Location: Kolkata, India
Village Capital Partner: Ikure Techsoft
Minh Vo grew up in Vietnam and, during high-school, traveled and volunteered in Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia and China before entering the U.S for college. His first successful entrepreneurial experience was starting an annual public campaign advocating for and providing direct provisions for abandoned children in his home city (Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam) while pursuing a high-school education in Singapore. His second was taking a gap year before college to sustain it; his third (and current) is starting a Life Skill and Character Development Program for young orphans in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Now, he is a rising College Senior at Swarthmore College, having recently developed a deep interest in impact investing since his participation in Net Impact Conference 2012.
Location: Nairobi, Kenya
Village Capital Partner: Growth Africa
Michelle is an experienced project manager and business analyst in the international financial markets industry. She wishes to harness her private sector experience for the benefit of the impact-investing sector. Michelle believes that a business must incorporate quantitative ‘social value’ as the norm and that coupled with the use of social innovation, hopes to overcome the challenges facing ‘bottom of the pyramid’ consumers and separately also tackle the lack of effective funding models. Most recently, as a member of the Young Professional Network board for Women’s World Banking, Michelle has been an active, positive ambassador and advocate for the benefits of microfinance through the organization of quarterly education and social events, whilst also engaging in continual learning. Michelle is originally from Sydney, Australia however has been fortunate enough to work, live and study in Singapore, London and New York. Michelle has a graduate degree in Finance and Accounting from the University of Sydney and currently resides in New York.
Location: Sao Paolo, Brazil
Village Capital Partner: Pipa
A San Francisco Bay Area native, Arianne Renee Dilts is an environmental researcher with extensive international and multi-cultural experience and a commitment to facilitating sustainable development through localized solutions. She graduated from Franklin College in Switzerland in 2010 with a B.A. in Environmental Studies, and she is now pursuing a joint-program degree for an M.A. in International Environmental Policy and an MBA in International Business Administration at the Monterey Institute of International Studies. During her years abroad, Arianne visited over 20 countries across the globe, conducting studies in Central and South America, Asia, the Middle East, and Europe. Her professional portfolio includes a range of research, volunteer and practical experience opportunities that have engaged her at different organizational levels: from multi-national institutions like UNESCO Iraq, to local community-led non-profits like the Bay Islands Conservation Association in Honduras and the Mangrove Association in El Salvador. Her studies and experiences have allowed her to analyze best practices of sustainability and, most recently, explore the potential role of business in providing a solution for sustainability and development. In addition to a passion for learning foreign languages, Arianne enjoys playing the piano, exploring cultural dance forms, solving logic puzzles, and spending time outdoors.
Village Capital Partner: First Cut
Since graduating from Middlebury College in 2010, Mallory has worked as an associate with a grant-making foundation, served on the board of directors of a community organization, and worked as an internal consultant for a national nonprofit. These experiences have led her to believe that the best way to positively impact a community is through empowered leadership. For example, the foundation she worked for allocated grants to regional councils, comprised of leaders from that region of the state of Colorado, for them to decide which organizations from their communities should receive funding. Mallory facilitated grant-making decisions for the council from the Northeast region of Colorado and helped it launch a project that gave seed funding to local entrepreneurs with the best business plans. In its first year, the program allowed ten businesses to open that are still succeeding today and has solidified her belief in social investment. She grew up in Colorado and was currently working in Denver, though she has spent a considerable amount of time abroad. In high school, she studied in Costa Rica, Ireland, and Spain. While at Middlebury, she double-majored in history and Spanish and had the opportunity to study in Chile. While there, she assisted an educational government organization in promoting their mission as their social media coordinator. This experience gave her a unique insight into working in the public sector abroad and the many challenges the sector faces. Mallory also had the opportunity to visit neighboring countries of Peru, Bolivia, and Argentina. She enjoyed the challenge of taking on a new language, navigating cultural expectations, and embracing the nuances of everyday life in a foreign country. She learned how she reacts to adversity, how to connect with people from a different background, and how to understand and accept an outside perspective of her own culture.
Location: Redwood City, CA (Remote)
Village Capital Partner: The Civic Accelerator and Chilton Capital
Kate is a business consultant and entrepreneur. For the past 14 years, she has worked with a variety of organizations — from sole proprietorships to major nonprofit medical institutions — developing organizational strategy, providing financial oversight, raising funds, and conveying value through compelling communications. With a BS in Business Administration from American University, and specializations in finance, international economics and international development, she has had a lifelong desire to work at the intersection of business and public good. Her community involvements include time on the board of the Los Angeles Junior Chamber of Commerce, as chair of the LAJCC Foundation, and she is currently serving as a court-appointed special advocate (CASA) for Santa Clara County foster youth. In October/November 2009, she volunteered in Ghana with Women in Progress, a grassroots micro-business development organization. Throughout 2010-2011, she and her husband traveled full-time, residing for two-plus months each in Hawaii, New Zealand, Australia and Thailand, while she simultaneously developed and launched a training program to help solopreneurs envision and bring to life their ideal businesses. In her spare time, she enjoys traveling (24 countries and counting!), hiking and creative outlets, particularly photography and painting.
Location: Boulder, CO/ Remote
Village Capital Placement Partner: Campbell Law Group
Marsha is a veteran business writer building a CSR consultancy. Her first career was in journalism, based in Asia. Following this, Marsha’s second career was in corporate/government communications. Currently, she works in fine tuning CSR initiatives to be based on long-term investment models.
