Azkua European Women's Leadership Summit

Topic: Gentle Ambition
When: Friday, 26th November 2021 – 09.00 till 17.00
Where: Online
A recent article by The Wall Street Journal writes ”burned out and restless from the pandemic, women redefine their career ambitions. A comprehensive new study by McKinsey and Lean In shows how stressed and exhausted many professional women are. And many of them are rethinking what they want from their work lives.”

But how do we redefine out career ambitions and create the life and career of our dreams?

Join us for our upcoming online summit and find out

Topics & Panel Discussions

Host Keynotes
: Women and ambition over time, and how to remain ambitious without burning ourselves out

Keynote Niamh: A personal account of what happens when we shift from ”doing it all” to ”doing what matters”

Panel Discussion:  How women are using gentle ambition to lead change across industries

Keynote Dorothy: How to end the prove it again dynamic and become less efficient, yet more effective

Panel Discussion:  Is Gentle Ambition possible in Tech?

Panel Discussion:  How can we sustain ourselves in a 24/7 culture?

Our Speakers

Dovile Corrigan, Azkua Strengths Expert
Corporate background in sales, account and relationship management. Strengths coach. Supports professionals to identify their true strengths to achieve alignment between strengths, projects and career development. Knows that it’s not only about developing skills and competence, but also about learning to boost one’s energy. Mum of two kids. Seasoned expat understanding the challenges of the international community.

Azkua Strengths Expert
Manuela Damant, Azkua Women's Leadership Expert
10 years as Underwriter and Risk & Insurance Advisor at Shell International. Escaped the city to become a coach in 2004. Creator Connector. Enthusiastic, optimistic, energetic. Believes in the good in everyone and everything. Encourages women embrace their innate leadership power to create a better world. Wife, mother of three. Zurich, London, Melbourne, The Hague. Book that changed her life trajectory at 25 Paolo Coehlo’s “The Alchemist”.

Azkua Women’s Leadership Expert
Dorothy Grandia
Dorothy Grandia is a specialist in leadership and influence communication in progression from management to leadership. She is the Associate Director of Programming at the Erasmus Centre for Women and Organisations/Rotterdam School of Management, where she has contributed to the development and delivery of gender-balanced leadership programming since its inception in 2014. She is also an executive coach in leadership communication at INSEAD since 2016 and for several years coached expat managers in cross-cultural communication at both Unilever and Heineken.

Since 2005, she has helped clients working primarily in STEM industry contexts to recognize and exploit the difference between objective and subjective decision-making in their communication strategy. With that awareness, her clients then learn to increase their influence by synthesizing complex information into clear, engaging, and convincing messages delivered in a persuasive manner. Her interest in communication as a tool of influence on business and policy decision-making evolved out of early career experience in the United States as a legislative aide in the political system of the State of Texas. After leaving politics, she graduated with an MM in Vocal Performance from the New School University/Mannes College of Music and performed as a professional operatic soprano for many years in both the EU and the US. She also holds a BA in Asian Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. Grandia is originally from the US and is a naturalized Dutch citizen who has lived in Rotterdam since 1997.

Women in Energy Leadership Advocate, Associate Director ECWO (Erasmus Centre for Women and Organisations)
Niamh Gunn
Niamh is a social entrepreneur, lawyer, business thought leader and mum of four, curious about new ways of leading and living. With over 20+ years of experience in leading global initiatives making the world a kinder place.

Niamh loves to speak the truth (real) and believes the truth sets us free. It is what crippled her in the past and blocked her from reaching her full potential and being fully free and happy.

She lives on the South of the Island of Ireland but support leaders, individuals across Ireland and the globe. And she especially loves to support individuals, leaders and entrepreneurs who are committed to create a better world and work place, in developing conscious ways of working and organisations.

CEO The Dialogue Code
Daria Nashat
Daria Nashat is the co-founder of ‘Women in Politics’ and speaker and facilitator on leadership for new times, power narratives, and resilience. She is a certified Trauma Awareness and Resilience (STAR) trainer, co-founder of the Women’s Sanctuary Circle experience, and a Steering Committee member of Women in International Security (WIIS) Brussels. Prior to founding her own business, she worked for 15+ years in the field of peacebuilding, refugee return and community building.

