SMITA SUCHDE GRUETTER
EMBA – Executive Management Degree – IMD, Lausanne, Switzerland
BA in Economics, Political Science and Law (India)
Diploma in Fashion Design – Parsons School of Fashion – NYC
Languages spoken: English, German, Hindi, Gujarati, Marathi.
As a young girl, growing up in India, Smita was influenced by her mother, HEMLATA, an ardent believer in the power of quality education, on whom the organisation is named.
Over two decades of active philanthropy in India have given Smita an in-depth understanding on how quality education along with sustainable support can impact the lives of the most vulnerable in India, especially young girls. She is committed to creating opportunities for this vulnerable group, to break their cycles of inter-generational poverty, to enjoy a life of dignity and purpose and to act as changemakers in their communities.
Smita’s professional education and her experience as a serial entrepreneur reflects in her structured, collaborative and impact-oriented approach to philanthropy. Her travels across India to meet and engage with local communities and to identify, evaluate and connect one on one with beneficiaries, has led her to create the HEMLATA 100 or H100, a social innovation project.
MRS MEERA ISAACS
H100 Honorary Advisor India
Mrs. Meera Isaacs, M.A.; B.Ed; has been associated with The Cathedral & John Connon School for the past 41 years out of which 22 years have been spent as Head of the School and the first female Principal of this 158 year old institution.
During her tenure as Principal, she introduced the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme, started the Pre-primary Section of the Cathedral School and created the Advanced Placement Programme.
“In very simple terms my credo as an educationist is to put the child as the focus of all educational activities so that she/he may grow into an assured and confident person who is able to evolve strategies and skills to deal with the ever-changing environment. If they are able to do this, it naturally follows that the joy of life will be theirs.”
For her work in the field of education, Ms. Isaacs has been a recipient of several awards over the years. Here we list just a few:
- Recipient of the prestigious Asia One Black Swan Women
- Empowerment Award
- Recipient of the Women Achievers Award
- Received the Women of Excellence Award
- Received the Eminent Educationalist Award
- Recipient of the National Award for Teachers under the Ministry of
- Higher Education, Government of India
As an Honorary Advisor to HEMLATA, Ms. Isaacs’s immense knowledge with students, schools and educational bodies supports HEMLATA in its journey to identify the right student, as a Scholar of the H100 family.
H100 Honorary Advisor
As Head of Sustainability at IMD Business School, she shows how executive education can foster responsible leadership that contributes to positive impact.Working with senior executives in rapidly changing markets in Asia and Europe for more than 20 years, Natalia Olynec brings a global perspective to sustainability, reputation management, and stakeholder engagement. She enables organizations to demonstrate their values and manage their organizations with integrity. Before joining IMD, Natalia was Global Head of Sustainability at Damco, and Adjunct Professor of Sustainability at SP Jain School of Global Management. She has collaborated in global teams to increase supply chain transparency and accountability in areas such as responsible procurement, energy efficiency, CSR, and human rights.
Her consulting work on the crossroads of philanthropy and investment developed bottom-of-the-pyramid business models to contribute to both social and financial bottom lines. As a former journalist for Bloomberg News, she leverages her strong communication skills to influence change through consulting, publishing, education, and curriculum design.
Project Lead H100 Scholarships
Darija is a HR professional with a very diverse background. Having lived in Germany, Croatia & Asia, before settling in Switzerland, Darija finds herself at home in the world.
With over 20 years of work experience in different countries & industries and as an Expert in the field of Organizational Culture, Leadership and Change, Darija is the CHRO at Swiss Vortex, a group of companies dealing in medical devices.
As the mother of a young girl, Darija is very aware of raising her daughter to be a strong woman of the future. Darija is a strong believer and supporter of HEMLATA and its core values and passionate about helping girls become strong and persuasive women in the world.
Education: MA Leading Innovation and Change from the University St. John, York UK
Languages: English, German, Croatian, French, Urdu/Hindi, Pashto
SINJA RÜBERG WIEDERSEINER
Project Lead H100 Life-skills
Sinja is the owner and Managing Director of Levista GmbH, a coaching practice in Zurich, and development and provider of the product “Fox Dynamics” for teams. In the coaching program at the University of St. Gallen, Sinja conducts lectures in the field of self-leadership, resilience and health, conflict resolution and target-oriented communication. She believes in HEMLATA’s vision of Life Skills and coaching as being important tools and is delighted to work with HEMLATA to build these non-cognitive skills into the H100Intiative.
