social enterprise that helps working-class women become tech savvy, and since last year she has served the UK government as an adviser on digital services. All of that on top of being an honorary professor of computer science at University College London and a senior research associate at the University of Cambridge.
A recent appearance on BBC radio’s Desert Island Discs puts Black in the same company as the likes of Bill Gates and Stephen Hawking.
You can see why Black, drawing on her rich experiences from such humble beginnings, called her Oracle Code speech “If I Can Do It, So Can You!”
But how? Black’s advice is encouragingly tangible and doable. Her first lesson: Take responsibility for your own success. “Don’t rely on anybody. If you want to accomplish something, you take charge and make it happen,” Black says, though she doesn’t suggest the road ahead, especially for women, will be easy. “You need perseverance…lots of old-fashioned hard work and grit.”