Co-Founder Of Women In Politics
Allyson Kukel
Allyson Kukel is the Founder of Rooted in Calm, where she helps clients cultivate a life or work environment they are proud of, that is in sync with their values and is of course Rooted in Calm. Through her journey, she realized how important it was to create a quiet space of calm, for reflection and where she learned to be present. This is her root, her profound appreciation for the present allows her to live consciously in a way that is authentically her. This is precisely what she helps her clients achieve through simple strategies that give way to consciousness, allowing them to stop hitting life’s snooze button.

Finding balance and comfort in being multifaceted means that she is proud to also lead Airline Engagement for the Halldale Group which specializes in aviation training. In her consulting work, she liaises with airlines and the industry to best address how to tackle the challenges the industry faces. She is also the product owner of a collaborative effort between the Halldale Group and the ATPG, a sub-group of the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), which is currently striving towards its Big Data MVP.

Allyson holds a Bachelors in Business Administration from the University of Lincoln, is a certified NLP Master Practitioner with several coaching certifications, and is a Member of the Royal Aeronautical Society. She grew up in California and has lived in several countries across three continents, working with a large swath of the world, she now resides in the Netherlands. She is adventurous, curious, passionate about humanity and the climate.

Passionate AvProfessional, helping driven professionals find work life balance
Karla Wellington
Karla is the Health & Wellbeing Manager at Philips, a leading health technology company focused on improving lives through meaningful innovation. Her mission for wellbeing at Philips is to create a culture that embraces different ideas, appreciates individual purpose and empowers people to be the best version of themselves. Karla brings to this role twelve years experience in sales & marketing for a global leader in the medical device industry. Her background is in exercise science with further qualifications in Physiotherapy and Clinical Pilates. At Philips she combines her experience as a healthcare professional with project and change management skills to deliver numerous holistic programs, recently focussing on challenging stigmas surrounding mental health and menopause.

Health & Wellbeing Manager at Philips
Maxim Cramer
Maxim Cramer is on a mission to double the number of female founded tech businesses worldwide.
Maxim Cramer is the CEO of MENNENIA.
Repeatedly praised for her ability to simplify technology, flattening communications barriers between technical teams and visionaries,
she fast-tracks women launching and scaling their startups.
Maxim has worked as a principal design technologist, technical consultant, and mobile software engineer. She was integral to the team that developed Swiftkey, a keyboard app that saw over a million downloads on its first day and whose success was profiled in the
New York Times (Microsoft has since acquired the app). She has also worked for Artsy (an app featured in Apple retail stores globally), and Hewlett-Packard.
As founder of MENNENIA, Maxim empowers female founders to leverage technology and make their biggest impact yet.

Maxim has spoken all over the world to audiences small and large. She speaks candidly, enthusiastically, and receives incredible audience feedback, often mobbed afterwards!

Topics include:
• Creating great tech products and startups: strategy, design, and development
• Female founders in technology and the impact on our global economy
• TechLiteracy™ — making technology as simple as everyday English

Coach & Consultant to Women Entrepreneurs in Technology
Cristina Muntean
Cristina Muntean is an executive consultant, trainer, mentor and coach who specializes in strategic communications, personal branding and in emotional and systemic intelligence for leadership. A former journalist, she founded Media Education CEE, a communications and people development agency in Prague in May 2010. Her clients are executive level managers and entrepreneurs with Top100 companies in the Czech Republic and in Central, Eastern and Southern Europe. Cristina provides services in English, Czech, French and Romanian, her mother tongue.

Thought leadership partner for leaders and future leaders in Europe
Rebecca Olschner-Wood
Rebecca Olschner-Wood is Deputy Director of Strategic Partnerships at the Fund for Global Human Rights. Prior to joining the Fund, Rebecca was the Executive Director of AdvocAid, a civil society organisation working with women and girls in contact with the law in Sierra Leone. She also spent seven years at BBC Media Action, including five years in Sierra Leone managing a complex portfolio of media development and communications for development projects. Rebecca began her career at Crisis Action, in London and then Nairobi, coordinating coalitions of organisations working together to protect civilians from armed conflict. She is currently a Trustee of Womankind Worldwide, a feminist organisation working in solidarity and partnership with women’s rights organisations around the world. Rebecca is currently based in Oxford.

