Pairing women entrepreneurs from around the world with mentors in Dublin

Vital Voices Global Partnership and Bank of America will bring together women leaders in the private sector and social enterprise to Dublin, Ireland October 8–12, for the Global Ambassadors Program (GAP), a weeklong initiative to help women entrepreneurs succeed. The program highlights the role of women as drivers of economic growth and addresses the ongoing needs and challenges that women leaders face around the world.

The Dublin Global Ambassadors Program will pair a diverse group of women leaders of small businesses and social enterprises (mentees) with 11 Global Ambassador mentors, established women executives from a range of sectors and organizations, including Bank of America, for a week of one-on-one mentoring and workshops focused on building business acumen and enhancing skills in key areas such as leadership, financial management, business strategy, and communications.

“We recognize that women play a vital role in driving economic growth within their communities and in the global economy,” said Anne Finucane, vice chairman, Bank of America. “We’re committed to helping women entrepreneurs succeed by providing them the resources to contribute to stronger economies, accelerating the rate of economic and social development.”

Since the program launched in 2012, 17 successful Global Ambassadors Programs have been held in Haiti, South Africa, India, Singapore, Brazil, Qatar, Mexico, Northern Ireland, Poland, Japan, the United Kingdom, Australia and the United States, bringing together a total of 291 women (141 Global Ambassadors and 150 mentees) from 76 countries.

“We’re thrilled to mark the sixth year of our partnership with Bank of America,” said Alyse Nelson, president and CEO of Vital Voices. “Mentorship accelerates leadership, and Dublin is a fitting location for our 18th program. One in every 14 women in Ireland is an entrepreneur ‒ one of the highest rates of entrepreneurship among women in Europe.”   

In conjunction with the Dublin program, Bank of America will host a global forum on October 9, featuring distinguished leaders and entrepreneurs who will discuss the importance of women’s role in driving economic and social progress. Martha Stewart, entrepreneur and founder of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, and Bank of America Vice Chairman Anne Finucane will speak at the event.

The Global Ambassadors Program is part of Bank of America’s and Vital Voices’ ongoing commitment to investing in women’s leadership development, a goal guided by the belief that strong leaders are important for developing healthy, vibrant communities and advancing economic growth. Bank of America invests in helping women make meaningful contributions within the company and supports the economic empowerment of women in local communities and around the world.

For more information, visit our Global Ambassadors Program page. Follow @BofA_News and @VitalVoices for updates via #GlobalAmbassadors.

Please see below for our GAP Dublin mentor and mentee pairings.

Dublin Global Ambassadors

Jocelyn Mangan
Founder of Him for Her
Oakland, California, USA

Jocelyn Mangan has two decades of technology experience building iconic global mobile apps and market-leading software products at some of the world’s best local, consumer and marketplace companies, including CitySearch, Ticketmaster, OpenTable and Snagajob.

At Snagajob, Jocelyn was responsible for building the end-to-end product experience. For OpenTable, she defined the vision, strategy and development of its consumer and restaurant products and drove large initiatives to transform it to an experience-based company. At TicketMaster, Jocelyn successfully led the first multilingual Olympic ticketing website from concept to implementation.

Jocelyn was a member of the 2016 class of Henry Crown Fellows and the Aspen Global Leadership Network at the Aspen Institute. Prior to that, Jocelyn was named to Fast Company’s 2015 list of “100 Most Creative People in Business” and to Business Insider’s 2014 list of the “32 Most Powerful Women in Mobile Advertising.“

Jocelyn founded Him for Her, a social enterprise whose aim is to change for-profit boards of directors to include the world’s most talented women. She currently serves on the board of ChowNow, an online food ordering system and marketing platform.

Jocelyn received her bachelor’s degree in English and communications from Vanderbilt University.

