Marie Terese Letorney, President
“This association is a genuine example of what defines an organisation of professional international women; a positive collaboration of mutual respect in friendships and working relationships. PWI is a unique association of pure diversity!”
Marie Terese Letorney’s multicultural professional and academic background makes her truly unique and highly valued among her Fortune 500 and European Union and Trade association clients. She is both an international opera singer as well as obtaining a Master’s Degree in the Science of Management.
Having performed on renowned European operatic and concert stages, she was recognized internationally by both the public and press with great enthusiasm. With her international performing experience of twenty years, as Founder & Director, Marie Terese developed an innovative method; Ask your Voice™ for all languages that is creative, effective and of high quality to assist one to ‘optimise his/her Voice’ and ‘enhance his/her Persona’ to their fullest capacity. Numerous Seminars and Master Classes have been presented to transatlantic clientele which range from Fortune 500 companies in the telecom, banking pharmaceutical/chemical and financial industries, including Trade associations universities and the European Union’s Parliament and Commission receiving positive and winning results. Marie Terese was invited as guest speaker at the European Communication Summit and continues to guest speak at various international forums, institutions and associations.
One of her passions is to help facilitate the professional woman to deliver and execute better communication for inclusivity and gender balance in her work environment. After all, women have the advantage of being born with naturally ‘expressive voices’.
Clare Mahon, Vice President
“PWI is a platform dedicated to learning, knowledge sharing and personal development all of which enables empowerment to flourish………”
Clare Mahon is a dynamic, resilient and result orientated leader, an enabler of operational transformation, a change agent from concept to delivery. She has an MBA from The Open University Business School, a Diploma in Hotel Management, Executive Programme in Management & Philosophies at Solvay Business School Economics & Management, is a Licentiate of The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development CIPD.
She is a visionary thinker with a proven background of strategic business-planning, transformation, product development and financial growth. Over fifteen years’ operational experience in ‘Finance, Strategic Planning, Human Resources & Customer focus’ with a unique ability to achieve organization effectiveness through buy-in to vision and change strategies. Driven by results and natural curiosity translating into innovative and creative ideas.
Clare strategically repositioned and directed a global organization’s signature executive peer networking program in Europe with a 5.5 million EUR budget and a team of 35 programme, operations and sales staff. Achieved 50% revenue growth and doubled profitability over 4 years. Masterminded worldwide project to identify, define and embed corporate values and culture change in a global organization. As HR leader focused on organisational redesign/restructuring, talent management and strategic workforce planning.
Clare who has a passion for enabling learning, knowledge sharing and personnel development joined PWI as Vice President in June 2015. She presently lives in Belgium.
Anke Sieg, Treasurer
“PWI is a platform for personal development, leadership and transformation to enable diverse, high performing organisations. Partnering and overcoming differences in today’s fast changing environment is the key to success.”
Dr. Anke Sieg is a multilingual pharmacist with experience in various R&D positions at multinational companies across Europe. She is speaker at international research conferences and mentor for emerging scientists. Since earning her MBA Solvay Brussels School of Economics and Management, she has moved to technical business development in the B2B Healthcare environment. Anke is passionate about transforming organizations from within and sustainably creating value. Her unique combination of business and science, customer focus, pragmatism and creative vision channel diverse teams towards their common goal and make Anke the next generation leader in today’s challenging world.
Irene Personne, VP Marketing
“PWI provides a safe environment for women to further develop professionally through sharing and learning from each other’s experience and working as a volunteer in one of their many projects.”
Irene is an entrepreneur who enjoys pioneering new technologies. After a few years in market research and senior marketing positions in the telecoms sector she created her own consultancy firm in 2002. She has since worked in interim management and project management functions for different companies and government institutions in the telecommunications and ICT sector in Europe, Africa and the Caribbean region.
She joined the PWI exec team at the beginning of 2014 and currently serves as the VP marketing in the PWI board.
Susannah Hann, Executive Director
“PWI offers a supportive environment to professional women wanting to learn and improve their leadership skills”
Susannah is an independent adviser on capital markets, entrepreneurship & EU public policy. Susannah has previously served as the Secretary General of EuropeanIssuers, a Brussels-based association which represents the interests of publicly traded companies in Europe, an adviser on the post financial crisis to the Financial Reporting Council, the UK regulator for corporate reporting and governance, an Associate Director of Public Affairs at Fidelity International, a major international asset management firm, a Senior Legal Adviser to the CBI (Confederation of British Industry) and a solicitor at Clifford Chance, a leading City law firm.
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Directors of PWI Programs
Beverley Sinton has been the PWI Office Manager since 2008. From Nov 2015 to Jan 2017, Beverley was the Membership Director.
She has mainly worked in the 'not for profit' sector including the British Civil Service, St John Ambulance and Focus Career Services.
Born in Yorkshire, England, she has a degree in English Literature and a deep love of theatre, and reading.
Beverley came to Belgium in 1994, has lived in The Netherlands and now lives in Leuven, with her husband, twins and two cats.
Anita Vandevivere, Director of Mentoring
Working with people both intrigues and inspires Anita. Being challenged by the diverse backgrounds of her clients and their different business contexts engages her.
In her professional life, Anita's roles are threefold - a coach, a sounding board, and a facilitator of conversations that need to happen, mostly working with senior leaders and their staff, adapting her interventions to the needs of the individual, the team or the organisation. She is a Professional Certified Coach according to the International Coach Federation standards, currently working towards the Master Coach designation. Depending on which topics or needs emerge, she also provides specific training programmes.
Anita considerable international experience through living and working abroad (Europe, Hong Kong and US). After having developed a career inside organisations she started my own business with clients in all sectors, from industry, consulting and the public sector. These experiences gave her insights into business contexts and cultural diversity.
