WEConnect International Europe Conference 2019 - Speakers

Nicola Ainger
Managing Director, SustainIt – a certified women’s business enterprise

Nicola is Managing Director of SustainIt, a family-run, global sustainability consultancy, working alongside her sister Charlie Stockford (CEO) who founded the company in 2006. With a passion to drive positive change in the world, SustainIt helps clients like Mondelez, Sky and British Land to use non-financial data to drive change, engage stakeholders and make their businesses more sustainable. Ultimately, that’s good for them and for the future of our planet.

Nicola began her career in hospitality. Having developed a love of travel Nicola’s early career included a diverse range of jobs as a chef for a global F1 race team, catering for corporate events in San Francisco and working in a restaurant in Cape Town. Completing a business degree via evening classes enabled Nicola to develop her passion for business and that, along with a keen interest in people and numbers are the keys to her success as Managing Director of SustainIt.

Website: sustainitsolutions.com | Twitter: @sustainit

Suesal Arieli
Managing Director and Founder, Arieli & Company – a certified women’s business enterprise

Suesal is Managing Director and Founder of Arieli & Company, a global leader in executive development. The company specialises in equipping leaders with the soft skills and behaviours they need in a complex, fast-paced world. Arieli & Company counts AB InBev, the BBC and London Business School among its clients. Suesal works with senior leaders to develop customised leadership training and academies. She is passionate about helping leaders and organisations unlock hidden potential to drive impact and measurable results. She uses a complex adaptive systems approach to achieve rigour and relevance across her research and practice.

Prior to working at Arieli & Company, Suesal spent 10 years investigating the intersection of performance and organisational context by consulting across diverse fields. She has worked at Deutsche Bank, ITN, and legal firm McAllister Olivarius LLP.


Maggie Berry
Executive Director for Europe, WEConnect International

Maggie is Executive Director for Europe for WEConnect International, a global organisation championing supplier diversity in procurement and helping majority owned women businesses to connect into the corporate supply chain. WEConnect International’s corporate members represent $1 trillion in annual purchasing power and are true pioneers in inclusive sourcing and global supplier development in Europe. Maggie has lead responsibility for the organisation in Europe and her role involves developing corporate and public sector support as well as growing and supporting a network of c1,500 women owned businesses across Europe.

Previously, Maggie ran womenintechnology.co.uk – an online job board, recruitment and networking forum for women working in the technology profession in the UK. Maggie remains informally involved with championing women in the technology profession and is a Freeman at the Information Technologists' Company in the City of London. In June 2019, Maggie was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in recognition of her services to women in business and technology.


Jenny Bolt
Actress and Director, in partnership, Funny Women – a certified women’s business enterprise

Jenny is an actress and director. She is a skilled workshop facilitator and coaches individuals in presentation skills.

Jenny works with Funny Women on a regular basis providing improvisation workshops for a growing portfolio of clients including Investec, Women in Rail, PWC, JLL, Canada Life, Airbnb and NatWest.

Website: www.funnywomen.com | Twitter: @funnywomen

Joanita Bonnier
Managing Director and Founder, Bonnier Business Coaching

Joanita`s career spans senior roles in the global healthcare industry in the Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland and Austria. Signature strengths are an academic background, sharp analytical brain, strong leadership, business restructuring and cultural change in local and matrix structures, sales and marketing excellence and strategic business intelligence. Her track record of delivering outstanding business results is rooted in her firm belief of building engaged, passionate, motivated high performing teams through individual & team development, training, mentoring and coaching.

Since 2012 Joanita has been working as a certified executive and business coach, team trainer, workshop moderator, webinar presenter, consultant and interim manager in Europe.


Wendy Broersen
CEO & Founder, Superwomen Academy – a certified women’s business enterprise

Wendy is an serial entrepreneur, has won several awards and nominations, had her own Dutch TV show and is an international speaker. She loves travelling, reading, skiing and cooking and baking. She is a mother of two and married to Jos, her superman.

She is CEO/Founder of an international company which helps companies to attract, retain and develop their female workforce - Superwomen Academy.


