Founder & Managing Partner, Copper & Vine Studio, Co.
Rakia Finley is the Founding Partner at Copper & Vine Studio, an American Software Executive, Product Developer, Salesforce MVP, WIT User Group Leader, Partner, Developer & Architect, Mother, Private Investor, and Philanthropist.
Rakia recently founded and developed StepFwd a mobile app action and education tool supporting the advancement of equality for all. Along with running By Grace an international restoration retreat for change-makers in society.
She is best known for her work with the Obama Administration on their “Girls in STEM” initiative and her development of a custom Artificial Intelligence engine for UK Enterprise Corporations. She continues to develop innovative technology solutions and community initiatives that promote diversity in STEM industries.
Named FemTech’s 2016 & 2017 Powerful Woman Programmer, she is one of the highest-earning African-American females in the software industry and North America’s first black female owner of an Artificial Intelligence (AI) and product development firm.
Raised by a single parent in Portland, Oregon, Rakia would spend her evenings waiting for her mother to get off work. Her time in the office was where Rakia got her first chance to enter data into a custom database. At 15 years old, she convinced the executive team of the Washington Hospital Center to hire her on a contract basis to provide data entry for their billing department. After one year of working with the Hospital, Rakia matched the efforts of a five person database team on her own and converted a 78% paper process to 10%, moving their 2002 billing system to a fully digital data gathering solution and enhancing their medical data input into a 98% accuracy metric. By 19, Rakia was the founder of PinStripe Consulting, a database development firm. After delivering over 500 custom database solutions to nonprofits, she launched Surge Assembly; a full-service software development firm focused on enhancing company revenues. In 2006 Rakia was one of the first black female consultants to implement Salesforce to Nonprofits and Businesses nationally and has architected over 500 custom Salesforce solutions in her career.
Rakia’s determination for better software led her to build a custom AI solution for Starwood Hotels in 2006, making them the first hotel with virtual booking and room management. By 2010, Rakia reinvented Surge Assembly with a focus on educating business leaders on active engineering and software development, with an underlying emphasis on inclusion, diversity, executive mindfulness, and removing bias. She has also emerged as an “entrepreneur’s dream come true”, delivering products for founders that have averaged over $27 million in acquisition in as little as six months time.
In 2015, Rakia Co-Founded FIN Digital, a full-service senior-level development firm, building artificial intelligence, natural language processors, software, and hardware applications for over 300 company founders and organizations. In 2018, Copper & Vine – a creative solutions agency in the business of re-imagining – was formed as an augmentation of FIN Digital’s work to blend Rakia’s passions: inventing award-winning technologies, making companies that scale, and building brands that produce results.
Outside of managing her companies, Rakia continues to lead initiatives on workplace challenges for women of color in hopes of developing solutions for building more productive and inclusive workplaces. Rakia is the founder of Let Girls Build, which produces the Ideation Garden, Women Who Redefine Awards, and additional initiatives geared toward educating future female leaders on the tools needed to master and alter working in male-dominated industries. Rakia continues to direct private investment opportunities to women inventors internationally and she speaks throughout the year on the power of inclusion, the responsibility of an ally, and the importance of stepping into your executive presence.
Credited with creating a more realistic approach to data, innovation, business development, and solution-based engineering, Rakia continues to revolutionize how organizations and businesses utilize technology as a resource for enhancing exceptional growth.