Justin Christian, founder and CEO of BCforward, will receive TechPoint’s Trailblazer Award during the 22nd annual Mira Awards gala. Christian co-founded IT consulting firm BCforward in 1998. The company is now the state’s largest Black-owned company and one of the top 100 largest Black-owned companies in the country.
Christian and wife Darrianne founded the Justin and Darrianne P. Christian Center for Diversity and Inclusion at DePauw University, their alma mater, in 2017. Christian pledged to donate $100,000 to Central Indiana Community Foundation to support the nonprofits work in dismantling systemic racism after the death of George Floyd. He was selected as a 2020 recipient of the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Carlotta Berry, professor of electrical and computer engineering at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, will receive the TechPoint Foundation for Youth Bridge Builder Award. Berry is a renowned engineering and robotics expert — both nationally and internationally — and STEM advocate. Berry helped form two nonprofits, Black in Engineering and Black in Robotics, in 2020. She is the co-founder and co-director of the Rose Building Undergraduate Diversity program and helped create the first multidisciplinary minor in robotics.
TechPoint is a nonprofit focused on growing technology in Indiana. The Mira Awards celebrates the best in tech in Indiana. The live broadcast will be at 8 p.m. April 22 at https://techpoint.org/riseup.
TechPoint and GANGANG have partnered to provide entertainment for the Mira Awards gala. GANGGANG, a cultural development firm, produces, promotes and preserves culture in cities.
Participating artists are:
- Native Sun, one of Indy’s premiere Hip-Hop groups. The band will close out the night with a performance with Manon Voice.
- Manon Voice is as a poet, hip-hop emcee, speaker, educator, and an advocate for Social Justice.
- Throughout the gala, artist Deonna Craig will create a painting live, with the inspiration of Maya Angelou’s poem, Still I Rise, a nod to the gala’s theme, “Rise Up!” Craig’s painting will be offered as a prize drawing for TechPoint Foundation Youth.