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The Atlanta-based technology conference Render ATL begins Wednesday. The three-day event aims to be a platform for Atlanta’s innovators.

According to Justin Samuels, the event’s CEO, Atlanta’s innovator ecosystem sits at the intersection of hip-hop and business, redefining innovation from the perspective of young black and brown creatives.

“What I’m saying is that the South is tired of being singled out and having its talent taken away,” Samuels said.

This year, Render is expected to attract over 5,000 attendees and feature over 100 speakers, including Georgia Pro Football Hall of Fame member Shannon Sharpe, who will deliver the keynote address. Technology giants such as Microsoft, Google and Amazon are sponsoring the event.

“We want to be one of the top five tech hubs,” said Donnie Beamer, Atlanta’s first senior tech advisor. “But I would point out that the fine print is that we have to do this fairly.”

Organizers hope to provide attendees with important contacts in fields such as cybersecurity, artificial intelligence and software development. According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, about a third of the tech industry is nonwhite.

Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens said he would have loved something like this as a child.

“These are things that you didn’t see very often 20 years ago. You didn’t see very often that African Americans could take on leadership roles in the technology industry,” Dickens said.

He said it was great to see this happen for the next generation of innovators.

“The people who come after us in the next generations, and even the kids who are in high school or college now, say, ‘How can I be a part of this?'” Dickens said.

Dickens hopes Atlanta will have more events that encourage the growth of local innovators so the city can benefit from the economic impact of the technology industry.

This is all happening during Atlanta Tech Week, a series of events across Atlanta to engage the city’s local startup community. The main conference is taking place at AmericasMart in downtown Atlanta through Friday, June 14.

DJ Pee Wee, also known as Grammy Award winner Anderson.Paak, will perform at the conference after-party concert.

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