Houston skyline


The city of Houston has long been underestimated and compared to other major Southern cities. Houston has risen up through the ranks over the past decade to become one of the most promising technical cities both in the state of Texas and beyond. In fact, some of the greatest minds in the tech industry are working to make the city a better, more innovative place. 


With so much happening in the city’s tech scene, it’s only fair that we take the time to acknowledge a few of the people who have changed Houston’s tech industry for the better. Ready to meet some of Houston’s most influential people in tech? We’ve got the breakdown! 


Tech Job Trends in Houston


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The tech scene in Houston is continuing to grow! 


So, what makes the city of Houston so great? For starters, the city is completely dedicated to its job and economic growth. Job growth in the city has steadily been on the rise over the past decade and shows no signs of slowing down. The city is also known for its diversity and collaboration amongst multiple industries. Curious as to just how well Houston’s doing? Let’s get to the cold hard facts. 


Houston by Numbers 


The simple truth is, Houston’s prospering. While it may not be the first place that many think of when pondering major tech hubs, that’s all about to change. The city has worked tirelessly to build it’s multiple prospering industries into the lucrative economy that the city enjoys today. 


Many major corporations and startups alike work together in the spirit of collaboration to make the city of Houston better for everyone who lives there. One of the most notable things about Houston’s economy is how diverse it is. The biggest industries in Houston’s workforce include finance, construction, oil, tech, aerospace, gas, and more. 


You may be wondering where the tech industry fits into all of this. That’s the beauty of Houston; tech is immersed into the core of all industries in the city. Pick any major corporation or job in Houston, and you’d be hard-pressed to find one that doesn’t work with tech in some way. The tech industry completely evolved in Houston, creating more jobs, better compensation, and more opportunities for tech workers who choose to call the city home. 


Houston’s Tech Influencers


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These are just a few of the many tech influencers in Houston! 


Now that we’ve gotten our economics lesson for the day, we can finally get down to business. By this point, you’re probably ready to see some of the biggest names in Houston’s tech scene. Before we dive in, it’s important to keep in mind that these are just a few of the many people who have worked to make Houston’s tech scene a better place! 


1. Estefannie Explains it All 

Computer Scientist and Social Media Influencer 

Estefannie is a computer scientist, engineer, designer, self-proclaimed ‘punk rocker.’ She has a significant social media influence that has garnered over 60K followers on Instagram and 27K subscribers on YouTube. 


Through her social media channels, Estefannie details all of her engineering prototypes, experiments, and failures through Estefannie Explains It All. 


2. Lori-Lee Elliott

Co-Founder of Future Sight AR and Social Media Influencer 

Lori Lee Elliott is the co-founder of Future Sight AR, an augmented reality program that helps industrial workers visualize their work before breaking ground on projects. Future Sight AR dedicates itself to helping a variety of industries save time and money by getting technical projects right the first time. 


Elliott is also a partner at Wedge Technologies, a public speaker, mentor, and social media influencer. She currently holds multiple degrees from the University of Toronto and was awarded a Graduate Fellowship from NYU in 2013. 


3. Harvin Moore 

President of Houston Exponential 

Harvin Moore is the President of Houston Exponential, a startup incubator dedicated to growing Houston’s technology economy and innovation. Moore is also the Principal of Frontera Technology Ventures.


Moore has a BA in both Economics and Political Science from Northwestern University and an MBA in Finance from NYU Stern School of Business. Moore is currently the Director of the Houston Angel Network and TXRX Labs. He is also a Board Trustee for KIPP Houston Public Schools, a Mentor at Station Houston, and a Council Member at NationSwell. 


4. Chris Buckner

Co-Founder and CEO of Mainline.GG

Chris Buckner is the co-founder and CEO of Mainline.GG, an esports tournament software that helps organizers manage, monetize, and market esports events and programs. Buckner is also the co-founder and CEO of FanReact. 


Buckner graduated from Texas A&M University – Mays Business School in 2007. 


5. Rakesh Agrawal

Founder and CEO of SnapStream

Rakesh Agrawal is the founder and CEO of SnapStream. SnapStream is a TV recording, clipping, and monitoring company that lets users record and then search for any person, icon, or thing recorded on television. The software is used by major industry icons, including The Daily Show, Buzzfeed, CBS, NBC, and even the U.S Senate and White House. 


Aside from running SnapStream, Agrawal has also been an angel investor for the past seven years, investing in over 80 startups. Agrawal graduated from Rice University in 1998 with degrees in both Mechanical Engineering and Computer Science. 


6. Daniel Baker 

Founder and CEO of FlightAware

Daniel Baker is the founder and CEO of FlightAware, the largest digital aviation and flight tracking company in the world. Baker leads over 100 employees at offices in Houston, New York, Austin, London, and Singapore. 


Baker is currently on the board of directors for General Aviation Manufacturers Association and the Smithsonian Institution at the National Air and Space Museum. Baker holds two patents for the innovative technology used at FlightAware. 


Before starting FlightAware, Baker was the Vice President and founding executive at Superconnect, a broadband internet startup. 


7. Gabriella Rowe

CEO of Station Houston

Gabriella Rowe is the CEO of Station Houston, a startup incubator dedicated to changing the way startups navigate Houston’s tech scene. 


Rowe is also an adjunct professor of entrepreneurship at the University of St. Thomas Cameron School of Business and Executive Director of The Ion. 


8. Lawson Gow

Founder of The Cannon

Lawson Gow is the founder of The Cannon, a coworking space and startup incubator. The Cannon has locations all across the Houston area and has been helping to foster a welcoming and innovative startup community in the Houston area since 2017. Gow later went on to open Cannon Ventures, a startup funding and mentor institution in 2018.


Gow graduated from Rice University in 2013 and joined the global VC group KPMG Capital. Gow is also a published author of 2 children’s poetry books. 


The Takeaway


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How does all this info affect your career goals? 


At this point, you’re probably wondering how all these people relate to you. If you’re considering making your mark on Houston’s tech scene, knowing the who’s who of the industry you’re working in is never a bad thing. You never know when you might know someone who knows someone else, and that someone else happens to be a hiring manager at your dream company. In short, it’s never a bad idea to make connections. 


Even if you’re not looking to call the Lone Star State home, keeping up on the latest news in the tech industry is also a surefire way to boost your career. Finding inspiration from your peers and paying attention to the innovations of others can significantly improve your own job performance. Who knows, you may even learn a thing or two about tech in the process! 

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