Michelle Tunno Buelow
Founder of Bella Tunno
Charlotte, North Carolina, USA

Michelle Buelow is the founder and CEO of Bella Tunno, a personality-filled baby and parent accessory brand launched in 2005. Bella Tunno has two fully owned brands that are sold in over 3,000 independent boutiques and numerous mass retail outlets. As part of Bella Tunno’s commitment to philanthropy and parenting with purpose, a meal is provided to an American child for every product sold. Since the launch of Bella Tunno, over 1.5 million meals have been provided to hungry children in the USA. 
Michelle is passionate about drug and alcohol rehabilitation efforts and is a founding member of the Endowment Board of the Charlotte Rescue Mission. She also sits on the board of Fashion & Compassion, an organization committed to transforming the lives of women in destructive situations in seven countries.

Both Michelle and Bella Tunno have been recognized at local and national levels for business, entrepreneurial and charitable awards, including Charlotte’s Top 40 under 40, Charlotte’s Woman Business Achievement award, finalist for Ernst & Young's Carolina Entrepreneur of the Year award, Charlotte Business Leader Women Extraordinaire recipient, The Mecklenburg Times Most Influential Women honoree, Ernst & Young Winning Women Award recipient, Corporate Volunteerism Award winner, winner of’s Top 50 Mompreneurs and Charlotte’s Top 50 Entrepreneur Award winner.

Ellen Voie
Founder, President and CEO of Women In Trucking Association, Inc.
Plover, Wisconsin, USA

Ellen Voie is the founder, president and CEO of the Women In Trucking Association, formed to encourage the employment of women in the trucking industry, promote their accomplishments and minimize obstacles faced by women working in the trucking industry.

Previously, Ellen was the manager of retention and recruiting programs at Schneider, Inc., where she was responsible for creating corporate level programs to encourage nontraditional groups to consider careers in the trucking industry and designed initiatives to eliminate (or reduce) irritants that lead to driver dissatisfaction.

Ellen has received many awards, including The White House’s Transportation Innovators Champion of Change in 2012 and the University of Wisconsin—Stevens Point Division of Communication’s Distinguished Alumna of the Year. She was named to Supply & Demand Chain Executive magazine’s “2016 Pros to Know,” Fleet Owner’s Dozen Outstanding Women In Trucking in 2016, and Insight Success magazine’s “The 30 Most Inspirational Leaders in Business” and "The 30 Most Innovative CEOs to Watch" in 2017.

In addition to the magazine articles she writes, Ellen shares her experiences and knowledge in her two books and workbook created for professional drivers and their families.

Ellen has a master’s degree in communication from the University of Wisconsin—Stevens Point.

Michelle Pesce
Founder of Nona Entertainment
Los Angeles, California, USA

Michelle Pesce grew up in with a deep love for 80s and 90s hip-hop and pop. During her career in personal publicity at Wolf-Kasteler, Michelle attended Woodstock ’99 and was moved by the energy created when you mix some of the world's best artists and 200,000 fans. This inspired her to begin DJing, and soon after, she bought a set of Technics turntables to teach herself the craft. A year later she was introduced to DJ Spinderella (Salt-N-Pepa) who served as a mentor and helped launch Michelle into the LA hip-hop scene. In 2004, she left her publicity career to focus on DJing full time. Since then, Michelle has performed at private parties and clubs in France, Spain, Kenya, Uganda, Canada, Haiti, Anguilla and Mexico, and is a staple in the Hollywood event scene.

In 2015, Michelle expanded her business by starting Nona Entertainment, an artist entertainment company. Nona works closely with clients and DJs to craft the perfect musical vibe for a wide range of events.

After 18 years in the music industry, Michelle shows no signs of slowing down. She has expanded her focus to include her multiple passions — DJing, Nona Entertainment, activism and uniting female DJs.

Jennifer M. Sloan
Vice President of Public Policy at Mastercard Canada
Toronto, Canada

Jennifer Sloan has extensive experience across all aspects of government, media and public relations, and internal and external affairs. In addition to working for Target (Canada), York University and Vale (Inco) Ltd., she also worked with some of Canada’s leading government and political figures. As the vice president of public policy at Mastercard Canada, Jennifer is currently in charge of developing and managing the company’s public affairs and government relations programs.

