More speakers coming soon! On Monday 21 and Tuesday 22 September, we will feature participatory session speakers and contributors.
Kate Bailey is the Policy and Research Director for Eco-Cycle, based in Boulder, Colorado. Eco-Cycle is one of the oldest and largest non-profit recycling organisations and has 44 years of hands-on experience in creating community infrastructure, policies and programmes to reduce waste and increase recycling. Kate is an expert on best practices in creating Zero Waste communities and has worked directly with local government, state legislators, business leaders and brands to advance Zero Waste solutions as a critical step toward addressing our climate crisis. Kate has a B.A. in Environmental Studies and Economics from the University of Colorado-Boulder.
Seán is the Director of Social Procurement with the Ākina Foundation, NZ’s leading impact development organisation. Seán established and leads Fwd, Ākina’s specialist social procurement programme that provides advisory support in social procurement to the private and public sector Buyers, as well as supporting social enterprises to grow to meet increasing market opportunities. Seán is driven by changing procurement for good and realising the potential of organisations to have a positive influence on society and the environment.
Neelam Chhiber is Co-founder, Industree and Mother Earth. For the past three decades, she has been working on the creation of a regenerative economy backed by India's 200 million strong artisanal work force. Her work is now transforming into building a Platform for Inclusive Entrepreneurship with technology enablers so that solutions being built could use the power of networks and scale faster. (PIE.foundation). Neelam is one of the founding members of the Collaborative Initiative, Catalyst 2030, a movement of NPO’s, enterprises, intermediaries and funders to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 (https://catalyst2030.net).
Olivia supports social enterprises to accelerate their business growth and impact. At Social Traders, (Australia’s leading organisation connecting social enterprises with social procurement opportunities and supporting them to successfully deliver on contracts), her work is focused on building capability and developing growth strategies to enable social enterprises to scale through social procurement. In her time at Social Traders, Olivia has worked with over 50 social enterprises at varying stages of development. She also previously ran Crunch, Social Traders’ social enterprise start-up accelerator program.
Born in 1988 in Verona, northern Italy, after a Master's Degree in International Relations at Sciences Po (Paris). Anna takes part in various development projects in India and in Haiti. A strong believer in the creation of new opportunities, in 2013 she decided to start a new project in her territory, founding the social enterprise Quid; nowadays, Quid employs 150 people (mostly women), many coming from disadvantaged or fragile pasts, recovering high-quality surplus fabrics. These are then transformed into limited-edition fashion items for the ethical fashion brand Progetto Quid, which sells them in an e-shop and in 9 stores throughout Italy. Quid social cooperative also has many collaborations with important brands, creating fashion and home accessories distributed with a double label.
Rona is a proud Kaytetye woman and works with high impact organisations to propel social change. Rona is currently the Director of First Nations at YLab, a social enterprise that puts young people with diverse lived experiences at the centre of designing and developing innovative and impactful solutions to complex social issues.
Rona is also the founder of Common Ground, an online space that shares Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, histories and lived experiences. Since Launching in 2018, Common Ground has supported over 300,000 Australians to learn about the cultures and histories of First Nations people. Through her work with First Nations communities across Australia, Rona aims to create future systems that centre First Nations knowledge and cultures.
In 2019, Rona was a recipient of the Diana Award and named one of Australia’s Women’s Weekly ‘Women of the Future’.
Harish is a renewable energy entrepreneur with over 24 years of grassroots experience in understanding, developing and deploying solutions for underserved communities. Harish graduated from the IIT, Kharagpur and earned his PhD from the University of Massachusetts. His experience living in communities in India and Sri Lanka and understanding the correlation between lack of energy and a poverty, inspired him to launch SELCO, which today is an umbrella of organisations, each addressing specific gaps in the energy access ecosystem. SELCO Solar Light Pvt Ltd runs grassroots operations for decentralised energy products like home solar systems. SELCO Foundation is an open-source innovation lab researching and designing social innovations with an incubation program which nurtures clean-energy enterprises. SELCO Fund is an impact fund established in 2016 to deploy patient capital.
Sazzad’s Mission in life is to make the world suck less and using cutting edged technology to accelerate social impact. He is one of the youngest Ashoka fellow, Obama Asia-pacific Leader, Royal Society of Arts Fellow, Kairos Fellow. The three time TEDx speaker is passionate about providing opportunities to marginalised communities such as migrants and refugees with the most potential for transformation. Through nurturing and investing in the community leaders, he hope to be able to drive lasting impact and leave the planet a better place the one he found.
