This Is Where Philly’s Biggest Tech Talent Will Work
Seventeen years ago, Karen Dougherty Buchholz established Comcast’s corporate communications department. In 2003, she transitioned roles to oversee administration, which includes diversity and inclusion, political affairs, security, sustainability and corporate real estate, including the development of the Comcast Center in 2005. Today, she is the executive in charge of the development of the Comcast Technology Center, which will serve as the tallest structure in Philadelphia upon its completion next year.
The Comcast Technology Center will house over 4,000 workers with a mission of developing world-class technology. This will grow the city’s workforce of engineers, software developers, platform architects and technologists. “We know that in addition to hiring the best talent, we have to provide the best resources and environment to encourage innovation,” she explains. UnitedHealthcare and Philadelphia magazine spoke with Buchholz to learn more about how Comcast continues to grow and provide opportunities in our city.
What is the biggest advantage to living and working in Philadelphia?
We have a fantastic infrastructure—from public transportation, education and arts and culture to outdoor activities and great open park space. Philadelphia is a wonderful place to work, live and raise a family. Metropolitan regions need strong cores to be successful, and that’s what makes Philadelphia so attractive and great. I think Philadelphia has it all.
What does Comcast do to give back to the local community?
As Comcast founder Ralph J. Roberts once famously observed, the healthier and more vibrant the communities are where our employees and customers live and work, the healthier and more vibrant our company will be. This year alone, more than 10,600 volunteers participated in over 150 projects around the greater Philadelphia area as part of Comcast Cares Day, an annual celebration of our year-round commitment to volunteerism. We have more than 50 executives serving on nonprofit boards in the area. We are actively engaged in all of the communities we serve, but we’re particularly passionate about positively impacting the greater Philadelphia region.
How do you encourage advancement for employees, specifically those with diverse backgrounds?
Comcast has a company-wide commitment to diversity and inclusion. We have leaders from across our company championing diversity within their teams, from our CEO to our Senior EVP and Chief Diversity Officer, David L. Cohen, to each of our cable division and business unit presidents. Our success starts and ends with our workforce. Our employees drive our innovation. We’re very proud that women and people of color make up over 60 percent of our workforce today, and that 47 percent of our vice presidents and above are women or people of color. Diversity is not only the right thing to do, but it’s also good business. I would say inclusion of all people and ideas has become part of our success and DNA.
How is the city developing its tech imprint?
Philadelphia is attracting and retaining great talent as evidenced by our millennial population. Innovation and creativity are permeating our city, from co-working spaces to start-up communities in neighborhoods such as University City, the Navy Yard and Fishtown to name a few. I’d like to think that we at Comcast are part of this exciting change in the city and that the Comcast Technology Center will help drive it even further.
Innovation starts by serving the community, and the people, who inspire you to chase your passion. That’s why UnitedHealthcare is proud to shine a spotlight on Philadelphia’s forward thinkers and their outside the box ideas through the Inspiring Innovation series. To find out more about UnitedHealthcare, visit uhc.com/phillyinnovation.This is a paid partnership between UnitedHealthcare and Philadelphia Magazine's City/Studio