Jennifer is a director and treasurer of the Canadian American Business Council (CABC), as well as a G(irls)20 board director. She is the chair of the University of Georgia’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication’s Board of Trust (BOT). She previously served as the president of the Grady College Alumni Board, the president of the Canadian Club of Toronto and the chair-elect of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce (OCC) Board of Directors.

She was honored with the Grady Fellowship at the University of Georgia in November 2013, the Henry W. Grady Alumni Award and the Sigma Kappa National Colby Award in 2007, and a Minister’s Citation for Foreign Policy Excellence in 1996.

Jennifer has a bachelor of arts degree in journalism from the University of Georgia in Athens, Georgia.

Maria Kim
President & CEO, Cara
Chicago, Illinois, USA

After 13 years in the insurance industry (with her last position leading the technology division for a $400-million insurance firm), Maria made the leap from the private to the purpose sector and in 2005, joined Cara—a social purpose organization uplifting people and communities through the power of employment.

Cara helps people affected by poverty secure and keep good jobs by producing hundreds of jobs each year at retention rates over 20 points higher than national norms, and with nearly 80 percent of employed participants moving on to permanent housing in which their families can thrive. For every dollar invested in Cara’s work, $5.97 is reinvested in society over a five-year time horizon. 

Maria’s civic leadership includes service on the Cook County Commission on Social Innovation, focusing on investments in the county’s people and on inclusive employment. Her board leadership includes service with EPIC Academy, Rebuilding Exchange, Chicago Women in Philanthropy, Leadership Fellows Association and Horizons for Youth.

She was a fellow for Leadership Greater Chicago’s Class of 2008, a 2010 Bank of America Neighborhood Builder, a 2012 American Marshall Memorial Fellow and a 2013 TEDxMidwest Emerging Leader. Maria holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Nadiia Vasylieva
Founder of Digital Transformation Corporation; Co-founder of the Digital Transformation Institute
Kiev, Ukraine

Nadiia is an expert and evangelist on using the IoT, blockchain and big-data capabilities in and out of business. She is an independent director for several commercial companies in fintech, cyber security and digital transformation spheres.
Over 12 years of development of the number-one telecommunications player in Ukraine, Kyivstar Company, three years in the field of logistics for the quality of GM Amway, and five years as the GM of the Black Sea region for Microsoft, Nadiia led more than 1,000 employees with her expertise and leadership. She is a developer of such communities as WELDI, created by ACC, European Woman Entrepreneurship and Women in Boards 2020.
Nadiia is a role model and activist on gender equality and representation of women and girls in STEM disciplines, and she acts as a mentor for more than 10 women and girls.
Nadiia has a PhD in economics and an MBA, and studied international law and intellectual property at universities, including LBS (UK), MIT, Kellogg (USA) and IMD (Switzerland).

Bevin Mahon
Managing Director, Dental Tech
Dublin, Ireland

In 2001, Bevin joined Dental Tech to set up a computerized accounting software program. Seeing huge potential for the company, it grew quickly—from two employees to 17—and by 2007, they moved to a larger space. Today, Dental Tech improves the quality of life for the aging population of Ireland by providing a proactive and accessible mobile dental and denture service in the comfort of the client’s own home, nursing home or regional clinic.

Bevin is a passionate leader and combines her own personal growth with the business growth. In 2017, she qualified as an Engage and Grow coach, mentoring and coaching the team to engage and motivate them and to help build on the company vision.  

In 2018, Dental Tech won the All Ireland All Star Business Awards, and Bevin was accredited as an All Ireland All Star Thought Leader in Community Health (Dental) for the nursing home dental and denture service she developed.

Bevin received her bachelor’s degree in social science in 1999 from the University College Dublin.

Holly A. O’Neill
Head of Consumer Client Services, Bank of America
Marblehead, Massachusetts, USA

Holly leads Consumer Client Services for Bank of America and co-chairs the Client Experience Council, a cross-functional team guiding the consumer and small business organizations in delivering world-class client care. 