Deputy Director of Strategic Partnerships at The Fund for Global Human Rights
Vivian Acquah

As an inclusive Workplace Wellness Advocate, Vivian Acquah advises managers on how to keep their team members engaged, energized, and safe in a sustainable manner.

Vivian Acquah is making topics related to workplace wellness & DEI accessible to everyone. She provides people with the right tools, at the right time, to embrace inclusive changes. Vivian motivates people to think consciously and inspires them to take action.

Gentle Ambition: To me, this means mindfully amplifying your career with the support of a mentor or a coach.

Inclusive Workplace Wellness Advocate, DEI Consultant, Trainer, Strategist, Keynote Speaker
Clair Moore

After six years within the Telecom and IT industry were I development skills in project management, new development and the management of diverse and international teams I made a switch to Education. Within diverse international education programmes I have been bought my love for technology and how it can be used to solve problems to students and staff. Highly motivated with a high level of professionalise who can successfully communicate complex ideas, concepts and topics in an understandable way to students and staff members from diverse backgrounds. Experience in all aspects of educational management who strives to empower her team and match their strengths with the tasks at hand. Looks for sustainable solutions to the problems at hand. A developer who looks for the potential in a team or individual and supports their growth potential. Everyone has a gift to bring, it is about shinning a light on it. Wife, mother of two, family (aboard), friend, Dublin, The Hague, Podcast enthusiast, recommend listening to either of Brene Browns podcasts.

Programme Director International Law at The Hague University of Applied Sciences
Natasa Jovanovic
Natasa Jovanovic is a product leader passionate about building products that have a positive impact on people’s lives on a large scale.  In her 20-year career in tech, Natasa has held various positions in the fields of Software Engineering, User Experience Design and Product Management. She holds a PhD degree in Artificial Intelligence and Machine learning and a BSc degree in Computer Science. Natasa is currently working as a Director Product Management at EVBox, on the mission to help build a future where everyday transport is emission-free and sustained by a green charging stations infrastructure.

Director Product Management at EVBox
Elise Kuurstra

Elise Kuurstra is Deputy Executive Director at the European Association for International Education (EAIE), a professional association serving individuals actively involved in the internationalisation of their universities. Elise spends the majority of her time driving innovation, change, and growth, and mobilising staff and volunteer to translate strategy into results.  Prior to her current role, she set up and scaled the EAIE’s marketing & communications team. Originally from Canada, Elise is passionate about leadership and building healthy, supportive communities.

Deputy Executive Director at the European Association for International Education (EAIE)

Interested to hear more from AZKUA?


Zoom opens at 09.00
Official start: 09.30
Lunch: 12.00
Start afternoon: 13.15
Close event: 17.00

Count me in!

Investment: Tickets start from Euro 10.00 and are donation based. All profits will go to charity.

Azkua European Women's Leadership Summit starts in








Namita Taneja Krul
Namita Taneja Krul, is the Founder of Meri Body B.V., an organization working towards educating semi-literate adolescents and young women in rural and semi-urban communities in India on female body literacy including the monthly cycle. She profoundly believes that educating women on sexual and reproductive healthcare will improve their livelihood, uplift their self-confidence and help them to execute the ‘Freedom of Choice’. Meri Body works directly with adolescents and students through partnerships at the local areas.

Namita, has been involved in groundbreaking entrepreneurial work with social impact since 2010 and is also employed as a Financial Analyst at one of the largest Triple A-banks in The Netherlands. Her background and cultural knowledge of both the Eastern and Western worlds, (on the one hand, genetic, and on the other hand, environmental,) enables her to produce concrete results as a change maker. Her drive and compassion have served well to motivate others to join hands with her and to contribute to the cause of women’s empowerment.

Our Charity

Meri Body is an organization working towards educating semi-literate adolescents and young women in rural and semi-urban communities in India on female body literacy including the monthly cycle.