Bringing women small business owners from around the world to Paris for week-long mentorship program

A partnership between Bank of America and Vital Voices, the Global Ambassadors Program (GAP) focuses on the power of mentoring to help women entrepreneurs advance.  The program pairs women leaders of small businesses and social enterprises with senior women executives from a range of sectors who can share their experience and networks with mentees.  The week-long mentorship program is taking place in Paris, France from November 10-15, 2019, offering both one-on-one and group mentoring sessions focused on building business acumen.  The Paris program underlines the bank’s investments in France which include a focus on women’s economic empowerment.  Connecting women entrepreneurs to tools and resources that give them the power to succeed is one way Bank of America helps advance economic and social progress.

For more information, visit our Global Ambassadors Program page.

Follow @BofA_News and @VitalVoices for updates via #GlobalAmbassadors.

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

Paris Global Ambassadors

Norah Casey
Broadcaster, Publishing Entrepreneur and Human Rights Campaigner
Dublin, Ireland

Broadcaster, publishing entrepreneur and human rights campaigner 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 include 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.

Aida Axelsson-Bakri
Founder and Managing Director, ADS Insight
Brussels, Belgium

Aida is founder and managing director of ADS Insight, a consultancy that helps to create an enabling environment through sound legislative policy so that businesses can grow and thrive while maintaining high environmental and social standards.

With an educational background in environmental science, Aida combines scientific proficiency with over 20 years’ experience in the European Union legislative domain. Driven by the UN Sustainable Development Goals, Aida and her team of 15 staff help clients from around the world navigate the EU’s politics, policies and funding mechanisms, specifically in sustainable transport, climate resilience, agri-food systems, and circular economy.

Aida is a passionate social entrepreneur and advocate for women’s financial inclusion, access to finance, and technology. In the context of agricultural resilience in the face of the climate crisis, Aida’s activities on women’s economic empowerment have concentrated on women agri-entrepreneurs in sub-Saharan Africa and the small island developing states. Her recent TEDxULB talk specifically aims to inspire women and youth to embrace social entrepreneurship.

Aida is a highly motivating and plurilingual global citizen. She is Ethiopian and Swiss, and speaks English, French, (Swiss) German, and a bit of Swedish and Amharic.

Val Quinn
Global Consumer Director, The Coca-Cola Company
Dublin, Ireland

Val is global customer director at Coca-Cola Ireland, where she has worked since 2004, based out of Dublin. She began as retail marketing director and was promoted to managing director in 2007. She managed and grew the Coca-Cola Irish’s business for nearly four years before taking on the challenge of her current role in 2011. Val managed the firm’s global foodservice partnership for three years with Compass PLC, ensuring year on year growth delivery. Her remit then changed to manage the petrol convenience channel internationally.

Since Oct 2014, she has partnered with customers such as Shell International. With Shell, Val continues to drive the non-alcoholic beverages category, and works on a broad range of holistic initiatives such as hydration, digital campaigns and helping to shape the lifestyle choices global strategy with Shell. Under her management, the Coca-Cola Company developed a strong partnership with Shell. The company has been awarded numerous awards over the years, and was recently recognized as Shell Supplier of the Year.

Val’s background, after completing her BComm and MBS first class honors degree in 1990, was in sales with RHM and CPC/Unilever in the UK. She returned to Ireland in 1994 and worked for R&A Bailey (now part of Diageo) for three years as an international marketing projects manager. She joined Mars/Masterfoods Ireland in 1997 and had various marketing roles there for seven years.

Andrea Bury
Founder and CEO, ABURY Collection
Berlin, Germany

Andrea is the founder and CEO of ABURY Collection, a fair-trade lifestyle brand based in Berlin, Germany.

After studies in economics and cultural management, Andrea started her career in marketing, working in agencies in Frankfurt, London and Monaco. She moved to Munich in 2001 and founded the marketing agency, Calliope, inspiring brand communication. Since then, she has developed marketing strategies for companies such as Deutsche Bank AG, O2 Germany, DEDON, Volkswagen, and others.

In 2007 she and her then husband moved part-time to Marrakech and opened a city palace they had previously restored with artisans, the AnaYela, a "Place of Inspiration.” Andrea is still running it as a design hotel today and it has won four World Hotel Awards.

Living in Marrakesh inspired Andrea to start ABURY with the mission to preserve traditional crafts and support local artisans to earn a fair living. Part of the profits are reinvested in education projects in the communities they work with through the ABURY Foundation. Her concept for a global matching and collaboration platform for designers and artisans reached the European finals of the MIT Inclusive Innovation Challenge in 2018.