Holly previously served as chief operating officer (COO) for U.S. Trust®, Bank of America Private Wealth Management, overseeing strategic initiatives, business management, risk infrastructure and control, enterprise partnerships, and sales and service effectiveness. 

Prior to her role as COO for U.S. Trust, she held a variety of positions in the Global Wealth & Investment Management division, including as a sales performance executive, as well as COO for the Merrill Lynch Wealth Management® Private Banking and Investment Group.

Holly joined Bank of America in 1996 as a credit analyst trainee. She spent six years working in various roles in the Corporate and Investment Bank, covering a portfolio of insurance and asset management clients, and was the COO of Corporate Banking Group.

She is currently the co-executive sponsor of the Massachusetts LGBT Pride Employee Network and has also served as the co-executive sponsor for the Virtual Leadership, Education, Advocacy and Development for Woman organization.

Holly received a bachelor of science degree in business from the University of New Hampshire. She is a Chartered Financial Analyst and is a member of both the Boston Security Analysts Society and the CFA Institute.

Ciara Crossan
Founder & CEO, WeddingDates
Cork, Ireland

Ciara founded WeddingDates in 2008, with a family background in hospitality and a degree in business information systems from University College Cork. WeddingDates’ mission is to make planning and booking a wedding easier online. The goal is to connect newly engaged couples with venues and suppliers who are available on their preferred wedding date.

Ciara says it is the “marriage” of the two that led to the concept of WeddingDates (pardon the pun!). She is passionate about improving user experience both online and offline, and Ciara sees the hospitality industry as one of the most interesting sectors to operate in. The fundamentals of hospitality haven’t changed in decades, yet the pace of technology development has brought vast changes, both positive and negative.

Ciara believes in the power of technology to improve the customer experience, while she also recognizes the fundamentals of hospitality — it is a people-powered industry. As a mother to five-year-old twin boys, Ciara is an advocate for flexible working and encourages her own staff to fit work around family or other external commitments.

WeddingDates was the winner of the Irish Social Media Awards in 2011 and is a graduate of Enterprise Ireland's High Potential Start-Up program. Ciara is a regular speaker at UK national conferences and events and was shortlisted as “Outstanding Entrepreneur” in UK Women 1st SHINE Awards in 2013.

Tehya Kopp
Social Impact Strategist
Santa Monica, California, USA

Tehya Kopp is an award-winning leader of global content strategy, marketing and operational excellence with 25 years in the entertainment industry and a passion for using storytelling to drive social impact. 
Determined to make an impact on a large scale, Tehya began her career as an English teacher for Czech journalists in Prague during the “Velvet Revolution” in 1990. She then helped lead the new marketing department of the American Film Institute, where she engaged with the entire film community to identify and celebrate the top 100 movies of the first 100 years of film, raising consumer awareness, creating AFI into a consumer brand and generating $2.3 million in renewable operating contribution for the non-profit.
Tehya’s 17-year tenure at Warner Bros. saw her lead cross-functional teams that delivered global home entertainment marketing campaigns for top-tier TV series and films and manage strategic partnerships such as the BBC, PBS, National Geographic, LEGO and Lucasfilm, as well as sister divisions. During her time leading the documentary division, it was the most profitable in the industry, reaching over $100 million in annual consumer sales.
Tehya is now chief engagement strategist of the newly created political action committee Fund Her, where she leads consumer messaging and strategy, including acting as executive producer of the organization’s introductory video and securing Jamie Lee Curtis as spokesperson. 

Tehya is a graduate of Harvard Business School's Program for Leadership Development.

Anne Butterly
CEO and Founder of Easydry
Louth, Ireland

Anne’s mission is to create a range of innovative, eco-friendly textiles to revolutionize industries that depend upon cotton and plastic. She created the world’s first 100 percent biodegradable, disposable towel through Easydry, the company she founded almost 15 years ago. Since then, it has expanded its product line and spread to more than 20 countries, including New Zealand, the U.S., Finland, Iceland, Malta, Bahrain, Austria and South Africa. Easydry saves millions of gallons of water globally each year.

