Brian Richardson is currently a Founding Director and CEO of WIZZIT International, a global pioneer in mobile banking and financial inclusion. WIZZIT was launched in South Africa in November 2004 and in providing affordable banking to the mass market was the first to launch as part of its offering, cell phone banking that works across all the networks and all phones and SIM cards. WIZZIT solves not only an accessibility and affordability issue but from a convenience point of view offers 24/7 real time transactions and hence is “Your Bank in Your Pocket.” Brian is listed in Who’s Who of South African Business as well as the International Biography of Distinguished Leaders. He is an Ashoka Fellow – a global network of social entrepreneurs. He has lectured and presented at seminars and conferences throughout the world and was invited by the Clinton Global Initiative to present the WIZZIT model as a means to “Bank a Billion”; he has presented at SIBOS and at the G20 Financial Inclusion Summit in Mexico. He has also been invited to present at Harvard Business School and is a key-note speaker at many leading global conferences.
Carron graduated from law school and spent the early part of her career consulting in the formulation and implementation of corporate strategy for Braxton Associates, a UK based strategy consulting firm. Thereafter she entered law articles and on being admitted as an attorney in 1996, she joined Syfrets Bank, in the Private Client division. Over the next 5 years she worked in Financial Services gaining specific experience in fund management and investment analysis. She obtained her CFA in October 2001. At the end of 2001 she started her own business and established a number of successful entrepreneurial business ventures during the following 9 years. Carron joined Cadiz in 2010 as an SRI Credit Analyst with specific focus on unlisted credit in the area of impact investing and socially responsible investing. She is currently the Head of Impact Investing at Cadiz, and manages the Cadiz High Impact Fund, the Cadiz Enterprise Development Fund and the recently launched AMIIF (African Medicines Impact Investment Fund). She is responsible for the sourcing, screening and structuring of new unlisted high impact investments and has been instrumental in structuring in excess of R1 billion of unlisted credit transactions.
During a time of crude home repossessions after loan default and resulting widespread payment boycotts, Charlene developed a vital intermediary between hostile lenders and borrowers. Armed with deep insights into the concerns of both groups, her Home Loan Guarantee Company (HLGC) created innovative insurance and risk management products protecting against HIV/AIDS risks and a portion of the borrower financial risk while requiring all parties to bear some risk. These products attracted lenders back into a market that badly needed servicing as the desire for homeownership was ballooning with the impending decline of Apartheid. She is now spreading many of her core ideas to other parts of Africa.
David Pollock is an Ashoka senior advisor since 2006. During the past three years he has been involved in recruiting, training, coaching and mentoring, performance development, and expansion to Japan and China. Prior to Ashoka, David held leadership positions in a number of companies spanning 35 years and living on three continents. The companies include: Stormwater Management Inc. (USA), Kässbohrer Geländefahrzeug (Germany), Hyster/NACCO Materials Handling Group (UK) and Cummins Engine Company (Indiana, the Philippines, Singapore). Throughout his career, David guided organizations to exceptional performance through high degrees of team participation and effective hands-on leadership. David is also active in the Young Presidents Organization/World President’s Organization.
Garth is a doctor qualifying at the University of the Witwatersrand, with further. In 1992 he combined his interest in story and health to found the NGO Soul City. Soul City works in 12 countries. It has produced award winning TV and radio dramas supported by print media, social mobilisation and advocacy. It consistently reaches over 35 million people in the region. In 2002 Garth established Heartlines an NGO that produces films and TV series as a basis to promote values in society. They also established forgood, an internet platform that connects causes to people wanting to do good. Garth is a Schwab fellow of the World Economic Forum (WEF), is on the WEF Global Agenda Council for social networking and is a Senior Ashoka fellow. He is deputy chairperson of the Witkoppen Clinic board and is a board member of Masikuhle early childhood development. He also founded the ROSEAct Saturday school in Alexandra in 1992.
As MD of the 3i’s Group and FutureFit Founder, Gary has been enabling entrepreneurs, individuals, teams, small and growing business, and large organisations to unleash their unique transformation capacity. As an executive & team coach, impact entrepreneur, business development specialist, facilitator and keynote speaker, he is acknowledged widely for his ability to ignite possibility in people and organisations. A Certified Professional Co-active Coach (CPCC), trained by the Coaches Training Institute (California) and a member of the International Coaches Federation (ICF). His key areas of expertise include impact entrepreneurship, business development, leadership, business transformation, strategy execution, human capital development, enterprise development, and high-performance team development. His book “Coaching Possibility, 101 Insights” is an anecdotal reference reflecting on barriers to fulfilment, meaning, purpose and execution in both an organisational and individual context.
