Geeked! - Black Enterprise
Black Enterprise Magazine September/October 2018 Issue

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Photo by Scott Council

Raissa Nebie
Age 31
Company Spoondate
Description Spoondate lets you explore your
culinary cravings and meet new people at the same time.

Raissa Nebie has always been a risk taker. The intrepid nature of this Côte d’Ivoire émigré with roots in Burkina Faso has taken her to the halls of Howard University, the rough-and-tumble offices of Wall Street, and the kitchens of the top-rated French Culinary Institute in New York City. She even left her position as a private equity associate to pursue her passion for fine cooking at Le Citrus Etoile, located steps from the Champs Elysées in Paris.

She quickly discovered that preparing food didn’t prove as rewarding as bringing people together through food. That epiphany led her to the idea for Spoondate–an online/mobile, location-based service helping food lovers make social and romantic connections.

“Culinary school led me to the Web,” says the 31-year-old entrepreneur. “I came home one evening and booked a one-way ticket. I got to San Francisco at the end of last summer and didn’t have a clue about what the city was about. I just knew there were lots of engineers.” But Nebie has now come to understand what so many entrepreneurs knew: Silicon Valley is to tech startups what Hollywood is to budding filmmakers. It’s the place where dreams come to life.

Nebie, who hadn’t used a computer before the age of 18, decided to learn several Internet languages, including CSS, HTML, and Java Script, enabling her to craft the user interface she wants her audience to experience.

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Join the Conversation

Marcia Wade Talbert

Marcia is a multimedia content producer focusing on technology at Black Enterprise Magazine. In this capacity she writes and assigns stories to educate readers about social media; digital integration; gadgets, apps, and software for business and professional development; minority tech startups; and careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). In 2012, she received two Salute to Excellence Awards from the National Association of Black Journalists and was recognized by Blacks in Technology (BiT) as one of the Top 10 Black achievers in the tech arena for 2011 at SXSW in Austin, Texas. She has spoken about technology on panels for New York Social Media Week, at The 2012 Rainbow/PUSH Wall Street Summit, as well as at Black Enterprise’s Entrepreneurs Conference and Women of Power Summit. In 2011, chose her as one of 28 People of Color Impacting the Social Web, and through crowdsourcing she was listed as one of BlackWeb2.0's/HP's 50 Most Notable African American Tastemakers in Social Media and Technology for 2010. Since taking on the role of Tech editor in September 2010, she has conceived and produced five cover stories on Technology and/or STEM and countless articles, videos, and slideshows online. Before joining as an interactive general assignment reporter in 2008, she freelanced with Black Enterprise beginning in 2003 while working as the technical editor at Prepared Foods magazine. There she further honed her writing skills and became an authority on food ingredients, including ingredients used in food fortification and enrichment. Meanwhile, her freelancing with Black Enterprise and helped her stay current on issues pertaining to the financial and business welfare of African Americans. As a general reporter for Black Enterprise she attended and reported on the Democratic and Republican National Conventions, where she interviewed Valerie Jarrett, senior advisor and assistant to President Barack Obama and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. Marcia has a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture with an emphasis in food science from the University of Minnesota, and a Master of Science degree in journalism from Roosevelt University in Chicago. En route to her secondary degree, she served as the editor-in-chief of the Roosevelt University Torch, a weekly, student-run newspaper. An avid photographer and videographer, Marcia is one of several employees at BLACK ENTERPRISE who interned for the publishing company as a college student. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, a food scientist; her seventeen-month-old daughter; and “The Cat”, but still considers Chicago home.