Speakers

 

Omoyemi Akereke

Founder and Executive Director, Style House Files

Style House Files is a Fashion Business Development Agency that primarily focuses on the advancement of the Nigerian and African Fashion Industry.  At Style House Files, we fuse cutting edge creativity with initiatives that consistently seek to earn the industry commercial success, exposure and respect. Our wealth of knowledge, expertise and ability to deliver effectively on creative projects make us the go to service provider in the market place for innovative and strategic solutions that provide desired results in the African apparel and textile sector.

 

Alessandra Alonso 

Founder, Women in Travel CIC

Alessandra is the founder of women empowerment focussed, social enterprise Women in Travel cic. A senior professional with 20 years of experience in and around the Travel, Tourism and Hospitality industry.  Having held senior positions in prestigious companies including The World Travel & Tourism Council and KPMG she subsequently pursued her passion for supporting women and diversity more generally in the industry by setting up consultancy Shine and co-founding the Shine Awards for Women’s Achievement in Travel, Tourism and Hospitality in 2004. Recognised as a trail-blazer in the sector, Shine mentored and coached hundreds of female mentees from the sector and run highly successful tourism skills programmes across the UK, between 2003 and 2010.

Amany Asfour

World President of  International Federation for Business and Professional Women 

Dr. Amany Asfour is graduated from Faculty of Medicine – Cairo University and had her Master Degree & M.D. degree in Pediatrics

In her academic career, she is a Lecturer of Pediatrics at the National Research Center of Egypt.

She joined the private sector since she was a student at the Faculty of Medicine. Within few years she was able to establish her  company for Medical equipments with more than 30 brands

Her interests were not limited to establishing her private Business only but soon she realized the importance of creating an organization targeting Economic Empowerment of Women  & Young Women Entrepreneurship Promotion. As a result she established the Egyptian Business women association in 1995 with the objectives of promoting young generations of Women Entrepreneurs & giving guidance to women business owners of Small & Medium enterprises. The organization supports the mainstream of feminine gender in the Global Market.

Dr. Asfour than founded  Business and Professional Women of Egypt BPW – Egypt with its objectives of Economic Empowerment of Women and linking Business Women to the regional and global markets  and building the capacity of women owners of SMEs and Youth startups of businesses

 

Larissa Birthwright

Membership Manager, Travelife UK

 

Larisa Birthwright is the Membership Manager at Travelife For Hotels and Accommodation. Having worked at ABTA-owned sustainability certification scheme Travelife for the past 8 years, she has assisted a number of hotels and tour operators make successful sustainability journeys.  “Travelife is a fantastic tool for hoteliers to progress their work on sustainability and gain recognition for it through a common industry scheme.”

 

 Cherie Blair

Wife of former British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Leading lawyer and committed campaigner for women’s rights, Cherie set up the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women in 2008 to help women build small and growing businesses in developing and emerging markets so that they can contribute to their economies and have a stronger voice in their societies. 

As well as fighting for human rights in her professional career, Cherie is an active campaigner on equality and human rights issues. In addition to founding her own charity, Cherie remains closely involved with charities with a special emphasis on women and children.

Cherie was an Ambassador for London 2012, supporting the bid to host the Olympics in the UK and was awarded a CBE in the 2013 New Year's Honours List for services to women's issues and to charity in the UK and Overseas.

 

Maria Luisa Boyce

Director, Global Public Affairs UPS

 Maria Luisa Boyce serves as Director for UPS Global Public Affairs. Maria advocates for UPS priorities on Capitol Hill, government affairs efforts in Latin America and serves as a liaison for UPS to National Hispanic Organizations. Maria brings more than 20 years of experience as a dynamic leader that has worked to advance international trade, customs issues and cross border trade.

Prior to joining UPS, Maria served as U.S. Custom and Border Protection’s (CBP) Senior Advisor to the Commissioner for Trade and Private Sector Engagement and Director for the Office of Trade Relations. Maria assumed this role, after serving as the Assistant Commissioner for CBP's Office of Public Affairs.

At CBP, Maria advised the Commissioner and senior leadership of the impact of the agency's policies and regulations on the private sector. She was also responsible for the trade outreach strategy for the agency, assisting to increase compliance rate and improve communications with the private sector. She managed the Advisory Committee of Commercial Operations of Customs and Border Protection (COAC) and the User Fee Advisory Committee leading the interaction between COAC and CBP’s Senior Staff. She also led the efforts at the Border Interagency Executive Council, on Imports for the External Engagement Committee, comprised of over 30 agencies, for the implementation of the U.S. Single Window

 

Charcy Evers

 Fashion and retail trend specialist

Uses industry intelligence, trend research and an intuitive pulse on the zeitgeist to interpret trends and translate them into actionable insight for her clients.