Anita is the Director of our Mentoring programme.
Alessandra Satta, Director of the STEAM Woman (Science, Technology, Engineering and Arts and Mathematics)
Alessandra Satta is a physicist with a specialization on Science and Technology of Advanced Materials. She obtained her Ph.D. degree in Physics at the University of Leuven, in Belgium. For 12 years she worked as a researcher in Technological Innovation at the Interuniversity MicroElectronics Center (Imec), in Leuven. This is a world-leading research center in nanoelectronics, which leverages scientific knowledge and industry-relevant technologies for a better life in a sustainable society, with the innovative power of a global partnerships in the fields of ICT, healthcare and energy.
Since 2011 Alessandra works to promote systems thinking as an indispensable shift in the way we think about complex issues. A system is a set of interdependent elements that make an undivided whole. A systems approach encourages to think in terms of relationships, interconnectedness and context. Alessandra is committed to developing systems practice as an essential part of education and innovation for sustainability.
Alessandra is the Director of our STEAM woman programme.
Emmanuelle Verhagen, Director of Women Entrepreneurs
“PWI is the only truly European-born international association for professional women in Brussels. It’s a unique and unexpected group of friends with a wonderful vibe.”
Emmanuelle is extremely passionate about stimulating people to grow to their full potential. She’s very much involved in leadership in all it’s aspects and strongly beliefs people-centric collaborative structures are the key to our future.
She’s earned her spurs running several international marketing and brand consultancies, an internet company as well as a healthcare facilitator, mostly serving Fortune Global 500 clients in Asia Pacific, Middle East and North America (check her LinkedIn page for full details).
Throughout the various roles she fulfilled both in her professional and her private life, she got confronted with change and chasms. This got her fascinated with how to cope best with situations that force you to move from one position to another. In short: how to deal with transitions. Whether it’s moving from one role into another (like moving from a manager to a director level or from a director to a C-level), or moving from being an employee to running your own business as a true entrepreneur but also moving from one country to another, leveraging a divorce, etc.
She’s a global citizen who made her home in Europe and lives both in the EU capital Brussels and under the Tuscan sun in Arezzo.
Ana Escarpenter, Director of Social Media
Ana’s background is in tourism promotion, marketing and event organisation. In her 20 years of experience she has worked for marketing consultancy firms, economy & tourism ministries and international associations.
As director of the Catalan Tourist Board for the Benelux and of Brussels – Wallonia Tourism in Spain her role was to develop off-line and on-line opportunities in both markets. Her interest for digital marketing has brought her to participate in several initiatives linking new technologies to the travel and meeting industries. She enjoys the challenges of technologies and particularly those of human interactions. Connecting people with opportunities really motivates her.
From being a NLP practitioner (neurolinguistics programming) she now follows an Executive Master at the UCL (université catholique de Louvain) to become a Business Coach.
In her free time she is a Nordic walking instructor and a Kundalini yoga teacher.
Ana is PWI’s new Social Media director.
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Cristina Vicini, President of the Advisory Board
Cristina Vicini was the elected president of the Professional Women International Brussels, from January 2006 to May 2011. Managing Director and Founder of her own Management Consulting practice, Vicini Consulting (www.viciniconsulting.com), Cristina started her career in 1988 and Theld various international management positions, both in the private sector and within international organizations, including inter alia as former Global Business Development Manager at Microsoft, as Director of Sales at Deutsche Telekom -Systems-International Public Sector and as Strategic Marketing Manager for the Public Sector in Germany at Siemens Business Services.
She holds a degree with honors in Computer Science from the University of Brussels and a Masters Degree in International Management from Boston University.
Cristina serves on the boards of a number of European technology companies and associations. She also serves on the Advisory Board of Boston University and is an accredited member of the Association of Board Members in Belgium.
Born in Bologna, Italy, Cristina is married, fluent in five languages and is an avid golf and tennis player.
Alessandra Zocca, Member of the Advisory Board
Having worked in Belgium, Italy, Germany and Sweden, Alessandra is a change management expert with an international career background in managerial positions within leading global multinational organisations, including DHL, Accenture and the European Commission.
Currently, Alessandra is working in HR at the new EU agency Single Resolution Board (SRB), the resolution authority within the Banking Union.
In 2011 she was appointed as Secretary-General of Professional Women International (PWI) Brussels where she founded the "PWI Magazine", an online quarterly review about management and culture, of which she was the director.
She started her career as an organisation and manufacturing lecturer at the University of Verona, where she graduated in Economics in 1985 (her thesis was published). In 2001 she earned her Master Degree in Neurolinguistic Programming (NLP).
Recently, Alessandra founded and is the President of Opportunalia aisbl (networking masters), an organisation in the tourism sector. She has also actively contributed to associations like AIESEC, Amnesty International and Fondazione Marisa Bellisario.
Born in Verona (Italy), Alessandra speaks five languages, is a passionate traveler and a psychology scholar.
Ruth Etter, Member of the Advisory Board
“PWI is a place where interesting people meet for evenings of exchanging ideas and improving all manners of skills. A forum for like-minded people.
I have never left an event or workshop not feeling energised and elated.”
Ruth is a Swiss national with British citizenship.
She has a background in banking.
For the last 15 years she has been managing her own international interior design business working with customers in Europe and USA.
Having lived in different European countries has given her the ability to work in four languages and understand nuances of working in different cultures.
She held board positions and presidency of Brussels based Women’s International Club asbl.
Elizabeth Hammer-Kjellberg, Member of the Advisory Board
In Memoriam - 1944-2016
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Marie Laure Walrand, Honorary Member
Armelle Loghmanian, Honorary Member
Sonia Neefs, Honorary Member