Education: Coach / Consultant IBP- IBP Institue Winterthur, Doctor of Law – Magna cum Laude – University of Konstanz, Psychoneuroimmunology, Nürnberg-Germany,
Languages: German, English
Project Lead H100 Academy
Helia is an accomplished C-Level executive bringing more than 27 years of experience with leading corporations in the ICT industry, in Switzerland and Europe, successfully spearheading operations in multicultural and cross-functional large organisations and startups. A passionate leader with an excellent track-record in Strategy, Digital Transformation, Customer Service, Sales & Retail and Change Management, she believes HEMLATA has the power to mobilize women’s education landscape, creating sustainable impact in both countries, Switzerland and India.
Education: MBA from the University of Fribourg, Switzerland and a Master’s in Computer Science & Electrical Engineering from the University of Lisbon, Portugal
Languages spoken: Portuguese, French, German and English
Monique has been with HEMLATA Switzerland, since HEMLATA launched in Switzerland, in 2004.
With a history in the airline business, and now retired from the KLM Airlines Sales Team, travelling and experiencing different cultures has always been a big part of her life and her journeys have led her to several visits in India.
Monique understands the challenges in this fascinating country and the importance of helping to make a difference in a young women’s life and this is why she continues to play an active role as a HEMLATA Team member.
Languages spoken: German, English, French, Italian
Co- Project Lead, India
Diksha is currently working as an Investment Professional at Accel, a global venture capital firm, where she focuses on early-stage cross border tech investments in India and the US. Prior to Accel, she worked at L.E.K. Consulting.
Having worked at an NGO throughout college, Diksha saw the impact of education on lives of under-privileged girls and women at the grass root level. She strongly resonates with HEMLATA’s mission and wishes to create sustainable impact through the H100 impact initiative.
Diksha focuses on impact, growth and fundraising for HEMLATA’s H100 Impact initiative.
Education: BA Economics (Honors) from Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University
Langauges spoken: English, Hindi, Gujarati, Marwadi
Co- Project Lead, India
Unni is currently working as an Investment Professional at Omidyar Network India, an impact investment firm, where he focuses on early-stage companies in education, financial inclusion and emerging technologies impacting the lower income and lower-middle income population. Prior to this, he worked at L.E.K., consulting.
Unni is aware of the importance of education in moulding the future of talented young Indians girls, believing in HEMLATA’s H100 Impact to generate significant impact for the scholars and their communities.
Unni focuses on impact evaluation, community and fundraising for HEMLATA’s H100 Impact initiative.
Education: BTech in Mechanical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay
Langauges spoken: English, Hindi, Malayalam, French
Podcast & Blogs
Helena is a Swiss, American Millennial who grew up in France and now lives in Zurich. As a Portfolio Manager at Siemens, Helena actively drives the company’s digital & cultural transformation. In her free time she compliments her passion for business by reflecting on life experiences through writing, storytelling, and podcasting. Given her multi-cultural background and having enjoyed top class, Swiss education and experienced different cultures through travel, she is aware of the importance of enabling young, female leaders through the power of education. Helena finds deep fulfillment in working towards Hemlata’s vision to pay the way forward for the girls in India to make life on earth more equal, day by day and girl by girl.
Education: MSc Business Administration, Strategic Marketing at ZHAW Winterthur, BSc Business Administration, Major International Management at FHS St. Gallen
Languages spoken: English, French, German
Website and Design
Jaromir supports HEMLATA with the design, graphic and technical details on the website, for print and across all presentations. He is the Co-Founder of appwork, an agency that works with software and app development. From designing logos, imagery and typography, from scribbles to wireframes, mockups and prototypes to final screen design, Jaromir feels at home in all disciplines and his support at HEMLATA keeps up unto date on all fronts.
Being the father of a young girl himself, Jaromir, believe and whole-heartedly supports the cause for gender equality for girls.
Languages spoken: English, German