Name: Samantha Radocchia aka “Sam Rad”
Location: Brooklyn, NY / Digital Nomad!
Occupation: Entrepreneur, Author, Speaker
Samantha Radocchia, also known as “Sam Rad” for short, is a woman leading the way toward the future. An entrepreneur, speaker, author, tech advocate, and skydiver, she is innovating and reconstructing the way we think about technology, currency, community, and beyond.
As a kid, Sam was exposed to a ton of tech, even though she may not have realized how it was going to shape her path.
“My brothers–and by extension, me–were into gaming, learning basic coding at a young age,” she says. “My dad ran a retail business and was a systems thinker. I remember running around in warehouses and being fascinated with all of the sorting machines, automation, computer programs running off the mainframe which would direct the packages to certain areas of the warehouse and certain trucks.”
In college, she became riveted by how technology interplayed with human behavior, so she dedicated her studies to anthropology, neuroscience, and theater.
Her anthropology thesis centered on a virtual world called Second Life, where Sam ran a small digital t-shirt shop and sold the digital t-shirts to other avatars in the world using virtual currency called Linden Dollars.
“That’s probably around when I got into bitcoin and could see this entirely new world forming where people spent more and more of their time in or on computers, phones, and technology,” she recalls. “Yet, while I found technology fascinating, I always found the change to be scary, and even a bit dystopian.”
She channeled this anxiety into a theater program where she created plays that focus on technology’s effects on people, particularly the elderly. The union of creativity, tech, and humanity is where Sam found her career; today she delivers keynote speeches all across the globe, and oversees corporate trainings that ensure companies that they will keep their workforce dynamically shifting with the current of tech in the future.
Sam’s path to entrepreneurial success in technology included some predictable speedbumps.
“In my personal experience, it was difficult to be a young woman in the tech space,” she says. “When I founded my first company, there weren’t many resources at the time to support women or other diverse folks in the industry. There were a number of times I would sit in meetings and be asked where my ‘technical co-founder’ was. I can also recall numerous accounts where investors or other folks in a position of power used that power to make inappropriate comments or advances.”
In spite of this, she wasn’t discouraged. Moving into conceptual thinking and blockchain, Sam started Chronicled, a company focused on a decentralized supply chain protocol and network.
On her blog, Radical Next, Sam showcases her ideas about technology’s impact on people and society.
“The concept of ‘Radical Evolution’ is where you let go of all assumptions, unlearn what you have learned or been conditioned to believe, and experience a sort of life-changing, world-changing, society-changing growth,” Sam says. “So Radical Next describes these radically new ideas, and of course, combines some elements of living a ‘rad life’.”
The driving force behind Sam is her passion for the future, the future of work, production, governance, cities, finance, health, sustainability, and beyond. Her writing, speaking, creating, and her contagious personality has led to success; in 2017, she was named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 List for Enterprise Technology. And have we mentioned that while her profile in the tech world has skyrocketed, she’s also a competitive skydiver with over 700 jumps to her name?
As she helps the world manifest a better future, Sam insists that we are all able to contribute on some level.
“We’re all taking part in building a new social operating system, the operating system of the future. A better future. A future where we restore connections with ourselves, with each other, with our environment, and with the products we consume,” she says.
Her work reminds us that we can all embrace the change by being empowered, as she was, by the global network we’re all a part of.
“My biggest support system has been, plain and simple, community.”
So what advice does Sam Rad have for young girls growing up in this age of new ideas?
“You are powerful. You are capable. You have a place as leaders in this world. Build the future that you want to live in. Speak up. Support others. Build Community. Have fun.”
For her work creating a better virtual world and reality, and for her incredible energy and dynamism, we think Sam Rad is a very, very Cool Girl!
To learn more about Sam Rad, follow her on Twitter, check out her blog Radical Next, or buy her book Bitcoin Pizza: The No-Bullshit Guide to Blockchain.