In 2011 Andrea started TEDxMarrakesh. In 2013 she was awarded the Victress Award for Social Entrepreneurship, and since 2015, she has been a part of the BMW Foundation Global Leaders network.

Andrea Sullivan
International Executive, Global Environmental, Social & Governance
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
London, United Kingdom

As international executive for the Global Environment, Social & Governance (ESG) group, Andrea is responsible for the bank’s ESG efforts in markets outside the USA. In this role, she leads on the firm’s sustainable business practices, and focuses on the strategic alignment and integration of ESG within the bank’s responsible growth objectives. She works closely with senior leaders across the company to steward the bank’s ESG business development with clients, manage the bank’s social investments, and drive operational initiatives, employee programmes, and policy development.

Andrea joined the bank from Lehman Brothers, where she was a managing director and the Chief Executive of the Lehman Brothers Foundation Europe. She has held various leadership roles focusing on business strategy, marketing and communications, including working with British Sky Broadcasting, the Lego Company and Lifetime Television.

Andrea holds a BA degree in the Political Implications of Art from Lafayette College in Pennsylvania and a Juris Doctorate from NYU School of Law. She is an advisor to the bank’s regional Women’s Leadership Council and is passionate about the arts and education. Andrea is actively engaged on various boards and investment committees including Create London, Mousetrap Theatre Projects, Bridge’s Social Entrepreneurs Fund and the Arts Impact Fund.

Erëza Vela
Founder, RedMill
Pristina, Kosovo

Erëza is founder of RedMill, a high-end agency offering services in PR, communications, CSR consultancy, and event management. With expertise working with USAID, EU, and government projects, Erëza started the company at a time when there were few women business owners in Kosovo.

In 2015, Erëza partnered with an expert in marketing, production and social media management to become a fully integrated marketing agency. RedMill is now one of the biggest creative companies in Kosovo with 20 employees, mostly women.

Erëza is well known in Kosovo as an entrepreneur, expert in communications and public relations, philanthropist and passionate advocate for women’s economic empowerment. In 2014, she served as executive producer and anchor of “Ekonomia me Erëzën” a prime-time television program about the economy. It soon became a leading program, hosting ministers, prime ministers, and leaders of international organizations and business.

In 2017, Erëza was awarded the Chevening Scholarship, fully funded by the UK government, and moved to London for postgraduate studies in political communications. She received a master of arts with merit degree in 2018.

Erëza is currently back at RedMill and working on the new season of “Ekonomia me Erëzën,” which will air January 2020.

Nina Easton
Co-Founder, SellersEaston Media
Washington, D.C., United States

Nina is the co-founder of SellersEaston Media, telling the stories of leadership and impact through film, memoirs, and live events. Her many projects include an acclaimed documentary on Nobel-winning former Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos and a film on American civil rights leaders.

A Vital Voices board member, Nina is also the chair of Fortune Most Powerful Women International and co-chair of the Fortune Global Forum, gathering together top leaders from around the world. At the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), the prominent Washington D.C. foreign affairs think tank, she hosts Smart Women, Smart Power, which brings global leaders and diplomats to the stage for insightful interviews. In 2012 she served as a Kennedy School Fellow.

Nina is a renowned author, magazine writer, and TV commentator. Prior to becoming an entrepreneur, she was Fortune magazine’s Washington columnist and senior editor. For 15 years, she was a regular political analyst on high-profile TV shows such as Fox News Sunday and Meet the Press. She spent a decade as an award-winning senior writer at the Los Angeles Times. An accomplished author, her critically-acclaimed political history, Gang of Five: Leaders at the Center of the Conservative Ascendancy, ranks on the Vox list of “books to read to understand the world.”

A mother of three, Nina lives in Washington, DC. She grew up in California and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from UC Berkeley.

Jacqueline NGO MPII
Founder and CEO, Little Africa Enterprise
Paris, France

Jacqueline NGO MPII is a young entrepreneur with a vision to transform her passion for art, tourism, and languages into a multi-dimensional project with character. Little Africa is a sustainable and inclusive enterprise whose mission is to promote the art and culture of Africa and its diaspora. The Little Africa venture is the culmination of her seven-year career in the tourism industry.

In 2014, Jacqueline first launched the website for Little Africa, establishing it as a platform dedicated to the African diaspora in Paris. The following year, she expanded the program to include tours in neighborhoods such as Saint-Germain-des-Pres and Goutte d’Or, providing opportunities for visitors to explore from a new and unique perspective.