Peter has been CEO of Social Enterprise UK (SEUK) since 2010. SEUK is the national trade body for social enterprise. SEUK works to promote social enterprise as a model for changing both business and society, informing policy, influencing the political agenda, promoting the benefits of social enterprise through the media, campaigns and events, and undertaking research to expand the social enterprise evidence base. Peter has established, developed and supported hundreds of social enterprises. He has advised government taskforces in the UK and overseas and chaired SEWF until 2015. Peter has previously worked for Oxfam, Greenpeace and various disability charities and has experience working in overseas development, community development and public health. Peter was appointed a CBE in 2015.
Amanda Janoo is the Knowledge and Policy Lead for the Wellbeing Economy Alliance (WEALL). Amanda is an economic policy expert with over a decade of experience working with governments and international development institutions around the world. Her work aims to build economies that put people and planet first through goal-oriented and participatory policy design processes. Prior to joining WEALL, Amanda worked for the United Nations and the African Development Bank as a structural transformation expert. As a Fulbright researcher, she explored the relationship between international trade and informal employment generation in India. Amanda graduated from Cambridge University with an MPhil in Development Studies.
Eric was the national spokesperson for the first Zero Waste organisation in the USA (1997) and co-founder of the Zero Waste International Alliance (2002). From 1989-2014, he turned a small non-profit into the largest zero waste social enterprise in the USA (www.Eco-Cycle.org). His working mission is to promote social enterprise as the vehicle for transforming the waste management industry into a “resource management” industry. He recently co-founded Buy Social USA, and is an environmental associate to the Social Enterprise World Forum.
Karen Lynch is an experienced business leader, entrepreneur and mentor. A champion of profit with purpose, the circular economy and collaboration. Following a corporate career in media, automotive and finance, Karen transitioned to the world of Social Enterprise in 2010. Karen was the CEO of Belu Water from then until March 2020, launching a brand that has become one of the UK’s Best-known and most awarded Social Enterprises. Karen is currently Vice Chair of Social Enterprise UK, Non- Executive Director for Homes for Good Glasgow, Non- Executive Director at The Peach Foundation and is an active mentor to entrepreneurs through Expert Impact.
Under Karen’s leadership Belu demonstrated you can put the environment first and be highly profitable and impactful. Belu delivered £1m net profits in 2018, and since 2011 has transformed the lives of over 270,000 people through access to clean water and decent toilets through the company’s partnership with WaterAid. Belu received two Queens Awards for Enterprise, sustainable development in 2017 and Innovation in 2019.
Hélène is part of Pocketknife, a collective of impact-driven professionals who bring their passion for systemic change to initiatives that build bridges to better futures for the communities of Aotearoa NZ.
Helene is a strategist, a coach, and a weaver. She is committed to supporting communities, places and organisations to thrive – meaning that prosperity and wellbeing are intertwined and nourishing each other. Helene works with entrepreneurs, community groups, local anchor organisations, charities, corporates and government bodies. Her facilitation process and methodology incorporate strategic thinking, coaching, co-design and action planning.
Shortly after moving to New Zealand, Hélène left her corporate job to join the Ākina Foundation and begin a journey growing social enterprise. She led the team that hosted the Social Enterprise World Forum in Christchurch in 2017 - a 1600-person event that catalysed the social enterprise movement at a very auspicious time. Hélène currently serves as the Chair of the Board for the Social Enterprise World Forum
Tizzita is the Co-Founder and CEO of Maisha Technologies, a drones for good social enterprise based in Ethiopia. Maisha works to provide custom designed drones for medical delivery and agricultural mapping. Maisha works to provide custom solutions to democratise access using drones and showcase the potential of drones in humanitarian applications. She is also a co-founding member of Social Enterprise Ethiopia, a social enterprise advocacy and support association in Ethiopia. Additionally, she is a youth advisory panellist for British Government programs in Ethiopia and provides insights on how to make programs more youth friendly. She is also a founding member and was the president of the African Aerospace and Remote Data Alliance, which is a Pan-African association advocating for better policy within the aerospace field on the African continent.
Yves is the Founder, President and CEO of Fundación Capital, a non-profit social enterprise working to improve the financial lives of people living in poverty around the world, partnering with governments and the private sector to design and deliver solutions that increase economic prospects for millions. He has received international accolades for his work as a social entrepreneur and was named Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur of the Year, Ashoka Senior Fellow, and is recognised by the Skoll Foundation. He has spent many years working on the ground with low-income families in Africa and Latin America, and applies a wealth of expertise in finance, banking, development economics, anthropology and sociology in his work. He is a trained economist and management engineer from the University of Louvain, and has worked for many years as the Director of a regulated rural bank in Peru.
