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Diane Drops a Beat for Innovation and Diversity

CEO Diane Hessan had the honor of kicking-off an exciting day of learning, celebrating, and rap (see below) at BostInno's State of Innovation Forum, yesterday at the Westin Waterfront. Addressing a room full of makers and doers and entrepreneurs who pride themselves on progress, Diane started off by suggesting that, from Boston's accelerators, shark tanks, and IPO's, we may have reached our tipping point. But, diversity—gender, ethnic, age, and industrial—can take us to the next level. In Diane's words:

Let's expand our dynamic and innovative community. Look up and look out... Expand your business by listening to all voices and perspectives.

Here are some tweets from her keynote:

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And then—a true lyricist—she dropped a beat, rallying the room to sing back-up in an original work, the Boston State of Innovation Rap. Check it:[bctt tweet="Lyrics and footage from @Diane_Hessan's State of Innovation rap #BOSSOI"]


Oom-Pah, Oom-Pah

Boom Boom Boom

Innovation’s here

So let’s rock it in this room.


Once upon a time on Milk Street

Mrs. Franklin had

A son, his name was Ben—

A true electrical lad.

From lightning rods to bifocals,

His contributions—wow!

He inspired innovation

And look where we are now.

It’s Boston, Massachusetts:

The City on a Hill,

The Athens of America,

Beantown, Collegeville.

The Home of Fenway’s Faithful,

The Atlantic Ocean’s Door,

And maybe An Olympic Home

In Twenty-24.


Universities and patents,

 and not to be outsmarted,

Lots of tech and R&D—

And we’re just getting started.

We can hack and we can crush

And put on a thinking cap.

Go in stealth, change the game,

We can close the talent gap.

Javascript and iOS,

 Angular is fine.


They put us on cloud nine.

We do robots, analytics,

We’re a nanotech machine,

Our wearable’s the future,

We’re scaling AND we’re green.


Kendall Square & Seaport

Downtown Crossing, Dudley Square.

VC's, entrepreneurs—

They say, I do declare—

"We’re the Amazon of healthcare,

We’ll be bigger than DraftKings.

We’re a rocket ship that pivots,

We’re the Internet of Things.

We’re disrupting the disrupters,

We’re like Facebook, but we’re free.

We’re a cross between an Uber

And an Airbnb.

We are crushing all our metrics.

We’ll be profitable soon.

We’ve got valuable data and

We’re going to the moon!"


With ideas and brainpower,

Tons of companies are born.

And our very favorite animal’s

Become the unicorn.

Crowdsource, anticipate

Bootstrap, collaborate

Scale-up, incubate

Make an app, accelerate.

Healthcare, fintech,

Edtech and more,

Let’s spend our vacation days

At the Apple Store.

We love our social media,

Noncompetes go in the bin, Oh—

We love mobile and MakerBots,

And yes—we love BostInno.


You’ll probably be sad to know

Our little rap ends here.

Time to hear the future trends,

And in five hours, beer!

It's up to all of us to say

What our future holds

Are we one big startup?

And how can we be bold?

Today we stop and celebrate

Our great community.

Looking in this room,

You can feel the energy.

Boston, Boston!

We say this rap out loud,

And at our State of Innovation—

Ben Franklin would be proud.

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