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Wyoming Innovator and Language I/O CEO, Heather Shoemaker, Named to Inc.’s 2024 Female Founders List

Image of Heather Shoemaker, CEO and founder of Language I/O

Cheyenne, Wyoming – Cheyenne-based Language I/O founder and CEO, Heather Shoemaker, was recently recognized in Inc. Magazine’s seventh annual Female Founders list, an esteemed accolade honoring 250 women whose innovations and ideas are making significant business impacts. Shoemaker is the only woman recognized from Wyoming.

“As a woman in tech, I’m proud to work with Heather. She’s not only a brilliant technologist and foremost thought leader in artificial intelligence (AI), but also a staunch advocate for women in tech leadership,” says Sheridan Orr, Chief Marketing Officer for Language I/O (LIO).

In addition to this recognition, Shoemaker and her company were the first recipients of a direct equity investment from the Wyoming Venture Capital (WYVC) fund in August 2023.

“Heather is tenacious and possesses the grit investors seek in a founder. Language I/O is tackling incredibly challenging problems in the AI translation space. Coupled with the challenge of building a business in Wyoming, we were thrilled to invest,” shares Bert Adam, Investments Director for the Wyoming Business Council. “This was not just an investment in Language I/O, but also an investment in Heather, her vision, leadership, and the future of Wyoming. Heather is an extraordinary example of success for all founders including other women and girls, demonstrating that anything is possible with hard work and determination.”

Founded in 2011, LIO’s core business offers customer service language translation for a growing number of global firms in the Fortune 500. The company was initially self-funded, but after realizing the large-scale market opportunity, began seeking outside funding. Shoemaker shared her company’s vision across the state and received initial investments from Casper-based Breakthrough 307 and Jackson-based Silicon Couloir Angel Group investors. She also received an early Kickstart grant from the WBC.

Women like Shoemaker on the Inc. list are reinventing everything from shoes to food and challenging issues like financial literacy and reproductive health.

Diana Ransom, Inc.’s Executive Editor, adds: “The past year, for many, will go down as one of the hardest ever—between a funding freeze and ad-spending pullback. The female founders on this year’s list are a testament to what triumph over adversity looks like.”

To learn more about Language I/O and Shoemaker’s vision in Wyoming, watch the Business Council’s recent Breaking Through: Stories from Wyoming Pioneers episode at


About Language I/O

Language I/O is an AI-powered translation platform with seamless integrations to Salesforce, Zendesk, ServiceNow, Microsoft, and Oracle. With real-time, business-accurate translation technology, Language I/O helps enterprise companies serve their customers in over 150 languages with their existing teams. Language I/O has industry-leading security which encrypts all customer personal information and adheres to a strict zero data retention policy.

About Wyoming Venture Capital

Through federal funds provided by the U.S. Treasury’s State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI), the Wyoming Business Council launched Wyoming Venture Capital (WYVC) at the beginning of April 2023. Designed to support the innovation and growth needs of entrepreneurs across the state, WYVC is an equity financing option for Wyoming high-growth companies with an eye toward future exit. 

Utilizing two investment strategies – the Direct Strategy and Funds Strategy – WYVC supports the growth of Wyoming entrepreneurs. Ultimately, both strategies are designed to support in-state companies and to help bridge the early gaps in startup equity funding.

About Inc.

Inc. is the world’s leading business-media brand, offering entrepreneurs the resources and community needed to build successful companies. With a monthly reach of over 50 million individuals across various platforms, Inc. provides essential knowledge, tools, and connections to empower entrepreneurs. The annual Inc. 5000 list recognizes the fastest-growing privately held businesses in the United States, providing unparalleled opportunities for founders to engage with a global community and bolster their businesses’ credibility. For more information, visit

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