Jacqueline is constantly redefining and expanding her activities. She plays many different roles: cultural ambassador, curator, author, publisher, and philanthropist. Her efforts have been recognized and featured in publications all around the world, most recently in Jeune Afrique and Paris Vogue’s piece, “How to travel to Africa without leaving Paris?” Jacqueline has also been featured in The Huffington Post as one of three travel entrepreneurs to follow.

Saba Nazar
Managing Director, Investment Banking Division
Co-Head of Global Financial Sponsors
Bank of America Merrill Lynch
London, United Kingdom

Saba is co-head of Global Financial Sponsors at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Saba is responsible for developing and strengthening the Bank’s global relationships with key private equity firms, working closely with the firm’s global leadership team to drive the growth of the global leveraged buyout advisory and financing business. An experienced M&A banker, Saba has been covering private equity firms for the last 20 years. During her career, she has been responsible for global coverage of many of the top funds and has relationships at the managing partner level across this client base.

Saba has been consistently ranked in the Financial News Top 100 Women in European Banking and Finance.

Saba has also dedicated time and resources to supporting cultural, charitable and diversity initiatives. Throughout her career she has played an active role promoting diversity and inclusion. At the Bank, she has held many Leader Connect events, a series of networking meetings which brings together female executives across the firm. Saba is a member of the Bank’s UK Foundation Advisory Council, which reviews EMEA charitable donations on behalf of the firm with a focus on youth and employment issues, supporting local community and women’s empowerment initiatives. She is also on the Board of Trustees of The London Design Museum.

Saba has a B.A. from Harvard University, and an M.Phil. in Economics from Queens’ College Cambridge.

Jean Hwang Carrant
Founder, JHC Cookies
Paris, France

Jean Hwang Carrant is a Taiwanese-American creator of cookies in Paris, France, and the author of “Cookie Love,” recently published in French and English. She founded the company JHC Cookies and owns a cookie boutique in the heart of Paris – the Sentier, a buzzing, trendy neighborhood in the second arrondissement.

Jean’s cookies are a creative tri-culturalism mixture of American classic, French touch, and Asian influence, representing her background. Her cookies have been recognized by many magazines and newspapers, the highest accolade coming from world-renowned pastry master Pierre Hermé, who praised her cookies as “perfect” and the “best cookies” he had ever eaten.

Jean continues to bake fresh, organic cookies each morning with great love and passion. She also works with other businesses and supplies restaurants and offices around Paris. Her goal is to expand the business to other cities around the world.

Idil Türkmenoğlu
Organisation & Culture & Talent Consultant, Lecturer, Author
Istanbul, Turkey

İdil Türkmenoğlu has been working for 25 years in human resources, organization development and sustainability for two major conglomerates, Dogus and Boyner Groups. Her last position before she turned to freelancing in 2018 was ex-co member and vice president for Boyner Group, responsible for human resources, communications and sustainability.

İdil holds a management degree from Bogazici University in Istanbul, Turkey, and has participated in the “Positive Organizational Scholarship” studies at the University of Michigan. She completed graduate studies in psychology at Istanbul Commerce University. Following Istanbul, Yeditepe and Koç Universities, Idil is now teaching at Bogazici University.

A speaker and lecturer, İdil is also an author and consultant on culture, talent and leadership. Her first book, “Office Stories” published in 2005, was followed by a second, “Positive Management,” in 2011. In partnership with Aysun Sayin, she was one of the main editors of the Equality at Work Handbook. This year, she published “Internal Communication” and “Networking,” co-authored by Taysever.

İdil’s memberships include Arya Women Investment Platform, 30% Club, Women in Boardroom, Society of Human Resources Management, International Positive Psychology Association, BÜMED, KALİD, Common Purpose, People Management Association of Turkey and the Corporate Volunteers Association.

Karine Jackson
Owner, Karine Jackson Hair and Beauty Salon
London, United Kingdom

Karine has run her eponymous salon in Covent Garden for 16 years alongside an active industry presence. In 2017, she was elected as the President of the Fellowship for British Hairdressing, where she previously served as Chancellor.

Passionate about apprenticeships, recruiting young people to the industry as well as organic hairdressing, Karine has appeared on TV shows such as Woman’s Hour and The One Show, and has a regular presence in the press. Her salon was the first in London to be awarded as Certified Sustainable, and now is working towards becoming a plastic-free business.