Ian is the Project Leader of Red Bull Amaphiko, an international programme aimed at giving wings to social entrepreneurs who are using their talents and creativity to make a difference in their communities, and inspiring a broader audience to do the same. He joined Ogilvy & Mather London as a graduate in 1986, responsible for clients such as Ford, Guinness and Unilever. He moved to Ogilvy in Cape Town in 1990, becoming the youngest ever Board Director at the age of 29, responsible for the SAB, Audi and Syfrets accounts. In 1996, he left O&M to start a new agency, Bull Calvert Pace, in conjunction with the Lowe Group, one of the world’s leading advertising agency groups. In 2000, the agency took over the Lintas agency in Johannesburg. In the same year, it won the Financial Mail award for Small Agency of the Year, and by 2001 became the top ranking South African creative agency at the Loerie and Cannes awards. In 2002, Ian was appointed to the Board of the Association of Communications Agencies of South Africa. At the end of 2002, he left the agency to start Instant Grass, South Africa’s first specialist youth insight agency. At the 2004 AdFocus awards, SA’s premier marketing awards, Instant Grass won the award for both Newcomer of the Year, and also overall Marketing Agency of the Year. Ian drove the expansion of Instant Grass into Russia, Japan, Middle East and other African markets. It is now recognised as a global authority on youth in emerging markets.
Jose Pedro Ferrão
José leads a team of professionals that provide leadership and support for a network of community-based United Ways in 41 countries and territories. He and his team facilitate the adaption of a set of Global Standards that make United Way organizations unique and successful wherever they are in the world. José joined United Way Worldwide after serving as COO and SVP of Marketing at United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley (Boston) for three years. He has worked in South Africa & Europe and Middle East in senior management positions including serving as the President, Europe, Middle East and Africa for Carlson Marketing Worldwide. In his role as Executive Vice President, International Network, José has responsibility for leading the development of the framework and strategies that support the United Way Worldwide Regional Offices in Europe, Asia-Pacific, Latin America and Africa. He is also the primary relationship manager, in collaboration with the Regional Vice Presidents, interfacing with the national and local partner organizations in ways that will drive their success in building better communities and advance the common good.
Mark was a co-founder of Black Umbrellas, now Shanduka Black Umbrellas (SBU) in 2007. Having been involved extensively with the project in a non-executive capacity, Mark joined the organisation full time as CEO in April 2010. Mark is a South African Chartered Accountant and has several years’ senior finance experience with a number of leading private companies and in the not for profit sector with Oxfam GB. Mark has worked closely with some of South Africa’s leading entrepreneurs and been involved at an executive level in growing companies from start-ups to leaders in their fields and utilises this experience within SBU to create an environment within which the clients will thrive. SBU, a project within the Shanduka Foundation, is a non-profit incubation enterprise development service provider which seeks to deliver real and meaningful transformation through empowered business growth. SBU affords collaboration opportunities between 100% black-owned businesses, government, the private sector and civil society by providing a critical foundation for sustainable futures.
Prior to launching Mark Kaplan and Associates Mark had spent the previous twenty-six years involved in the management of Johannesburg Stock Exchange listed businesses in the Logistics, Supply Chain Management, Tourism, Commercial & Trade Finance and Retail Industries. During this period he was Executive Chairman for many years of the Micor Group of Companies, co-founder in 1997 and non-executive director of Tourism Investment Corporation [Tourvest], and co-founder in 1999 and Chief Executive Officer of the DNA Supply Chains Group. The scope and extent of Mark’s exposure to business at a strategic and operational level across a number of service industries trading in Southern Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa and in other International Markets has given him an extensive repertoire of skills, capabilities and business experience appropriate to his current focus on Business Building, Deal Making and Leadership Development. This is supplemented by Mark’s expertise in negotiation, facilitation, coaching & mentoring, and advisory & consulting.
Rolf Huber has been Managing Director of the Board of Siemens Stiftung since October 2012. Together with his board colleagues Nathalie von Siemens and Georg Bernwieser, he is responsible for the operative implementation of the goals defined by the foundation. Rolf Huber completed his master's degree in American Studies, Political Science and Communications Science at the Ludwig Maximilian University in Munich and the University of North Carolina, USA. Prior to joining Siemens AG in 1989, he worked for several years as a news editor. He has held various positions at Siemens in the areas of press and public relations, as well as marketing and human resources development in the company's international communications departments. From 2009 to 2012, Rolf Huber resided in Johannesburg, South Africa, and was responsible for the company’s CSR programs as well as relations with governments on the African continent.
Ross joined Ashoka in November 2014. Ross has founded and grown more than 20 businesses around the world. Over the past 8 years, he has focused his energy on building a ground-breaking education programme that aims to empower and incline young people to be changemakers – to make a better world.The ‘Better World’ programme aims to develop a sophisticated understanding of what quality of life actually is - and a deep knowledge of our inner powers that most determine our quality of life.The programme is currently live with 500,000 children in Zimbabwe and Tanzania, and is now being extended to Ghana, the UK and Mexico. This grew out of earlier projects that Ross conceived and led for Pearson (under the banner of Education for Economic and Social Development), which involved ministries, employers and educators evaluating and improving the effectiveness of education systems, institutions and programmes around the world.