Anne won 14 major awards for Easydry, including 2015 and 2011 Green Entrepreneur of the Year at the Green Awards, 2013 Woman in Business, 2013 LCEB 20 Years Anniversary Platinum Award, 2009 Innovation of the Year, 2009 HJ British Hairdressing Business Award, 2011 Businesswoman of the Year and the 2011 Louth County Enterprise Board Award.

Anne specialized in accounting for her BComm and then moved into management for her MBS. After college, she spent eight years working in marketing roles at Aon, Graphite HRM and Sage.

Morra Aarons-Mele
Founder of Women Online/The Mission List
Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Morra is the founder of the award-winning social impact agency Women Online and The Mission List, a social change influencer database. Morra has launched online campaigns for President Obama, Malala Yousafzai, Planned Parenthood, the United Nations Foundation, Hillary Clinton for President and many other leading figures and organizations.

Morra is the author of Hiding in the Bathroom: A Roadmap to Getting Out There (When You'd Rather Stay Home) published by HarperCollins. She is also the host of the popular podcast Hiding in the Bathroom.

Morra’s internet experience spans politics and the private sector. During the 2004 presidential election, Morra was the director of internet marketing for the Democratic National Committee. After the 2004 election, she founded Edelman’s digital public affairs team where she worked with Fortune 50 clients. Morra has held various roles at leading online companies in New York and London. She was founding political director for, and has written for Harvard Business Review, FastCompany, O the Oprah Magazine, Forbes, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and The Guardian.
Morra has degrees from the Harvard Kennedy School and Brown University.

Ntombenhle Khathwane
CEO and Founder, AfroBotanics Pty Ltd
Johannesburg, South Africa

After leaving civil service, Ntombenhle founded AfroBotanics in 2011. AfroBotanics manufactures natural hair and body care products using African botanical ingredients. At the heart of the AfroBotanics brand is promoting a positive image of Africa and elevating its positive history. AfroBotanics has a range of over 37 products, available in over 600 stores in seven African countries.
Ntombenhle has received recognition for her entrepreneurial work, ranging from Destiny Magazine Top 40 Under 40 Women in 2017, 30 Young Entrepreneurs to Watch in 2016 by Forbes Africa, Mail & Guardian Top 200 Young People 2016 and 100 Most Influential People of African Descent (MIPAD) 2017. She was selected as part of the U.S. government–funded African Women Entrepreneurship Program (AWEP) to the USA in 2016.
Ntombenhle launched “Girl Boss South Africa — My World, My Rules,” to empower girls aged 16 to 25, and a newly launched “My Beautiful Life,” a program aimed at assisting older women to live purposeful lives. Ntombenhle is also in the process of publishing a book featuring seven African women in manufacturing, as a way to inspire other women to explore the industry.
Ntombenhle has bachelor of arts degree in politics and philosophy from the University of KwaZulu Natal in South Africa.

Norah Casey
Broadcaster and Publishing Entrepreneur
Dublin, Ireland

Broadcaster and publishing entrepreneur Norah Casey, formerly a dragon in the popular television series Dragons’ Den, is a well-known radio and television personality. The second edition of her book Spark! was published in 2017, and she is currently writing a second. Her TEDx talks The Cure for Grief  and The Courage to Leave have been watched by thousands, and her podcast 10 Steps to Startup Success is widely listened to by budding entrepreneurs.
Norah owns multiple publishing and production companies and has extensive experience in radio and television including presenting her own weekly show, MindFeed, on Newstalk and her social entrepreneurship television series, Norah’s Traveller Academy. She has served as the anchor of several successful talk shows and is currently appearing weekly as a celebrity contestant in television’s Dancing with the Stars.
Norah is currently Ireland’s 2018 Philanthropist of the Year. In May 2018 she received the Woman of the Decade Award at the Women’s Economic Forum in Delhi. She has been Publisher of the Year five times. She also serves on the European Board of Vital Voices, established in 1997 by the then First Lady of the United States Hillary Rodham Clinton and U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