Jean Chawapiwa
Country Director, WEConnect International South Africa

Appointed in August 2015, Jean, with her team and the support of corporate champions, has significantly grown WEConnect International in South Africa both in terms of corporate membership and women-owned businesses. Jean is a dynamic, practised and immensely effective entrepreneur and senior management professional with six years experience as an entrepreneur. She has nine years senior management experience in mining corporate communications working for Rio Tinto, Barrick Gold and Placer Dome. She has 12 years in middle to senior communications management experience in telecoms at BT and science and technology with CSIR. Her professional work experience began in the UK before moving to South Africa and Jean has subsequently worked and done business in over 19 African countries including Namibia, Guinea, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Madagascar, Tanzania, Cameroon, DRC, Uganda, Ethiopia, Nigeria, Kenya, Senegal and Botswana. Besides her passion for WEConnect International, Jean and her team are also focussed on helping companies do business in Africa and on coaching professionals and entrepreneurs. Jean served as the chair of Junior Achievement Africa from November 2015 to June 2019. She is also a member of the Junior Achievement Worldwide board as well as being a Mining Dialogues 360 advisory council member in South Africa.


Chrissie Harrison
Country Marketing Manager UK, Intel Corporation

Chrissie is the UK Country Marketing Director within the Global Markets and Partner Division covering all of Intel’s product groups, verticals, industries and partners with a team of campaign managers and product marketing specialists. With almost two decades experience within the IT industry, spanning operations, sales and marketing, Chrissie has spent the last ten plus years working with suppliers to execute various events, campaigns and programs. She has extensive experience and knowledge of the relationships, highlights and challenges of third party engagements but is also an advocate of the innovation and creativity that is generated from a diverse and inclusive partnership.

Website: www.intel.com | Twitter: @IntelUK

Mary Healy
Global Digital Lead, Accenture Media Management, Accenture

Mary is the Global Digital Lead for the Accenture Media Management practice and she is responsible for developing offerings which help advertisers assess their digital media capabilities and the value delivered from their agencies/vendors. Mary is also responsible for a variety of clients projects ranging from vendor RFPs, programmatic analysis, digital workshops, media audits and capabilities assessments. Mary is the chairman of the IAB Display & Data Steering Group and an active member of the digital media industry. Mary has nearly 20 years of global media experience applying her strengths in problem solving and coordination to bring together disparate stakeholders to find creative solutions. Her background prior to Accenture was on the media owner side, latterly at Microsoft Advertising, working in client and agency sales teams, category development and commercial partnerships. Mary has a thorough understanding of the digital media landscape from strategy, technology, organisational structure and measurement.

Website: www.accenture.com | Twitter: @mary_healy

Audra Jenkins
Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer, Randstad North America

As chief diversity and inclusion officer, Audra is responsible for working with Randstad’s operating companies to further diversity strategies both internally and externally. With more than 20 years of human resources, diversity, supplier diversity, and compliance experience, Audra provides internal and external clients across the organization with guidance for effective strategies in diversity, inclusion, and compliance. Audra is the executive sponsor for Randstad’s Hire Hope program which provides career readiness training and job placement services to underserved and at-risk women, including survivors of homelessness, exploitation and trafficking. Audra holds a Master’s in Business Administration with a Human Resources concentration, and a Bachelor’s in Finance, from the University of North Carolina. A member of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM); she is also a Certified Diversity Professional (CDP), a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR), a SHRM Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) and a Six Sigma Green Belt. Audra is known for her speaking engagements at diversity conferences and has published white papers in her area of expertise.


Andi Keeling
Principal Consultant, EDIT Development – a certified women’s business enterprise

Andi is an experienced leadership development consultant with over 30 years corporate experience gained from working with large, global organisations at senior levels. She is an engaging and inspirational coach, facilitator and speaker with expertise in inclusive leadership. Andi is a highly-experienced individual with a successful operational career. She has extensive experience working in the finance sector at managing director level in business positions and interacting with board and ExCo members. She has been responsible for a multi-million pound P&L and up to several thousand people. Andi is a strong and challenging facilitator who links inclusion with engagement through using latest thinking and best practice on leveraging differences to achieve high performance.

Andi works at all levels from graduates to executive management. She has experience within a variety of industries globally where she has designed and delivered leadership programmes as well as chairing and/or facilitating cross sector meetings at board level. She is also an experienced conference facilitator, including the Institute of Directors (North West Annual Conference), Women in Recruitment Conference, Women in Media Conference and Pearl events. Her multi-sector experience across several countries equips her to work with organisations in the full realisation of the challenges facing leaders and employees today.


Nicola Klimkowski
Director, Design & Default Limited – a certified women’s business enterprise

Nicky is currently the global GDPR lead for a travel company providing services to airlines, hotels and ground transportation companies across the world. She is responsible for leading on compliance to global privacy standards and also serves a number of other clients on GDPR. Nicky has a rich history of experience in risk, compliance and the international insurance sector. Nicky has also provided strong leadership around mergers and acquisitions, internal/external audit and partner management.