Having worked with influential companies such as The Gap, Microsoft, Boeing, Estee Lauder & Nike among many others, her services range from design inspiration and product development to providing strategic planning and overall business direction.

Charcy is also an expert on Wall Street and advises the finance industry on the bottom line impact of trends at publicly traded retailers. Prior to forming her own company, Charcy ran North American sales for Jil Sander and was a director of retail at TSE before moving into the fast-paced world of trend forecasting at Peclers Paris. She is a go-to industry resource for major media outlets including WWD, Yahoo Style, Fox and Ebay, has been featured on Bloomberg TV, Yahoo Finance and CBS News for her trend expertise, speaks regularly at industry conferences and is often profiled for her own personal style.

 

Sylvia Forchap

Founder & Chief Executive, Voice of Nations

Dr Sylvia is the visionary leader and founder of Global Visionary Women Network. She is also the founder and CEO of “Behaviour Changed” award winning community Interest Company, Voice of Nations and Little Angels Foundation (Orphanage in Cameroon).  She is a charismatic and innovative 21st Century female inspirational and motivational thinker, speaker, and writer/author, with a compelling vision and passion to positively impact and transform lives and communities through communication, education, empowerment and enterprising. She is very positive and dynamic, and derives extreme satisfaction in motivating and inspiring others to blossom in their maximum potential and excel into positions of leadership and financial independence. She grew up in Cameroon, where she obtained her GCE A’ level and later on moved to Italy where she earned a Doctor of Pharmacy degree in the University Ferrara Italy

Krysta Fox

Executive Director - Free Zone, DMCC

With a thoroughly international background, Krysta has lived and completed work assignments in a variety of countries ranging from Spain to South Africa, as well as a significant period working in her native Australia where she headed up a number of major projects, including BP’s IFRS implementation.

Qualified as a fellow certified practicing accountant and a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, Krysta also holds Master degrees in Professional Accounting and Business Administration and prior to taking up her position at the DMCC, was working in Dubai with Al Futtaim.

Acknowledging the challenging aspects of her current role, Krysta is required to continually develop the Free Zone’s approach, highlighting its suitability for both large corporates that are relocating to the region, through to SME’s that are looking to flourish.

Commenting on the DMCC’s appeal Krysta summarised; “It’s no one thing that makes us stand out, but a combination of the ideal location, with the right governing authority that understands how to conduct business in a friendly way. We are constantly looking to partner or work with industries and sectors in order to create opportunities for our members.

 

Liam Freeman

Fashion Features Editor, Vogue

 

As Fashion Features Editor of Vogue International, Liam writes and commissions in-depth articles spanning the fields of art, design and culture, which are published across 12 Vogue websites around the world. He previously worked on staff at British Vogue and Porter magazine, and has contributed to the likes of AnOther Magazine, i-D, the New York Times, Refinery29, Vice and W magazine, among others. His writing has been shortlisted for a British Society of Magazine Editors award and, in 2016, he received a fellowship from Arts Council England to research methods of textile production in West Africa. His findings – African textiles inspiring the international fashion industry: are the economic rewards properly shared? – were published in the Financial Times.

 

H.E. Ms. Rula “BibiGul” Ghani

First Lady of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan

Since assuming the responsibilities of First Lady of Afghanistan in October 2014, H.E. Rula Ghani has visited with many of her compatriots. She sees her role as a listener, a facilitator, and an advocate. She strongly believes in women’s aptitudes and was instrumental in assisting a group of young Afghan women entrepreneurs establish a Chamber of Commerce for Afghan Women in March 2017.

 

The First Lady was born in Lebanon and met her husband, President Ashraf Ghani at

the American University of Beirut in 1975. She holds a Diploma de l’Institut d’Etudes Politiques of Paris and two Masters, one in Political Science and the other in Journalism.

Juliee Gichuru

Kenyan Entrepreneur and Media Personality

Julie Gichuru is a media personality and entrepreneur with investments in media, retail, hospitality and entertainment sectors. Julie is an Independent Director on the Boards of Brand KENYA Board and Acumen Communications Ltd and is a Fellow and Trustee of the Africa Leadership Initiative EA, the East African arm of the Aspen Global Leadership Network. Julie conceptualised and hosts syndicated pan African television show Africa Leadership Dialogues.

