Now nine years running, in honour of International Women’s Day, I’ve named 5 awesome women; women who I appreciate, admire, have learned from and who I personally know.
Here are my 5 for 2022.
Jorien van Duijn – Jorien and I met during my first ever trip to the Netherlands while were both attending International President’s Meeting of AIESEC. Over the years, we’ve shared the many ups and downs of our personal and professional lives always coming back to the themes of human development and transformation. Having worked in the Middle East in Bahrain, she spent many years back in the Netherlands driving for a renewable energy future at Shell. She recently decided to embark on a new adventure as an entrepreneur support planet conscious leaders and organisations.
Roanne van Voorst – I was introduced to Roanne via her co-founder Martijn Boomsma with whom she has setup the Hatch Collective, helping people to unmachine themselves and journey to a more sustainable humanity. Roanne is futures anthropologist and she researches, publishes, consults on what it means to be human. I had the honour of being interviewed by her for the Unmachine Yourself podcast. During this encounter, we also discovered our mutual family connection to Armenia.
Michelle Gallant – My friendship with Michelle goes back to our university days when we met through AIESEC. Besides an intense experience we had together in running one of AIESEC Canada’s national conferences, we also worked and lived together in the Netherlands while working for AIESEC International. Michelle has always been a powerful communicator and passionate about business meeting its responsibility to all stakeholders (customers, shareholders, society and our planet). She is currently Enterprise Director of the Scotiabank Women Initiative breaking down barriers to increase economic opportunities for women.
Sime Amirkhanyan – Sime is Director and Co-founder of Youth Empowerment and Sustainability (YES) a non-governmental organization whose main goal is to empower the youth across several countries, primarily focusing on the youth in Armenia. In 2021, I was one of the youth mentors for the ImPower Youth Mentoring Programme. It was an amazing experience to be part of a team of mentors around the world, learning from each other to help, guide and explore together with our mentees how to shape their future personal and professional development.
Monica Araya – I met Monica when I was working with the team of EVBox in their journey of moving from being a startup to a scale up. She hosted their premier conference rEVolution, which sits directly in line with her goal of detoxifying transportation by accelerating electrification. She has delivered an inspiring TED Talk about what Costa Rica has been doing to get rid of fossil fuels – check it out below.