Shilpi Singh
Co-founder, Unhotel
Gurgaon, Haryana, India

Unhotel is an experiential travel company focusing on Indian immersion. A leadership coach and HR professional, Shilpi stepped into the travel industry in 2009 with a humble homestay, Cinnamon Stays. In a short span, Unhotel has become a collective of more than 50 unique and diverse experiences in India, each one focusing on core values of responsible and sustainable tourism.
A strong champion of diversity, Shilpi focuses on inclusive travel and leadership. Besides being co-founder of Unhotel, Shilpi is also managing partner and head of the Leadership & Coaching practice for BD Foundation, a global D&I consultancy. One of her prime travel initiatives is to make travel safe and accessible for women. She believes in active citizenship — Shilpi is an avid blogger and has a strong social media presence. Travel and movies are her prime interest.

Susan Ann Davis
Chairman, Susan Davis International
Washington, D.C., USA

Susan Ann Davis is chairman of Susan Davis International, a global public affairs and strategic communications agency. Internationally known for her expertise in reputation management, market entry and expansion, crisis and cyber risk communications and public affairs, Susan advises senior government, industry and NGO executives worldwide. She is an expert on the global smart-aging industry and serves as the vice chair of Ireland Smart Ageing Exchange (ISAX), creating a unique countrywide smart-aging ecosystem and establishing Ireland as a global hub for businesses involved in smart-aging technology, products and services.
A lifelong advocate for social entrepreneurship, democracy building and leadership development for women, Susan serves on the Vital Voices board of directors and was its chair from 2009 to 2016. She was the first international president of the International Women’s Forum, now representing over 7,000 women leaders and is presently the board chair for Razia’s Ray of Hope Foundation. The foundation supports and oversees the Zabuli Education Center and Razia’s Ray of Hope Institute, now educating over 600 girls in rural Afghanistan.
Susan received the Global Empowerment Humanitarian Award in the UK and has been recognized for her leadership in Ireland and Northern Ireland by Irish America magazine, “Top 100 Irish Americans and 75 Most Influential Irish American Women,” and by the Flax Trust for “Service to Northern Ireland.” Most recently, Susan has been the strategic U.S. advisor to the Irish Catholic Bishops’ Conference for the Vatican World Meeting of Families and the papal visit to Ireland.

Orit Cohen
Entrepreneur; Owner and CEO, Mootag
Haifa, Israel

Orit Cohen is an entrepreneur as well as owner and CEO of Mootag, a branding, marketing and advertising social business in Haifa, Israel.

After 12 years in operation, she shifted the business to engage with the community in a meaningful way — through training in design and technology and employment for teenagers and young adults at risk.

This earned Orit recognition and speaking opportunities in Israel; entrepreneurs and organizations from around the world arrived at Mootag to learn about her approach. Now she is focusing on creating a new concept that will connect corporations to social action in order to make a significant impact inside and outside Israel. 

Orit is active in local politics and peace initiatives for women. She currently manages the regional headquarters of a female Israeli parliament member who is establishing an independent party. She is also a leader in promoting women in politics and key positions at the local level.

Pacita “Chit” Juan
Founder of ECHOStore
Manila, Philippines

Pacita “Chit” Juan is a social entrepreneur, green advocate, coffee crusader and advocate for women’s empowerment through business. She has been an entrepreneur most of her life, founding start-ups such as a coffee shop chain, a Filipino casual food chain, a farm-to-table restaurant and a natural and organic store called ECHOstore, which now has nine branches in its tenth year.

She is the Southeast Asia councilor of Slow Food International and regional coordinator of International Women’s Coffee Alliance. She is the president and co-chair of the Philippine Coffee Board Inc.

Chit has received many awards, including Asia Pacific CSR Council’s CEO of the Year in 2018, Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year in 2011 for social enterprise, Social Entrepreneur of the Year by GO Negosyo, and the Bossing award by PLDT and Smart.