Nicky is talented at helping organisations to move away from fire-fighting on compliance towards organisational maturity and prevention. She is renowned for injecting a little bit of humour along the way

Website: www.designanddefault.co.uk | Twitter: N/A

Wendy Lawson
Global Head of Advisory Services, IACCM

Wendy utilises her legal, design and information technology background and experience to collaborate with corporate, public sector, not-for-profit and IACCM (International Association for Contract & Commercial Management) members to drive IACCM advisory service projects, initiatives and research in the fields of contract design and simplification, commercial transformation, and contract management technology (including AI, NLP, contract analytics, blockchain and smart contracts). Wendy is currently also working in partnership with the British Standards Institute on the development of new standards to supplement ISO 31000 - Risk Management. She is a solicitor, a member of The Law Society, COALA, The Society of Computers and Law and an associate member of the American Bar Association.

Website: www.iaccm.com | Twitter: @iaccm

Anita Lines
Director, Design & Default – a certified women’s business enterprise

Anita is currently global data protection lead for a UK PLC with an annual turnover of £2.5 billion that delivers travel food solutions across 35 countries with a workforce of 40,000 employees. Anita and her team also provide leadership and specialist data protection consultancy services to a number of clients, via Design and Default Limited. Anita has specialised exclusively in data protection compliance for more than 11 years providing solutions to government, commercial and third sector clients including parts of the UK critical national infrastructure.

Before moving into the private commercial sector, Anita held the data protection officer role for the National Citizens Advice Service, leading 350+ separate organisations across 3,000 locations and with a workforce of 27,000 - of which many were volunteers - on all matters relating to data protection. During this time, Anita was regularly invited by the ICO to its regional and national conferences to share her team’s compliance toolkits for SMEs as an exemplar of best practice and to run data protection clinics for its delegates. Anita holds the BCS Data Protection Practitioner Certificate and is also a lead auditor for ISO 27001 and holds many supplementary qualifications including the International Diploma in Business Analysis.

Website: www.designanddefault.co.uk | Twitter: N/A

Sarah Lloyd-Hughes
Managing Director & Founder, Ginger Public Speaking – a certified women’s business enterprise

Sarah is one of the country’s most authoritative, sought after and leading public speaking experts. An award-winning coach, TEDx conference guest speaker and author of the best-selling book, ‘How to be Brilliant at Public Speaking’ (Pearson), Sarah has delivered hundreds of inspiring workshops that have seen her clients go on to deliver speeches at Parliament, Davos, and TEDx conferences; pick up prestigious awards; publish best-selling books; and become influential game changers in their own right.

She set up Ginger Public Speaking to support the transition to a new paradigm of leadership, where leaders need to ‘speak human’, rather than ‘corporate’ to inspire trust in their followers.


Ayanda Mzondeki
Founder & Managing Director, Liyema Consulting - a certified women’s business enterprise

Ayanda brings heart and innovation to her company and the industry. Liyema Consulting offers staffing solutions: placements, payroll outsourcing, contingent workforce management, talent community mapping and mobility. Operating throughout South Africa and internationally (Mozambique, Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Abu Dhabi). She believes in solutions that are people centred and impactful.

Ayanda’s mission is also to be impactful to the society at large. Through Liyema, she supports NPOs and skills development programmes that focus on sport programmes, science and maths tutoring, life skills training and access to education and school integration for refugee children. Liyema also gives free training sessions for individuals seeking employment.

Website: www.liyemahr.co.za | Twitter: @liyemaConsultn

Lynne Parker
CEO, Funny Women – a certified women’s business enterprise

Lynne is an award-winning producer who created Funny Women In 2002, now the UK’s leading community for female comedy helping women to perform, write and do business with humour. The Funny Women Awards have just completed their 16th year and Lynne has produced shows at the Edinburgh Fringe and all over the UK.

Lynne also coaches people in business and public life based on stand-up techniques to improve self-confidence and presentation skills both professionally and personally.

Website: www.funnywomen.com | Twitter: @funnywomen

Angela Peacock
CEO, PDT Global – a certified women’s business enterprise

Angie has spent the last twenty years of her career working across the global business sector, developing and supporting companies and leaders with their corporate strategies and leadership development. She remains an active coach and board advisor to businesses globally - from Asia to North America, Europe and South Africa and is a proud finalist for Global Inspiration Role Model of the Year at 2016 European Diversity Awards and she was recognised as a Freeman of the City of London in 2017.

During the last ten years, she and her teams have majored in creating the sorts of inclusive environments where everyone can be heard and excel, but most importantly in working with businesses globally to have them understand the link between the creation of inclusion, the achievement of tangible business results and the need to link it back to the people agenda.