Marcia Nozick founded EMBERS as a community economic development charity with a mission to create economic and employment opportunities for people living on low incomes in Vancouver, Canada. Marcia’s leadership at EMBERS has helped thousands of people facing work barriers lead productive lives by providing access to self- employment education, job placements, training and support. In 2008, Marcia launched EMBERS Staffing Solutions (ESS), an award- winning temporary staffing agency that donates 100% of its profits back into the community. She is a recent recipient of the Governor General’s Innovation Award as well as the Wendy McDonald Diversity Award in the Entrepreneurial Innovation category. Additionally, Marcia is the author of the influential Canadian book, No Place Like Home: Building Sustainable Communities (1992).
James Okina is a child rights advocate and Educator, he founded Street Priests Incorporated at age 15 which has impacted over 6000 + living on the streets Children. He has been recognized for his work with young people, as a Global Teen Leader, Future African Leader Award Recipient, a 2018 Global changemaker by Global Changemakers Switzerland, named one of 20 young Nigerians to watch in 2018 by Ripples and featured by the BBC, NPR, Forbes but to mention a few. James is a member of the Generation Unlimited Young People’s Action Team (YPAT), a new group of young leaders with strong and expansive grassroot networks and significant experience in policy and practice in the key areas of Generation Unlimited: education, training, skills, entrepreneurship and civic engagement.
Rashvin is the Group CEO of Biji-biji Initiative, which is one of Malaysia's pioneering and award-winning Social Enterprise that champions social innovation. Biji-biji Initiative compromises of subsidiaries across few industries, in Ethical Fashion, Circular Economy Solutions, and their latest venture ME.REKA, which is an innovative and alternative education model, designed to build 21st Century talents. Rashvin plays a regular role in global programs and speaking engagements, he was a panel speaker at the Social Enterprise World Forum (SEWF) 2019 in Addis Ababa and was selected as an Obama Leader in the Asia Pacific inaugural cohort."
Selyna Peiris (Attorney-at-Law) is the Director Business Development at Selyn, Sri Lanka's only Fair-Trade certified Handloom Company and one of the country’s largest social enterprises. She was previously Deputy Director at the Office for National Unity & Reconciliation, Government of Sri Lanka. She started her career at the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation in Vienna and is a also a consultant for Government and international organizations on social business, SME and livelihood development programmes.
Swietenia Puspa Lestari, a 25 year old woman who graduated from environmental engineering in Institute of Technology Bandung, founded Divers Clean Action community in November 2015 and NGO (Foundation) since 2017. Her hobby on scuba diving made her together with 1.500 volunteers across South East Asian countries and of course, Indonesia, to combat marine debris issues with various actions such as research, campaigns and workshops, community development and collaborations with private sectors to governments. Through these works she leads, Tenia is inaugurated as Top 100 Inspiring & Influential Woman BBC 2019, Obama Leaders Asia-Pacific 2019, and 30 under 30 Forbes Social Enterprise Asia 2020
Yash provides strategic vision to the two intertwined verticals of Jaipur Rugs Foundation – skill development and social development – by engaging diverse stakeholders and curating an effective partnerships platform that maximises impact at scale. Jaipur Rugs is known the world over for its inclusive carpet value chain that links grassroots artisans with global markets. Featured in the book “The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid”, the foundation has received widespread accolades. Its unique socio-economic development model is a topic of reference among government, industry, media and academia. Yash has a background in software engineering, entrepreneurship and business strategy. His niche areas include conscious capitalism, founders’ mentality, social entrepreneurship, multi-stakeholder partnerships for development, Sustainable Development Goals and base of the pyramid innovations.
Anna’s experience working on Nauru led her to meet her co-founder Nirary Dacho, a Syrian refugee with a tech background at a Techfugees hackathon in 2015 and start Refugee Talent. They have built it into a social enterprise using an employment platform to match refugees with employment opportunities across Australia and build tech solutions for other organisations. They also partner with Talent Beyond Boundaries to bring refugees still displaced in Jordan and Lebanon and move them to Australia and NZ matched with a job opportunity prior to arriving.
Among music legends, Nile Rodgers is truly exceptional. He amplifies his legacy as a multiple GRAMMY-winning composer, producer, arranger and guitarist by constantly traversing new musical terrain. As the co-founder of CHIC and the Chairman of the Songwriters Hall of Fame, Rodgers pioneered a musical language that generated chart-topping hits like “Le Freak,” and “Good Times”. Nile transcends all styles of music across every generation with a body of work that’s garnered him inductions into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame. Nile’s work in the CHIC Organization and his productions for artists like David Bowie, Diana Ross, and Madonna have sold over 500 million albums and 75 million singles worldwide.