With her experience and expertise, Chit often speaks at international fora such as the Global Summit of Women, APEC meetings and in many conferences on various topics such as sustainability, women’s empowerment and coffee. She is also a prolific writer, having shared her expertise in several books, as well as in regular columns for various online and print publications in the Philippines.

Jane Mutulili
Owner, La Femme Engineering Services Ltd
Nairobi, Kenya

Jane has over 24 years of experience working in the field of construction, project management, water and sanitation, and community infrastructure. She is the owner of La Femme Engineering Services Ltd., which is currently managing projects in Kenya and Somalia for various clients, including United Nations Office in Nairobi, UNICEF, IOM and the Somalia Stability Fund.
As an engineering leader, she is registered and qualified consulting engineer with the Engineer’s Board of Kenya and a Fellow of the Institute of Engineers of Kenya, where she also served as the first vice president of the institution. She is a qualified water engineer practicing in Kenya and has comprehensive experience in the practice of Engineering Consultancy. She is therefore able to integrate international design procedures with the needs of the local people, and to offer systems that are compatible with the social economic environment of the people in the project area.
Jane has vast experience in program planning and management, monitoring and evaluation, and has an in-depth understanding of United Nations systems, including program cycle and reporting standards. She is energetic, motivated and a team player.
She is fluent in English and Kiswahili, has skills in basic French and speaks three other local dialects.

Míne Öztürk
Angel Investor and Co Founder, Tıkabasa
Istanbul, Turkey

Mine began her career in 1990 at Ethicon Endo-Surgery, a Johnson & Johnson company, as a sales representative, working her way up to sales manager and then franchise director.

In 1999, Mine moved to Boston Scientific International as country director for Turkey and Central Asia. She established the direct subsidiary for the company operations in Turkey, then moved to Boston, Massachusetts as global marketing director for Cardiology Products Group.

Promoted to general manager and vice president for operations in Israel, Turkey, South Africa, India and Greece, Mine gained experience in people and business management working on three different continents with yearly revenue of more than $250 million.

In 2008 Mine returned to Turkey and became general manager at General Electric Healthcare for Turkey and Central Asia operations, managing more than 200 people and 25 staff members in eight countries, including Iran and former Russia states. She also led the Woman Leadership Council within GE in Turkey and participated in Global Woman Leadership Conferences in the U.S. and Germany, representing Turkey.

Mine joined Baxter International as general manager for Turkey in 2014. She is a member of its EMEA Diversity & Inclusivity Council. She has been a board member of American Business Forum in Turkey and leads the Healthcare and Life Sciences Committee as well as the Woman Leadership Council.

Mine studied public relations and journalism at Istanbul University. She holds an MBA from Marmara University in Istanbul.

Farana Boodhram
Founder and CEO, Avita Mining and MiDesk Global; Managing Director, Forever Farana Coveralls
Johannesburg Area, South Africa

Farana is the founder and CEO of Avita Mining and MiDesk Global, as well as the managing director of Forever Farana Coveralls, with 18 years of executive leadership experience in the logistics and mining industry.

She is responsible for the design and patenting of a world-first protective garment that women can wear underground, and is also the owner of the patent and design of MiDesk— a patent of a revolutionary designed wheelie school bag that converts into a desk and chair — for millions of kids without desks at schools in rural areas.

Farana is passionate about expanding opportunities for women in business. Her mission is to eradicate poverty by creating a fair playing field for women and children globally, ensuring that they have the correct apparatus to become informed leaders of tomorrow.

She has been the recipient of numerous professional and entrepreneurship awards, including the GROW Fellowship through Vital Voices Global Partnership, the World Women Super Achiever Award 2017 and Standard Bank Women’s High Growth Accelerator 2017.

Farana graduated from the University of Cape Town Graduate School of Business with an MBA in executive management, is the vice chairperson of the Graduate School of Business Alumni Board, as well as a board member of the Graduate School of Business Advisory.

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