Website: www.pdtglobal.com | Twitter: @AngiePeacockPDT

Annett Schaper
CEO, Menori Design – a certified women’s business enterprise

After a classic training in advertising, Annett soon discovered her passion for design and specialised in packaging design. She freelanced for various agencies and in 1995 joined Flurer Design in New York. She has constantly retained her passion for this inspiring city which still enriches many a project. From 1997 to 2000, she found a true “design home” at Pahnke Markenmacherei, where for her the holistic approach to brands was a living reality.

In 2000 she moved to the international network of Landor Associates, Hamburg / London, as Creative Director with major budget responsibility. From 2005 she went freelance, founding Annett Schaper Design, then in 2006 moving on to form Redpack Brand Design with two other partners and in 2008 to 2009 expanding the limited company with the addition of a branch in Bangalore, India. The wide range of international experience for both small and huge projects for clients of varying size led to the decision to found her own family company, leading to the formation of Menori Design in the summer of 2009.

Website: www.menori-design.com | Twitter: @nettiny

Geeta Sidhu-Robb
Chair, MicroLoan Foundation’s Women’s Development Board

Geeta is the Chair of MicroLoan Foundation’s Women’s Development Board. MicroLoan is a women’s empowerment and poverty alleviation organisation working in sub-Saharan Africa. The work of MicroLoan Foundation is particularly close to her heart. She not only understands what it is like to be an entrepreneur setting up a business to support her family but she is Malawian born and bred. This gives her a unique perspective on the lives of Malawian women and how much the help from MicroLoan means to them.

Geeta Sidhu-Robb is an author, inspirational speaker, and serial entrepreneur.


Yvonne Thompson
Founder and CEO, Change Innovators – a certified women’s business enterprise

Yvonne is a leading expert in the field of leadership and organisational culture. She is known for her highly progressive approach to creating positive energy and high-performance teams through her learning and development interventions that underpin long-term sustainable change. With a focus on the development of an ‘accountability culture’ that comes from the inside out she works closely with individual leaders and teams to create new energy organisations.

Yvonne has been coaching senior leaders for over 15 years and has worked at the executive level in a multitude of industries in Canada, USA and Britain. Her goal is always the same - to work with leaders so that they can make critical decisions that truly align with their highest interest, both personally and professionally.


Gill Thorpe
Chief Executive Officer, The Sourcing Team – a certified women’s business enterprise

Gill founded The Sourcing Team in 1996, and has 29 years experience as a qualified buyer - The Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply. She has a passion for ethical sourcing – with a key focus on human rights and supply chain engagement through a ‘beyond audit’ programme, working with like-minded clients to drive change in the supply chain. She is Winner of the EcoVadis SME Sustainable Leaders Award – 2017 and Winner of Successful Women in Business 2019 – Socially Minded Award.

Her industry volunteering roles include: WEConnect Europe - WBE Council to support gender diversity in the supply chain – Founder and Chair of the WBE Council since 2015. The Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply, CIPS Trustee on Council – 2009 – 2011, CIPS Fellows Committee Member since 2011 and CIPS Special Knowledge Group – Marketing and Procurement – since 2018. British Promotional Merchandise Association, Lifetime Fellow: Past Chair, President and Board Member – volunteered for 19 years. Awarded Sword of Honour and Lifetime fellowship for dedication to the promotions.


Elizabeth Vazquez
CEO and Co-Founder, WEConnect International

Elizabeth is the CEO and Co-Founder of WEConnect International, a corporate led non-profit that helps to empower women business owners to succeed in global markets. She is a world leader in women’s economic empowerment and global supplier diversity and inclusion and is the co-author of the book “Buying for Impact: How to Buy from Women and Change Our World.” She is a member of the W20, the Walmart Global Women’s Economic Empowerment Initiative’s International Advisory Council, the Procter & Gamble Supplier Diversity Advisory Council, the Global Citizen Girls’ and Women’s Committee, and was a member of the UN Secretary-General’s High Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment,. She was born in Mexico and has a Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School at Tufts University.


Tom Woodham
Partner, IBM Global Business Services

Tom is a highly experienced management consultant with a strong track record of delivering complex programmes including leading the Management Consultancy Association project of the year in 2018. His projects have a procurement and supply chain focus delivering both tangible cost savings and lasting operational performance improvement. More recently these projects have harnessed the power of AI, analytics, automation and blockchain for cognitive transformation.

Website: www.ibm.com | Twitter: @tom_woodham