Who is JC Smiley

Hackathon Winner

On January 10, 2021, a friend and I submitted a mental health crisis app to the DigitalOcean 2021 App Hackathon. To our surprise, out of 4 categories and 600 teams, we won the grand prize in the "Power to the People" category. My greatest joy is that I helped create something that supports my friends and family who struggle with mental health issues.

The app is called "Help Me" and is designed primarily as an "SOS" (distress signal) to a selected circle of trusted people when someone is going through a mental health crisis. The goal is for the user to build a trusted community around themselves with private conversations and provide a system to show the user's range of emotions.

Active in the Tech Community

Since 2018, I have dedicated my time and energy to serving as a leader with the Memphis chapter of the non-profit organization Code Connector. In my capacity as the online community manager for the organization, I am responsible for igniting discussions and fostering valuable content within our vibrant Slack community, which now boasts over 1000 passionate members. Each month, I assist in organizing up to five physical or virtual technology meetups in Memphis, TN.

Code Connector is a community of aspiring developers and mentors networking together. It hosts online and physical tech meetups to foster a safe, friendly environment for learning and for mentors to teach people trying to break into the field of development.

Memphis, TN has a growing tech community for every technology and interest. I regularly attend DevMemphis, Memphis Web Workers, 901AI, and GDGMemphis.

Non-tech Related Passions

  • I come from a family of gardeners and my personal favorite plants to grow are peppers, cucumbers, melons, green beans, lettuce, and sweet potatoes.
  • I am an avid bicyclist. The farthest I have biked in one day is 80 miles.
  • I fell in love with hiking. I have hiked most of the state parks in north Mississippi and around Memphis, TN.