Location: San Francisco, CA
Village Capital Partner: The Hub San Francisco
Saeid is the first of his family born in the United States. After the Iranian Revolution and Iran-Iraq war, his parents came to the United States with $700. They took courses at a community college to move out of working three minimum wage jobs to find a job as an accountant or as a cab driver. Since he grew up in extreme poverty conditions, most of his tangible skills until just recently have been learned outside the classroom. When his parents divorced 4 years ago, he managed and continue to manage their financial assets like tax returns, income statements, real estate management, etc and legal obligations. Not only has he learned excellent management and financial skills, but he has become even more passionate about social enterprise as a result and have built character and leadership through his life’s journey. Finally, his time at Virginia Tech and then at the University of Virginia have combined to give him the academic background necessary to put his skills in the appropriate context.
Location: San Francisco, CA
Village Capital Partner: Lean Impact
Sharon is from Uganda (“the pearl of Africa”, as named by Winston Churchill). She has lived in Kenya, Congo- Brazzaville, Zimbabwe and Swaziland and visited a number of African countries. Sharon enjoys traveling and particularly enjoy different kinds of music and dance. She has a keen interest in global affairs and development particularly in relation to trade and investment. She received her bachelors in International Studies and Transnational Studies from Westminster College, Fulton- MO. She also minored in International Relations.
Location: Sri Lanka
Village Capital Partner: VilCap Sri Lanka
Xiaou Zhu is a native of Bejing, China. She spent time at a summer camp doing farming work in rural China. She studied South Asia Studies in China and Sri Lanka. She spent four years studying Sinhalese (one of the official language in Sri Lanka). She had a strong exposure to South Asian cultures. She worked in China Radio International Sinhalese service as a translator. She helped to organized many activities in Sri Lanka Embassy. Also, she served as an interpreter for Indian poets and writers.
Location: Shanghai, China
Village Capital Partner: Transist and Shell Foundation
Logan is a social entrepreneur committed to finding solutions to global inequalities by working across civic and private sectors. In his management consulting experience he worked with high-wealth individuals to create social enterprises, co-founded a thought leader conference for social innovation at Brigham Young University, and orchestrated business creation and donation to charities. In the civic sector he provided program evaluation for women’s co-ops at the bottom of the pyramid in rural villages in Mexico, collaborated with nonprofit executives through Guidestar to improve transparency and accountability in the nonprofit sector and won a grant for a Utah County’s mentoring program, increasing their budget and extending the life and reach of a moribund program. Logan graduated from Brigham Young University in Sociology and Nonprofit Management. He is currently working in an urban elementary school in San Antonio, Texas as a Teach For America corps member. As a member of his campus leadership team he formed a committee to build solutions—to create college bound graduates— connecting community and business to the talented student body.
Location: Bogota, Colombia
Village Capital Partner: The Hub Bogota
Therese is a graduating senior at the University of Virginia. She is majoring in Commerce with concentrations in Finance and Information Technology. She is passionate about people, technology, and the power of innovation to tackle social problems. Through several internships, she has gained exposure to companies at all stages from early-stage start-up to mature, as well as across numerous industries including biotechnology, education, engineering and technology, and consulting. She studied abroad in Switzerland where she completed a program of graduate and undergraduate classes in Finance, IT and Global Business. She is passionate about social entrepreneurship, and has been involved in a UVA organization called SEED, which provides free consulting to social enterprise and nonprofit clients around the world.
Location: Nairobi, Kenya
Village Capital Partner: Growth Africa
Jeff is a first year student at The Paul Merage School of Business focusing on strategy and development. Prior to returning to business school he spent two years abroad with the Peace Corps in Albania. Jeff worked in a rural town and did everything from youth development to grant-writing. Since his first trip outside the US (to India) he has caught the travel bug, but it’s focused more on understanding different lifestyles more than being a tourist. Since then he’s been all over eastern Europe and to Rwanda. In essence he is looking to make a positive impact in deserving people’s lives.
Village Capital Partner: The Hub Burma
Jon Keescker is currently a graduate student at the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan. He has a professional background in nonprofit advocacy, radio journalism and community organizing. Between 2007-2010 Jon worked in Washington D.C. as a lobbyist, organizer, and manager for a national advocacy organization focused on food sustainability and infrastructure funding. His international travel experiences spans more than 50 countries, and in 2011 he spent a year backpacking overland from Europe to China to better understand current affairs in some of the world’s most dynamic regions. He has a B.A. in Philosophy from Central Michigan University and is currently pursuing his Master of Public Policy with a focus in international trade and development in Southeast Asia.
Location: Bangalore, India
Village Capital Partner: Impact Edge Accelerator
Natalie is entering her third semester in the MPA program at MIIS, focusing her attention on creative intersections between the public and private sectors to foster sustainable development. After studying Linguistics at UC Santa Cruz, she worked at a foundation supporting social and environmental justice in NYC, Boston, and Providence, and land conservation in the Southeastern US. There, she was exposed to the good work of hundreds of grassroots organizations, and was inspired to join in their momentum. After a brief hiatus managing a small hostel on the California coast, teaching high school in Lyon, France, and leading francophone canoe trips in the wilds of northern Minnesota, Natalie is energized to be at MIIS, where she volunteers for a social entrepreneur in Brazil, teaches French with BUILD, and learns from the diverse experiences of fellow students.
Location: Washington, D.C.
Village Capital Partner: Impact Accelerator
A native of Maryland, who now resides in Virginia, Heather is a professional accountant who longs to see more of the world. She imagines it’s her mother’s British roots that have led her to explore from trekking in Nepal to travels around North and Central America and Europe. Her academic background focuses on business with degrees from a Canadian university and two from Cornell University.