Karine has won numerous awards, including London Hairdresser of the Year in 2007, Fellowship Consumer Image of the Year in 2011, Most Wanted Hair Trend in 2015, Colour Expert and Hair Heroine in the Hair Magazine Awards 2018. She has been shortlisted for Most Wanted Colour Expert three times, Men’s Hairdresser of the year in 2009, the Salon Business awards in the Colour Expert and Green Salon categories, and the prestigious British Hairdressing Awards in the London Hairdresser of the Year category. Two of her products were in the final of the Hair awards Super 60.

Yvonne Ike
Managing Director, Head of Sub-Saharan Africa (Ex-RSA), Bank of America Merrill Lynch
London, United Kingdom

Yvonne Ike is a managing director and head of sub-Saharan Africa (Ex-RSA) at Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Since joining in September 2014, Yvonne has established the Bank as a leader in providing international financial services in the sub-Saharan Africa region.

Yvonne is an executive sponsor of BofAML Inter-Generational (iGEN) Employee Network which provides a platform for young talent to network, improve their broader understanding of the banking sector and navigate their career opportunities within the bank. She is also a sponsor of the Africa Recruitment Programme.

Yvonne has more than 25 years of experience in the financial services sector, including capital markets and fixed income, derivatives and equities products. Over the course of her career, Yvonne has led senior teams in New York, Geneva, Hong Kong, Nigeria and South Africa.

Prior to joining Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Yvonne was chief executive officer of West Africa at Renaissance Capital, where she was responsible for the firm’s West Africa franchise covering Investment Banking and Securities Trading. Prior to that, Yvonne worked in Investment Banking and Asset Management at JP Morgan, and was a partner at AfriCapital Management Limited. Yvonne started her career as an auditor with Ernst and Young International.

Yvonne is a trustee of The Bridge Leadership Academy, Christopher Kolade Foundation and The Dangote Foundation. She is passionate about actively contributing to Africa’s development and is involved in several initiatives, including African Gifted Foundation and Women for Women International. In 2015, Yvonne served as a Global Ambassador with the Global Ambassadors Program.

Yvonne has received many international awards, including recognition by the Queen of England as one of the top 200 businesswomen in the UK to make a significant impact in society during 2007.

Katharina Paoli
Founder & CEO, Nudgd
Gothenburg, Sweden

Katharina is a Swedish entrepreneur, public speaker, communications specialist, and a true change-maker with a passion for sustainable business and sustainable lifestyle. She is the founder and CEO of Nudgd and the initiator of Nudging Sweden. Her company works with corporations, municipalities, and governmental agencies to get action and measurable results on the UN Sustainable Development Goals in areas of energy efficiency, food choices, waste management, water, sanitation, equality, littering and health.

Through ‘nudging,’ a method that combines behavioral science, psychology and design, Katharina and her team provide hands on evidence-based solutions that make sustainable choices easy, and deliver measurable results for a resource-efficient sustainable future.

Katharina has a background in communications strategy with a focus on CSR and sustainability, and is one of Europe’s most well-known nudging experts. She is also a member of the Climate Reality Leadership Corps, a global network of leaders committed to addressing the climate crisis established by Al Gore, where she was trained in public speaking and climate leadership.

Katharina also serves as a mentor for Singularity University’s Global Startup Program and as an advisor for several Clean Tech startups including Ljusgårda Vertical Farming and VRexicon-the Global Virtual Reality SDG Education Library.

Julie Kinch
Former Senior Vice President, Chief Legal Officer, Heineken USA Inc.
Westchester County, NY, United States

Julie is the former senior vice president and chief legal officer for Heineken USA Inc. She was their first female SVP and management team member, and part of the strategic and operational management of the company, which has grown to over $1.5B in revenue. Julie also oversaw the legal, regulatory and compliance functions for the company. She has represented companies in various industry trade organizations and has helped shape category narratives within the legal and alcohol beverage space.

Julie founded the Heineken Women’s Leadership Forum to drive the inclusion and advancement of women in the workplace. Her passion has had a lasting impact: as of 2019, 50 percent of Heineken USA’s employees are women and 48 percent of its senior leaders are women.

Prior to joining Heineken USA, Julie was vice president, general counsel for Remy Amerique, Inc. and before that, she was with the law firm White & Case. She is a former member of the board of directors for LIFT, a charity that provides access to justice for children and families in New York City, and she was on the initial advisory council for the Women’s Leadership Institute at Manhattanville College in Purchase, New York. Currently, Julia is a member of the Gender Diversity & Inclusion Committee of Women of the Vine & Spirits.