Julie's career in the media over the past 18 years has seen her work across the fields of broadcast, print and digital media. Julie has also pioneered an impressive number of television shows, from the first Kenyan investigative TV series, The Inside Story on KTN to various current affairs shows at NTV including political and current affairs programs Showdown, On the Spot, You The Jury and The People's Voice, and the celebrated news program Sunday Live and peace and reconciliation program Fist to Five at Citizen TV. Also included in this list is the celebrated post election peace specials Voices of Reason. She was a key player in the organisation of the first Presidential Debates in Kenya in 2013 and had the honour to host the first Presidential Debate in the series. Through ARIMUS Media Limited Julie now oversees the production of quality African content such as Africa Leadership Dialogues, high school debate platform Great Debaters Contest and entertainment series Maisha, among other programs.

Julie is a celebrated Peace Ambassador and has been recognised for her peace efforts both nationally and internationally. Most notably, she received the Martin Luther King Salute to Greatness in 2008 for advocacy on peace and non violent action following the 2007 post election violence. She is the first African woman to receive this award.

 

Simon Greenbury

Cheeky Monkey Media, Director

Simon has fvworked within the travel and tourism sector for over 30 years with specific expertise in marketing, branding, meetings and exhibitions.  He was a key player on World Travel Market for ten years and was instrumental in creating World Travel Market Responsible Tourism Day, as well as being part of Reed Travel Exhibitions marketing team for the IBTM worldwide shows and International Luxury Travel Market.  He was marketing director for Boat & Caravan Show and event director for Best of Britain & Ireland Travel Show.  His company Cheeky Monkey is playing a major part in the International Business Festival running the Future Global Opportunities for UK Tourism' conference.

Magda Jamal

Business Development Director, Sunrise Evolution

Responsible for the Business Development within Emerging Markets, Ms. Jamal is passionate in keeping herself update on technology market developments, searching on every single challenge for learning opportunities, individual and professional growing. Involved with internal teams to deliver outstanding presentation, catching up profitable business opportunities, she is responsible for product training to EMEA sales team and also involved with board team to identify and evaluate market, new target clients, to develop and implement strategic sales plan and cross selling.

 

 

     

 

 

Soumaya Keynes

Economics correspondent, The Economist

Soumaya Keynes writes about trade and the US economy for The Economist, and has written about topics including the role of women within economics, the wisdom and impact of President Donald Trump's trade policies, and the economics of trade in cheese. She appears regularly on the Economist's Money Talks podcast. She is also the co-host of the Trade Talks podcast, a weekly podcast about the economics of trade policy hosted by the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington DC. Before joining The Economist, Soumaya was a researcher at the Institute for Fiscal Studies, and before that a policy adviser at HM Treasury. 

H.E. Ms. Esther Lungu

First Lady of the Republic of Zambia

Her Excellency, Mrs. Esther Lungu is the current First Lady of the Republic of Zambia and Founder of the Esther Lungu Foundation Trust. Since assuming her tenure as First Lady in 2015, Mrs. Lungu has utilized her distinguished position to reinforce her passion for uplifting the wellbeing of humanity which work she has been doing for more than 23 years.

 

Mrs Lungu has levered her position to focus on the economic empowerment of women living in rural and hard to reach areas.  She advocates for the empowerment women and girls; maternal and child health; and for persons with disabilities.  Her Excellency has joined global leaders to press for the elimination of child marriage, discrimination against persons with disabilities; and elimination of gender based violence.

Through her Foundation, Mrs. Lungu is co-financing food processing equipment for women in agriculture; low cost boarding houses for girls education; drilling of boreholes for clean drinking water and assistive devices for children with disabilities.

Her Excellency Mrs. Esther Lungu is a member of the Organization of African First Ladies Against HIV and AIDS, she is also a member of the Stop Cervical and Breast Cancer First Ladies Forum, she is patron of the Lafarge Foundation in Zambia, she is also the patron for SOS Children Villages in Zambia.

