Faith is responsible for managing and providing program management support across a portfolio of Education and Learning projects and initiatives focusing on secondary and higher education systems and youth leadership development at the Foundation. Faith has a certificate in Data Science from Harvard University and was instrumental in the development of an Education Information Management System (EMIS) for the Foundation’s Scholars Program. Prior to joining the Foundation, Faith worked at Essential Skills Ontario (ESO) where he was responsible for tracking, manipulating and analyzing high-quality data suitable for strategic and operational support, planning, and new research initiatives and policy development. He holds a Master of Economics degree from the University of Ottawa in Canada, and a Bachelor of Economics degree from the American University of Nigeria.
Mari has been actively involved in FinTech and Blockchain technologies since 2013, advising startups including the SFU Bitcoin club. As an early adopter, she highlighted the potential of cryptocurrency and blockchain to organizations such as the Deloitte Innovation Council in Canada at a time when the firm still considered it an outlier technology. Mari was the architect and lead the development of a distributed organizational strategic design, execution and performance management platform openaxyz deployed by Barclays and a number of other enterprises internationally which earned her a nomination as MaRs/RIC Innovation Idol in Ontario in 2012.
Maame Alice Yelber Sai
Alice is passionate about connecting African women in the Diaspora and on the continent. A wife and mother of three young children, Maame has worked and volunteered with several organizations such as Global Fund for Women, African Women’s Development Fund, Global Women’s Leadership Network, UNICEF-Ghana and World Savvy. Maame has dedicated herself to supporting social justice efforts, using her experience in grant-making, philanthropy, women’s rights, leadership and development in Sub-Saharan Africa and the Diaspora
Prior to joining McLarty Associates, Mr. Pence served as a Director for the Whitaker Group, where he advised multinational companies on their strategies in over 20 markets throughout sub-Saharan Africa. He has written extensively on doing business in frontier markets in outlets including Financial Times, New York Times, Reuters, CNN and the National Interest. He was recognized by Diplomatic Courier as a Top 99 Foreign Policy Leader and was selected by the Global Public Policy Institute as a Global Governance 2022 Fellow.Mr. Pence is also the founder of the software start-up Upstream Analytics and the Africa Expert Network (AXN). He is on the boards of the Africa Leadership Network, Market Atlas and the Pan-African Network.
Michael is the director of Engineering at Arbutus Medical. Michael brings medical device design, manufacturing, and project management experience from his time at Verathon Medical, Vancouver Coastal Health, and Health & Sherwood. He worked in the mining and manufacturing industry before shifting to medical devices and recently pursuing an MEng in Biomedical Engineering. At Arbutus, he led our regulatory efforts to achieve ISO 13485 quality certification, as well as FDA, Health Canada, and CE submissions.
Dr Thomas Laryea
Dr. Laryea is a recognized international law expert, with a specialty in Africa-related investment and government relations matters and sovereign debt restructuring. His practice tends to involve the representation of investors and African governments in their international finance and development dealings. While Dr. Laryea has a special interest in Africa, his experience is truly global. Prior to Cooke Robotham, Dr.Laryea was Assistant General Counsel at the International Monetary Fund, responsible for the IMF’s legal relations in finance and economic surveillance with each of its then 187 member countries.
Current student at Harvard and is a former Allan Gary Orbis Fellow. He currently serves as CEO of FNS Energy an award-winning Level 3 B-BBEE South African energy service company based at the Climate Innovation Center in Pretoria. It offers a broad range of energy efficiency tools for residential, commercial and utility-scale applications and turnkey solutions for integrated energy production with renewable generation units.
Marie supports the Centre for Impact Investing’s Venture Services activities, including SVX and Impact8, and is leading the development of the ImpactLink Mentorship program. Marie has a background supporting entrepreneurs with both program-implementing and grant-making organizations. With UNRWA in Palestine and MEDA in Tanzania, Marie supported impact assessment and project operations. She most recently worked at The MasterCard Foundation on the Economic Opportunities for Youth portfolio, doing research and on new initiative development.
Frederick Munawa is a Blockchain Consultant and host of the 5-star-rated podcast – Blockchain Innovation – one of the top Blockchain and Cryptocurrency podcasts in the world. He graduated with a Finance degree and an MBA from Southern Illinois University. Prior to his work in the Blockchain space, he worked at four of the world’s largest financial institutions, and was at one time responsible for over 20 billion dollars in client assets at the Royal Bank of Canada. Frederick is a lifelong scholar and is currently pursuing a Master of Laws degree, specializing in Innovation and Technology at the University of Toronto.
Akin Sawyerr is the Managing Director of Feleman Limited, an impact investment and advisory firm that is focused on fin-tech across Africa. Feleman has investments and provides advice to companies in the payments, lending, investment, and remittance space. He is also the Founder of Market Atlas, a market information technology company that provides market and investment research, and risk management for the underserved
Vasilii is a PhD Candidate in Chemical & Biological Engineering UBC working on smart polymers. He is a graduate of UBC GMCA mini-MBA program and a winner of 2016 GMCA business case competition. He’s also chaired a conference and advised a UBC student design team. In 2016-2017 he co-founded his company Tesseract Technologies treating brain aneurysms with a novel material. The team won medals in a local start-up competition and won a place in the e [at] UBC Lean Launch Pad program.
A hi-tech generalist with experience in angel investment, business modelling and government funding for technology companies. Most of his work has been in the software industry, but he has also worked on electronic hardware, biomedical devices, and optical systems. His focus is on helping early stage technology companies raise money from private investors. He does this through his work at Open Angel Canada and as an angel investor. He occasionally sits on boards. He was also interested in the educational and entrepreneurial aspects of international development. He is currently working with a fintech start-up in Uganda and hope to explain his work and investments into other parts of Africa.