Julie was recognized as one of Westchester County’s “Women in Business” and was an “Equal Access to Justice” honoree in 2019. She is a graduate of Georgetown University and Boston College Law School.

Mairead Mackle
Founder & CEO, Homecare and Healthcare Services Ireland LTD
Dublin, Ireland

Mairead Mackle is a values-based, award winning entrepreneur who owns and operates a diverse suite of progressive businesses across several industries including care, support, housing solutions, renewables, and construction. As founder and CEO of HCIL Ireland, she has a dynamic team of passionate professionals delivering care at home to clients across the country.

With a proven track record and a robust reputation for being an employer of choice, Mairead’s vision for HCIL Ireland is to use its expertise and experience to grow and diversify the offering and impact by creating holistic solutions that address prevalent social issues including the homelessness epidemic in Ireland and healthy aging. Dedicated to generating solutions for homelessness in Ireland, she recently founded FABRACO, a design-led construction company that creates Portable Space Solutions (PSS) for comfortable temporary and permanent accommodation.

A loving mother to seven children, Mairead is a strong supporter of equality, diversity, women in business and CSR, and is on the board of Women in Business Northern Ireland (WIBNI) and Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). In 2010, Mairead founded iCare Charity, which is designed to improve the lives of others through simple acts of kindness called “iCare Wishes.” With passion, she also launched EVOLVE Women’s Network in 2018 to promote and encourage strong female leadership across society. Her desire is to inspire and support women to achieve greater success in life on a personal or professional level.

Jeannie Diefenderfer
Founder & CEO, courageNpurpose, LLC
Chester, NJ, United States

Jeannie is currently an independent director on the board of Windstream Holdings (NASDAQ: WIN), chair of the Accenture Network Advisory Council, an advisor to Sedona Systems, and vice chair and a trustee of Tufts University. She previously served on the boards of MRV Communications, Westell Technologies, Citizens Funds, and the Ms. Foundation for Women.

During her 28-year career at Verizon Communications, she held a range of roles, including SVP of Global Engineering & Panning, chief procurement officer, and SVP of Customer Care. She managed organizations with up to 10,000 staff, operating budgets up to $12 billion and capital programs over $10 billion. She ran and expanded the world’s largest voice and data network to connect six continents and shifted the complexities of customer care into a strategic growth driver.

Along the way, Jeannie celebrated the human side of business. She initiated a consortium of Fortune 100 companies to support procurement from women and minority suppliers and served on Employee Resource Groups including the Minority Multicultural Association of NYNEX, Women’s Association of Verizon Employees, and the Asian Focus Group.

As the founder and CEO of courageNpurpose, LLC, Jeannie advises boards and CEOs to help drive operational scalability and business efficacy.

Her work won her recognition from business and industry groups, including Outstanding 50 Asian Americans in Business and Asian Women in Business Corporate Leadership Award. She was listed in Crain’s New York Business “40 under 40” publication and was a member of the 1999 class of the David Rockefeller Fellows Program.

Jeannie holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Tufts University and an MBA from Babson College. A native of South Korea, she immigrated to the U.S. at age 13.

Silvia de Vaan
Founder and CEO, SweepSmart
Amsterdam, the Netherlands

Silvia is the founder and CEO of SweepSmart, a social enterprise on a mission to solve the waste problem in emerging and developing companies through European waste management reinvented for the local context. SweepSmart has set up four Smart Waste Centers in India and Indonesia, in which former waste pickers collect and sort waste for recycling, supported with Europe-meets-local equipment, IT, and processes. Currently SweepSmart is building 12 other Smart Waste Centers in India, and is looking at expansion in Indonesia and to other countries.

After studying systems engineering at Delft University of Technology, Silvia worked for five years as a strategy consultant at The Boston Consulting Group in different industries and countries. She has worked as a freelance business developer for several social enterprises in the Netherlands and Tanzania, and currently trains other social entrepreneurs and young professionals. With SweepSmart, Silvia won the Partnership Verkiezing (2014), Cordaid Challenge (2016) and PwC’s Social Impact Lab (2017).

Silvia is passionate about impact entrepreneurship, circular economy, and renewable energy, especially for developing countries. She loves to co-create impactful initiatives, develop win-win partnerships, co-design the right solution, and build and coach them until they can run independently. She has lived and worked in the Netherlands, India, Tanzania and Madagascar.