 

During the Starkey hearing Floundation 17th Annual awards Gala in July 201 in Minneapolis U.S.A,   the First Lady was awarded as the 2017 Humanitarian Honoree alongside actor, director, writer and founder of the Eastern Congo initiative Ben Affleck; the Wilf Family Foundations; FedEx and Scott Borchetta and Sandi Spike Borchetta of Big Machine Records and Music Has Value.  With this award, the First Lady of Zambia joins other notable individuals like Presidents Tony Blair of Britain and Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, Archbishop Desmond tutu, sir Richard Branson, actress and philanthropist Jennifer Garner and many others since to receive this award since its introduction in the year 2000. 

She has also been awarded by the Medical Association of Zambia for her adovocacy work on health for rural communities and she has been recognized for supporing persons with hemophilia in Zambia, resulting in significantly improving their quality of life by the World Federation of Hemophilia.

Her Excellency Mrs Lungu has also been decorated by Lions Clubs International with the Presidential Pin for her outstanding work to uplift humanity since assuming office as First Lady.

 

Chiedza Makonnen

 CEO/Creative Director Afrodesiac Worldwide

Chiedza Makonnen is Chief Executive Officer, Creative Director of Womenswear and  cultural lifestyle brand Afrodesiac Worldwide based in Accra Ghana and New York City.

Chiedza is responsible for spearheading her company from a home based business to a premier emerging brand sold globally. She has over sixteen years experience in multiple areas of the New York fashion industry including marketing, branding, product development and as as lead  designer.  Chiedza is a passionate advocate for preserving the textile industry in Ghana. She additionally serves as founder and executive director of The Revolutionary Underground Foundation mentoring and  providing educational scholarships to girls in Africa. Chiedza focuses her business and philanthropic efforts on empowering women and girls and improving opportunities for trade for women run SME’s.

Isa Mueller-Wegner

Vice President, Emerging European Countries (EEC).

Isa oversees all aspects of eBay’s business and is responsible for eBay’s operations in markets such as France, Italy, Spain, Turkey and MENA countries.

Isa joined eBay in 2014 as Senior Director of EMEA strategy. Prior to this, Isa worked at consulting firm Bain & Company in both Zurich and London where she started out as a consultant and left as Principal. Isa has also worked for the BBC in Strategy and as a consultant for Arthur D Little in London and Singapore.

She has an MBA from Harvard University (Baker Scholar) and a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Oxford University.

In her spare time, Isa – a mother of two - enjoys travelling, spending time outdoors in the Swiss mountains with her family and all the wonderful cuisines of the EEC.

 

Nataliya Mykolska

Trade Representative of Ukraine –Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine

 

Nataliya Mykolska has an extensive experience of over 15 years working as a legal counsel on all aspects of international trade including WTO and free trade agreements, trade remedy proceedings, trade financing, cross-border trade transactions and contracts, agency and distribution, franchising and other matters.

 

In addition to catering to clients’ needs throughout her legal practice within Ukraine’s top law firms, Ms. Mykolska also worked with governmental institutions to assist in approximation of Ukrainian legislation to Ukraine's international obligations, including the development of the EU-Ukraine DCFTA provisions on market access for goods, trade remedies, SPS measures, customs facilitation and dispute settlement. Her professional experience also includes advising on potential impact on clients’ business of “new” free trade agreements, developing business positions and representing clients’ interests in relations with governments, etc. For a number of years Ms. Mykolska advised the World Bank and International Finance Corporation on customs law and regulatory issues, taking part in the Doing Business project.

 

As Trade Representative of Ukraine – Deputy Minister of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine, Ms. Mykolska is focused on launching the state export support system, promoting Ukrainian products and services on export markets, multilateral and bilateral preferential agreements, consistent and predictable trade policy as well as on defending the interests of Ukraine at the WTO.

 

Nataliya Mykolska is initiator of SheExports Program in Ukraine, which is the part of ITC SheTrades initiative. SheExports Program is coordinated by Export Promotion Office under the Ministry and developed in line with the Export Strategy of Ukraine.

 

Alii Shlam Nawaz

DIRECTOR GENERAL /CEO LAKSALA

Mr.Ali Ahlam Nawaz Presently as the Chief Executive Officer / Director General of Sri Lanka Handicrafts Board under the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.  Mr. Nawaz  has  shouldered  and  succeeded  at  chartering  a  better  and  sustainable  connectivity amongst the three national bodies which form the partnership of the LAKSALA brand name (namely the Sri  Lanka  Handicraft  Board, National  Craft  Council and  the  National  Design  Centre),  responsible  of  the uplifting the handicrafts industry of Sri Lanka  and Spearheaded and Turnaround to Profits 2016  and 2017  LAKSALA the state entity to Win Industrial Excellence Award from Sri Lankan Chambers of Small and Medium Industries in the year of 2016 and 2017  during his tenure Laksala turn around to profits.  Being a dynamic risk taker, Ali Ahlam Nawaz has worn many hats in Retail Banking & Finance, Gas & Energy Sector, Fashion Retail and Healthcare Technologies, Providing strategic leaderships and business development. Nawaz is the Founder of Lyons Consulting Pvt LTD and Founder of “Thani Oruvan”( Self-made)  TV reality show –and Hosted by him.

