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Toyota's Steven Curtis with Hahna Alexander.

Mother of Invention

“STEMinist” Hahna Alexander is turning footsteps into power

By WITW Staff on February 16, 2017

“I would tell young girls go into STEM, not just because we need you, but because it’s awesome,” says SolePower founder Hahna Alexander. It’s hard not to be impressed by the young inventor’s “connected workboots,” which transform footsteps into power. Her innovative idea earned her a spot as Toyota’s latest Mother of Invention.

At the 2017 Women in the World D.C. Salon, CNN Correspondent Athena Jones interviewed Alexander, a self-described “STEMinist,” about the initial spark of her ingenious idea, which occurred when she was still in college. Alexander is interested in self-sustained wearables that improve lives, or what she calls “wearable energy harvesting.” Her devices pull energy from walks and runs to charge useful electronics, and they’ve been used in construction and the U.S. Army.

Watch the full video to learn about her challenges, creative solutions, the future of self-charging technology, and her passion for space exploration. Plus, Toyota’s VP of Media and Engagement Marketing Steven Curtis shared Toyota’s commitment to innovation, and surprised Alexander with a major award.


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