Five Female Tech All-Stars Driving Innovation at Target

From the boardroom to the engineering lab women are shaping retail's future like never before. At the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing, the world’s largest technical conference for women, more than 15,000 female technologists spent three days networking, sharing ideas, exploring a career fair and attending a lineup of speakers and presentations.
Several women from Target’s technology teams attended the conference which featured keynotes from IBM president and CEO, Ginni Rometty and U.S. government chief technology officer, Megan Smith, and other prominent speakers.

On its Bullseye View blog, Target highlighted five of its technologists that attended the conference. More comprehensive bios are available here. Below is a quick look at five of the future and current tech leaders that attended the event:
Joana Cruz, Lead Software Engineer. Cruz's fascination with tech started in grade school, around the time the first IBM PC was introduced. “I saw it in a magazine, and dreamed that someday I would work in a job related to computers. But back then, computer science wasn’t well known or understood, and I didn’t own a PC — I used labs most nights and weekends." A six-year Target team member, Joana’s led major projects in the areas of distribution, transportation, merchandising, healthcare and point-of-sale operations. She was the first female overarching engineering consultant on Target’s supply chain support services team. These days, she’s leading a team of newly hired engineers focused on modernizing supply chain forecasting.
Maria Elisa Laborte, Lead Engineer, Platform Engineering. Laborte first got interested in coding as a math student turned computer science major. “We were given certain scenarios or problems and had to formulate logic to solve them, eventually programming or coding them using Cobol, Pascal or C++. At that time, these were the programming languages. Coding is fun and there’s this feeling of fulfillment when your program starts working.” At Target she is working on capacity planning and managing data integration solutions for multiple critical systems that need near real-time integration. Her team processes a large volume of data for things like order management systems, Target's supply chain, and lots more.
Connie Yu, Lead Engineer. Yu has been at Target for over a decade and held a number of leading tech and architect roles. "Right now, I’m working on our next generation of supply chain systems, focusing on replenishment. I define system architecture, as well as work on design and coding with my team. My work on point-of-sale is close to my heart, because I still see the results every time I shop Target and use the checkout system. I designed a control module that drives the workflow on the credit card device guests use to pay. I’ll never forget how proud and excited I was the first time I swiped a credit card through the device controlled by my module.”
Katrina Schreiber, Software Engineer. Schreiber is "currently working on the application programming interface (API) developer portal, an angular-based user interface containing Target API and endpoint documentation, and self-service for API keys and access tokens. Target developers and vendors use this tool for both internal and guest-facing applications.”
Kendra Ware, Technology Leadership Program Trainee. Ware started her tech career as a Target intern and has been a full time employee for two years. She is "currently on the RAPID: cloud & automation services team, which enables other teams to provide new application releases to our guests as fast as possible. It’s my second rotation through Target’s Technology Leadership Program, which lets Target technologists rotate through different information technology roles, learning about a variety of applications, platforms and environments.”

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