Nile is also the co-founder and Chairman of We Are Family Foundation. An organization that since 2008 has dedicated its efforts to creating programs that promote cultural diversity while nurturing and mentoring the vision, talents and ideas of young people who are positively changing the world.
Erinch is the Chief Executive of the World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO). Established in 1989, WFTO is the global community and verifier of social enterprises that fully practice Fair Trade. Previously, he spent 7 years at Oxfam leading campaign and advocacy teams, and founding Oxfam’s Future of Business Initiative. He has also worked at Procter & Gamble as a market strategy manager, established a furniture business and worked in Indonesia for Australia's aid programme. Erinch also regularly lectures on sustainable business at a range of universities and writes extensively on social enterprise models. Erinch holds an honorary doctorate from Oxford Brookes University and has an academic background in law and finance.
Achala is Managing Director and Co-founder of Lanka Good Market (Guarantee Limited). She has a Bachelor degree in Management from the University of Colombo, a Certificate in Human Resource Management, a Diploma in Rural Development, and an MBA from the University of Cardiff. Achala has been recognized as Women Social entrepreneur of the year 2017 in Sri Lanka and Young Women entrepreneur of the Year 2017.
Amonge SInxoto is a 19-year-old youth activist, social entrepreneur, public speaker and 2019’s Global Teen Leader, Amonge Sinxoto, is an authentically African creative with a burning desire to represent what she feels it means tobe an African youth in the 21st century. As the co-founder of Blackboard Africa, a youth Non-Profit Company, Amonge is at the forefront of driving the narrative of the continent into a new direction.
Audrey Tang is Taiwan’s Digital Minister in charge of Social Innovation. Audrey is known for revitalising the computer languages Perl and Haskell, as well as building the online spreadsheet system EtherCalc in collaboration with Dan Bricklin. In the public sector, Audrey served on Taiwan national development council’s open data committee and K-12 curriculum committee; and led the country’s first e-Rulemaking project. In the private sector, Audrey worked as a consultant with Apple on computational linguistics, with Oxford University Press on crowd lexicography, and with Socialtext on social interaction design. In the social sector, Audrey actively contributes to g0v (“gov zero”), a vibrant community focusing on creating tools for the civil society, with the call to “fork the government.”
Brukty, determined to improve conditions of Ethiopian children and deliver education on a mass scale, established Whiz Kids Workshop in 2005 (WKW) with her husband and began broadcasting Tsehai Loves Learning, Ethiopia’s first award-winning preschool educational program. Whiz Kids Workshop won 2008 Prix Jeunesse International; Next Generation Prize as well as prestigious children educational media awards Japan prize in 2008, 2009 and 2010. It was also selected as a 2011 Tech Awards laureate for responding to the critical need to improve literacy rates and school retention rates in Ethiopia. Brukty was named a Rolex Young Laureate in 2010 for her efforts to reduce the child mortality rate in Ethiopia through public health messaging. In 2012, she was named #45 on Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People In Business 2012. Brukty is a founding member of Social Enterprise Ethiopia.
In 2010, Christian took a sabbatical from university to travel and discover the ways that social entrepreneurs use technology to solve social and environmental issues. While travelling, he organised a small community of citizens committed to supporting social entrepreneurs through skilled volunteerism and rapid innovation workshops. This was the beginning of Makesense.org. Makesense.org is now a community of 100,000 citizens who support 3,000 local initiatives, tackling the Global Goals in 100 cities across 45 countries. Makesense next ambition is to engage 180 million citizens on the global goals by 2030 through its platform through the same innovative methods it used for COVID-19 response. Christian is an advisory board member at the Goalkeeper Initiative of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, an Obama foundation scholar at Columbia University and a member of the French Government digital council.
Kendra has dedicated the past seven years to supporting social entrepreneurs from all over the world to grow and scale, by providing them with introductions, mentoring and advice from successful leaders via The Human Lending Library.
Before this she worked in investor relations for a sustainability investment group and prior to that, was responsible for a multi-million pound Government grant programme, supporting disadvantaged families and parents across the UK, in partnership with PwC.
She was the Chair of the board of trustees between 2014-2019 for the award winning Edinburgh Remakery and advises many other brilliant social enterprises in her spare time.
Joe is the founder and ‘Chief Encourager’ of All Heart NZ, a social enterprise which is driving sustainability through diverting unwanted items from businesses to positive impact in the community. With their innovative model, All Heart is changing the conversation around waste and sustainability as well as providing tangible and valuable support to not-for-profit’s and NZ communities. Joe is passionate about activating people in their place of significance and influence, and making a positive contribution to those around him and those in need.