ActivityHero CTO and Co-Founder Shilpa Dalmia Speaks at Hackbright Academy on Starting Up as a Mompreneur


Shilpa Dalmia is the CTO and co-founder of ActivityHero, a 500 Startups-backed company in San Jose. She is a mompreneneur and shares her advice from a technical leader’s perspective at Hackbright Academy.
Shilpa Dalmia
Chief Technology Officer & Co-Founder, ActivityHero
Shilpa talked about ActivityHero’s Ruby on Rails dev stack, along with tools and frameworks. She went over Heroku, Git, Amazon S3, Google Analytics, CrazyEgg, Optimizely (A/B testing tool), SendGrid (for transactional emails), MailChimp for newsletters, Postgres, Redis and geocoder.

“I have no regrets in my career. I took a break from my career to have kids and came up with the idea for my startup ActivityHero.

The summer students at Hackbright Academy met mompreneur Shilpa Dalmia. She talked about climbing the career ladder in engineering until stepping off to have kids and co-founding ActivityHero as Chief Technology Officer. The startup helps parents find the right activities for their children, and is backed by the 500 Startups accelerator.

“I picked up a book on Ruby on Rails, I just learned it. ActivityHero was my project two years ago and it’s been great!”

Shilpa talked about building the ActivityHero webapp as her “exercise” in learning Ruby on Rails. Two years later, the company is backed by 500 Startups and still going strong. She asked every student at Hackbright Academy what she used to do before Hackbright, and what kind of job she wanted to get. The results varied but the bottom line is that Hackbright Academy students will become software engineers. After getting to know the students, Shilpa dived into the dev stack at ActivityHero.

The CTO reviewed the deployment process at ActivityHero, from staging server to production server. She covered the basics, from Heroku dynos to Git and GitHub, and then showed the class the Heroku dashboard for ActivityHero. She explained plugins to the students, encouraging the students to find the right plugins to help make their development lives easier and more robust.

Shilpa said, “It was great to speak to a bunch of highly motivated tech women at Hackbright academy. It’s so great to see more and more women coding and wanting to pursue a career in core engineering!! Kudos to Hackbright Academy for this initiative.”

Thanks to Shilpa Dalmia for coming out and meeting the students at Hackbright Academy – we have at least two moms in the class at Hackbright Academy, and it’s inspiring to meet technical women leaders who have it all – the successful career in tech, being a mom, living the entrepreneurial lifestyle and rocking the CTO title. It’s great to meet technical women who successfully wear all these hats.

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