Happy New Year!
Our first announcement of 2020 has been in the works for almost a year. Today, we’re revealing the first members of our Sitti Social Enterprise International Advisory Board.
The Sitti International Advisory Board will work closely with our executive team to keep track of the big picture and mission of Sitti, while addressing areas of concern and providing strategic insight towards the growth and development of our social enterprise locally and globally. Our advisory board members bring a unique and diverse set of backgrounds and expertise in business development, corporate governance and finance, corporate and brand strategy, conscious capitalism, executive leadership, innovation and entrepreneurship, marketing and communications, regional policy, risk management and strategic partnerships.
It has been over five years since the inception of Sitti. Together with several motivated women in Jerash Refugee Camp we started this social enterprise with a small batch of materials and a lot of ambition. Our team has blossomed over the years to include 10+ part-time and full-time employees. Our products are sold online and in retail spaces across four continents. We are not just soap artisans - we are an ethical lifestyle brand bringing sustainable economic development to the Palestinian refugee community through employment, education and training opportunities.
Noora and I have spent countless hours discussing how we can better equip Sitti to grow in both size and scope. We want to meet up with increasing demand and to build a more sustainable future for the business and for the refugee community that we work alongside and serve.
Ultimately, we agreed that we need people who are...frankly...more experienced than us. We need a team of advisors with more diverse and advanced skill sets and backgrounds so that we can learn from them and work alongside them to further Sitti’s mission.
“As a Palestinian who’s never stepped foot onto its land, my first material connection to it was when Sitti (my maternal grandmother) gave me olive oil soap for my sensitive skin. When I heard about Sitti Soap, I was immediately taken back to that memory and wanted to be part of the social impact that this is creating for the lives of those who have been displaced and marginalized.” - Mohamad Sawwaf, CEO of Manzil and Sitti Advisory Board Member (2020-2022)
We also agreed that we want this team of advisors to learn from each other. From the day Noora and I met with Safiah and the rest of our small, vibrant team in Jerash Camp, we have learned so much from each other personally and professionally. Our backgrounds and experiences have complimented and informed each other in ways we could not have imagined five years ago. We want to continue that tradition of learning with a group of advisors whose own positions of influence and expertise can become more informed by coming together with people from differing backgrounds over a common mission to help elevate and enhance the lives of the refugee community through education and employment.
“We're a growing start-up. It's important that we lean on industry experts to help us fill in the gaps to learn and develop our skills with the right leadership and mentorship - and gratefully, we find that each member on our IAB does just that. Each Advisory Board member offers a unique skill and characteristic that compliments the work of Sitti as a social enterprise, as they commit to assist us through guidance, support, and professional advice in the years to come.” - Noora Sharrab, CEO and co-founder of Sitti
Please join us in welcoming the 2020-2022 Sitti Social Enterprise International Advisory Board Members:
Samer Abdelnour - Lecturer in Prosperity, Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the Institute for Global Prosperity, University College London; focuses on social enterprise and humanitarian technology interventions in the contexts of Sudan and Southern Sudan. He also served on the board of advisors of the Restart Network, a Rotterdam-based social enterprise providing coding training to refugees, and Al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network, a think tank he co-founded.
Chelsea Brown- CEO and Founder of Millie, Inc. a company that offers women transformative experiences through a speaker series, Millie Speaks, and female-focused travel, Millie Travels; VP of Development & Operations at Clarity Management Group.
Karen Linehan Mroz- Member of the East West Institute Board of Directors and Chairwoman of the Executive Committee of LIFE@Elon; formerly President of the Middle East Children’s Institute and founding director of Friends of UNRWA-USA.
Mohamad Sawwaf- Cofounder and CEO of Manzil, he is one of the leading authorities on Islamic Finance in Canada and regularly consults for the Dubai and Abu Dhabi governments on Islamic finance.
Angela Wallace- A leading consultant in the WeWork Labs network and mentor to ethical consumer brands on social impact and sustainability; her podcast and training program, Launch Conscious, addresses issues of company culture, leadership, profit, purpose, social impact and sustainability for startups.
Sudduf Wyne- Founder of the Muslim Entrepreneurship Association, she is a Muslim retail expert, intential entrepreneurial business coach and mentor to over 100 brands, many of which are female-owned.