Anna T Mokgokong

 

Honorary Consul General of Iceland in Pretoria

 

Dr. Mokgokong is a co-founder and Executive Chairperson of Community Investment Holdings (Pty) Ltd., a well renowned business figure in South Africa and globally with widespread experience in Healthcare, Academia and Commerce. 

She is recognized as a Senior Director of Companies on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange as she serves on five listed companies namely:  Non-executive Chairperson of Afrocentric Investment Corporation, Rebosis Property Fund Limited and Jasco Electronics Holdings Limited and non-executive Director of Companies and first female Director of Shoprite Holdings Limited the largest retailer in Africa as well as Adcock Ingram Holdings Limited, a leading pharmaceutical manufacturer. 

She also serves on numerous non-listed entities, including Seriti Coal which she chairs and is the second largest coal supplier to Eskom utility.

 

She has received numerous local and international accolades as a Community and Business leader, including SA Businesswoman of the Year (1999) and one of the Leading Women Entrepreneurs of the World (1998).

 

She has served in numerous councils of academic institutions as well as civil society commissions such as The Independent Commission for Remuneration of Public Office Bearers, where she was appointed as Deputy Chairperson by the former President Mr. Thabo Mbeki (from 2004 – 2009);  She was also a Commissioner of the Interim National Defence Force Commission (SANDF) (from 2009 – 2013).

 

She is a social activist and passionate about women empowerment transformation to bring about equality in the economy of South Africa.

 

Recently she was appointed Honorary Consul General of Iceland in Pretoria (2017).

 

Sanem Oktar Öğüt

 

President, Kagider, Women Entrepreneurs Association of Turkey

 

Sanem’s career started in Colgate Palmolive in 1993. She established her first company Tribeca Communications in 1997. In 1999, she founded Tribal Sales & Marketing Support Services; in 2002, founded her database marketing company, directComm. She lastly founded Limonsocial in 2011.  In 2015, WPP announced that GroupM, the leading global media investment group acquired  majority stake in directComm. Recently, she became partner and CEO of Wunderman İstanbul. A serial entrepreneur; she was one of the  Top Ten Women Enterpreneurs of Turkey in 2010; her numerous work and projects have been awarded many times. Since May 2015 she is the President of KAGIDER; also a member of W20 Steering Committee.

H.E. Adela Raz

Deputy Foreign Minister for Economic Cooperation 

Ms. Adela Raz holds an MA degree in Law and Diplomacy with a focus on Economic Development from the Fletcher School/Tufts University and a BA with honors with triple majors in International Relations, Political Science, and Economics from Simmons College in Boston, USA. She also holds a certificate in International Development from the Fletcher School/ Tufts University.

Ms. Raz possess eight years of extensive experience in the fields of political and economic analysis, policy development, media and communication and governance, with various governmental and non governmental, local and international organizations.

She started her career with the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA). She identified policy areas where UNAMA Central Field Office could help the Ministry of Women Affairs and its regional offices adopting approaches about women participation in economic and social arenas. She helped running the Political Rights Verification Campaign during the first presidential and parliamentary elections.

In 2013, Ms. Adela Raz was appointed as a -first female- Deputy Spokesperson and Director of Communications for the President. She moved into a new position as the Chief of Staff at the Administrative Office of the President in November 2014, and in March 2016, she assumed her current post as the new Deputy Foreign Minister for Economic Cooperation.

Her notable work in Afghanistan includes; completing an assessment of Afghanistan's Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO) and Civil Society Organizations (CSO) law. The aim of this evaluation was to identify clauses that required amendments for accurately responding to the needs of CSO and NGOs in Afghanistan. Ms. Raz liaised with the government, UN agencies, and NGOs to create baseline data on the human rights, political and development situations and gender equality. Also she co-authored a study about “Public Private Cooperation in Fragile States”.

