We all know that the technology industry has a gender problem. But how do you move the needle from awareness to action?

Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, and Girls Who Code, a nonprofit tech group, have an idea: take the fight to the states. On Friday, both will host the first-ever Girls Who Code Governor’s Summit at Facebook’s headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif. The guest list includes Govs. Mary Fallin of Oklahoma and Gina Raimondo of Rhode Island and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds of Iowa.

Many organizations aimed at improving gender equality in the tech field have focused on changing the culture at tech companies in the past. But this is the first time an effort is aimed at the state level.

“​What’s great about having these governors and state officials involved is that they set the educational agenda for their states,” Sandberg said. And, she said, reaching young kids — as Girls Who Code has done on a smaller scale — is key to improving tech’s gender problems long-term.

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