Elizabeth Buchanan
Non-Executive Director, S4Capital
Brooklyn, New York, United States

Elizabeth Buchanan is a revered leader in technology, innovation and marketing. A non-executive board member of the publicly listed S4Capital (LON: SFOR), Elizabeth is excited to join Sir Martin Sorrell in building a new age marketing services organization. As a non-executive board member of Vital Voices Global Partnership, Elizabeth enjoys leveraging her skills to support female entrepreneurs across the globe.

Elizabeth has built her career through exploration and transformation, having held global executive roles at companies such as Omnicom through to founding her own award-winning digital marketing services agency in her twenties with a successful exit.

Elizabeth is presently shareholder and president at Rokt, a global ecommerce disrupter with clients including Expedia, Google, Hulu and AMEX. She is also working on a passion project of a new start-up in her spare time.

Deniz Alexandra Duygu
Managing Partner, Arya Women Investment Platform
Istanbul, Turkey

Deniz is the co-founder of Arya Women Investment Platform. Arya was founded in 2014 as a social business with the mission to increase the number of women-led businesses funded while training and inspiring more women to become investors though events, content and mentorship.

Arya has invested over $2.5 million in women led businesses and has an active women’s angel network. In 2018, Arya received the distinction of Social Business of the Year from Sustainability Academy Turkey.

With her finance, fundraising and entrepreneurship background, Deniz focuses on investment readiness services for predominantly women entrepreneurs, investors, and strategic corporate partnerships. She is an angel investor as well as an LP in Rising Tide, part of a global movement to increase women’s participation in angel investing through a global angel community of successful businesswomen across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the USA.

Deniz started her social entrepreneurship journey with ecotourism in support of rural entrepreneurs after three and a half years of working as an auditor for Ernst & Young.
Deniz has a B.S. degree in Economics and Mathematics from Carnegie Mellon University, where she also serves on the Board of the Alumni Association in Turkey. She also earned an M.B.A. from Koc University. She speaks English, German and Turkish fluently, and was a speaker at TEDx in 2019.

Agnieszka Slomka-Golebiowska
Board Member, Advisor, Digital Explorer
Warsaw, Poland

Agnieszka is a shareholder, stakeholder activist and independent non-executive director of many international conglomerates. Her role on boards focuses on governance, strategy development and restructuring, risk management, digital transformation, financial performance, and executive remuneration policy and scheme. She has a strong professional interest in environmental, social and governance policies, as well as in technology and knowledge-based industries, including waste management, fintech, and longevity entrepreneurship.

Agnieszka is a member of the Board of Directors at mBank (Commerzbank Group), Budimex (Ferrovial Group) and is an audit committee member of the World Food Programme. She has previously served as deputy chairperson of the technology company Trans EU; as a board member of Bank BPH; as deputy chairperson of Bumar, the largest defense company in Poland; and as a director in the industrial development agency responsible for defense and aviation. She was also a consultant at Arthur Andersen and Andersen Consulting.

Agnieszka holds an M.S. in finance and banking, an M.B.A., a Ph.D. in economics, and is a professor of corporate finance. She was recognized as Personality of Corporate Governance 2019 in Poland, and is a member of the Polish Boards Expert Forum. She has been awarded the Alexander von Humboldt Fellowship and the Polish-American Fulbright Fellowship. Agnieszka has also been a visiting scholar at various universities all around the world.

Christina Limbird
Co-Founder, Linden Global Learning Support
Berlin, Germany

Dr. Christina Limbird is an educational psychologist and the co-founder of Linden Global Learning Support, an international student support agency based in Berlin, Germany. Working both online and in-person, Linden connects families and schools anywhere in the world with learning specialists and mental health practitioners such as psychologists, special needs experts, learning coaches, speech and occupational therapists, and school consultants. Since 2015, Christina and her co-director have grown from three original support specialists to over 30 international caring professionals reaching hundreds of children and young people.

Christina’s career highlights include building an exemplary comprehensive program of inclusion as the Head of Student Support at an International Baccalaureate school in Germany. She also created The Youtubridge Initiative, a non-profit organization that initiated peace and community building programs for teenagers in post-conflict Croatia. She currently spends most of her free time on her passion project that she and two co-founders launched in 2015, Girls Gearing Up, Europe’s only international girls’ leadership program.

Christina’s extensive research background and belief in informing work in education with empirically sound evidence underpin her work with schools and young people. She has published several articles and book chapters on multilingualism and literacy.


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