From 2010 to early 2013, Ms. Raz has worked with an international development organization in the United States, with projects focused on Afghanistan and Central Asia.

Adela Raz is also on the board of directors of a US based non-profit organization, helping to educate Afghan women with providing scholarships for undergraduate degrees in the US. Also, she had been a frequent commentator on the Af-Pak regional affairs.

She is fluent in Pashto, Dari and English.

Dame Stephanie Shirley CH

Founder, FI Group

Dame Stephanie Shirley (84) arrived in England as an unaccompanied child refugee in 1939, took a maths degree at night school and started a female-friendly software company back in 1962. This eventually employed 8,500 people and was valued at $3bn when it was acquired by the SopraSteria Group in 2007.

The first female President of the British Computer Society and at one time the 11th richest woman in England, Dame Stephanie (or Steve as she came to call herself) has given away over $100m to IT projects such as the Oxford Internet Institute and to her late son’s disorder of autism.

Her memoire, Let IT Go, is being made into a film; her TED talk has been viewed over 2m times and she was appointed Companion of Honour (one of only 65 worldwide) last year.

 

Paola Subacchi

Senior Research Fellow, Global Economy & Finance, Chatham House

Paola Subacchi is an economist, writer and commentator on the functioning

and governance of the international and monetary system. She is a senior fellow at Chatham House (The Royal Institute of International Affairs) in London, a visiting professor at the University of Bologna, and a director of a number of public companies. Her latest book, The People’s Money: How China is building a global currency, was published by Columbia University Press. An Italian national, she studied at Universitá Bocconi in Milan and at the University of Oxford. In 2016 she received the honour Cavaliere dell’Ordine della Stella d’Italia.

Max Steinberg

Chairman, 2018 International Business Festival

 

Max began his career at Liverpool City Council in 1975 before moving to the Housing Corporation where he spent 25 years working in all aspects of housing, eventually becoming Director of Investment and Regeneration North before becoming Chief Executive of Elevate East Lancashire in 2003.

On joining Liverpool Vision, Max oversaw Liverpool’s award winning six-month participation in the World EXPO Shanghai 2010 and under his leadership Liverpool Vision has been responsible for hosting the Global Entrepreneurship Congress 2012.

 

Adi Maimalaga Tafuna

Executive Director, Women in Business Development Incorporated, Samoa.

Adi Maimalaga Tafuna’i is Co-founder and Executive Director of Women in Business Development Inc in Samoa. The organisation was set up in 1991 and she has since led it through several transitions, mainly shifting from economic empowerment for urban women to creating and sustaining rural economies for struggling Samoan families. In the  1990s, she began a campaign to organically certify farms to add value to their products and ensure families wellbeing and health through eating organic produce. Mrs Tafuna’i was involved in reviving the coconut industry in Samoa through introducing virgin coconut oil pressing and, in 2008 she confirmed a fair trade contract with cosmetic giant The Body Shop. Mrs Tafuna’i was also instrumental in reviving the dying art of Samoa’s fine mat weaving and transforming it into an income-generating activity for Samoa’s weavers. Regionally, she played a key role in the formation of the Regional Organic Task Force, which brought together regional organic practitioners and established the Pacific Organic and Ethical Community, which developed the Pacific Organic Standard, only the third regional organic standard worldwide. She believes that sharing is the pathway to success for small Pacific countries that do not have the resources or quantities of product to sustain an export market. In 2006, she served as the chair of the Pacific Island Association of Non-Governmental Organisations. Her dedication was recognized in 2008 when she was awarded the New Zealand and Samoa Prime Minister’s Fellowship award.  In 2010, Samoa’s Government named Mrs Tafuna’i as “Person of the Year”. In 2012  Mrs Tafuna’i’s work was acknowledged with the Economic Empowerment award at the Vital Voices Global Leadership Awards in Washington DC.

 

Hon. Dr. Isatou Touray

Minister of Trade, Industry, Regional Integration, and Employment, The Gambia

Isatou Touray is the co-founder and Executive Director of the Gambia Committee on Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and Children (GAMCOTRAP), a leading organisation in the fight against female genital mutilation. She has supported many grassroots groups to organize and contribute to national development of The Gambia, which earned her great respect and recognition across the country. She is known for her decades-long efforts towards women's sexual and reproductive health and rights. In 2016, she was the first female candidate in history to run for president in The Gambia. She holds a PhD in Development Studies with emphasis on Gender, from the University of Sussex, United Kingdom

 

 

Full list of speakers to come