Angie Byron, known as Webchick in the Drupal community, is a woman in tech for whom I have great admiration and respect. There are still many days when being a woman in tech is not super comfortable, and Angie's presence in the Drupal community makes a big difference to me. Just having a woman out there, who is visible at a high level in the Drupal community and is also accessible, honest, thoughtful and community-minded... she's inspiring. She's on the cover of Linux Journal this month. Congrats, Angie! Part of the interview is online. Here's a great snippet.
The part where she talks about a "meritocratic bent" that allows women to gain traction "regardless of their background" reminds me of the stories of many women accidental techies in the nonprofit tech community, some of whom have worked their way into intentional tech careers in spite of many obstacles.
I also can't say for sure why Drupal attracts more women than other projects. I think in part it's the nature of the project—Drupal is a project for building websites and there are lots of women involved in website design and development, moreso perhaps than kernel hacking. But I think there are important cultural reasons, too. The Drupal community has a strong meritocratic bent that elevates people who work hard, regardless of their background. As a result, we have women in a number of key positions in the community, including the board of the Drupal Association, leaders of the documentation team, and even core maintainers. ;)