The Womanity Foundation’s founder and board of directors are proud to announce that Ms. Rafia Qureshi Heydrich has joined Womanity at the beginning of May 2017 as Executive Director. Ms. Antonella Notari Vischer leaves her position as Executive Director on 2nd June 2017 and joins the Womanity Board of Trustees in Switzerland.

“Rafia Qureshi brings with her a wealth of experience in the philanthropic and social development sectors,” says Yann Borgstedt, Womanity’s founder. “Her track record in strategic management of high-impact programs with innovative approaches – most recently for the Gatsby Charitable Foundation and JPMorgan Chase Foundation – perfectly equips her to guide Womanity forward. I am confident that she will develop meaningful and valuable collaborations with our partners and supporters, and map out new creative avenues to effectively advance women’s empowerment.”

Rafia Qureshi’s background uniquely qualifies her to assume the post as Womanity’s Executive Director. She brings with her a valuable mix of public and private sector experience having worked and lived in various emerging markets within Africa, Asia and the Middle East. She has significant proficiency in designing, implementing and assessing complex models for socio-economic development, as well as hands-on experience in institutional development of grass-roots organisations. She has also been engaged in the strategic and operational development of Foundations through her experiences at Gatsby and JPMorgan Chase.

Rafia Qureshi shared, “I am honoured to be entrusted with the challenging opportunity of leading Womanity in its next phase of growth and development. I look forward to building on Womanity’s achievements thus far and to finding new and innovative ways to be a thoughtful and valuable player in the field of women’s empowerment.”

Rafia Qureshi will replace Antonella Notari Vischer, who has served as Executive Director of the Womanity Foundation since 2010. “I am proud of what we have achieved as a team and with our partners over the past years. We have built a solid base for Womanity’s work to continue to grow, by consolidating collaborations built on shared visions, profound respect and trust, and by daring to explore new ways to allow girls and women to own their lives, realise their aspirations and positively contribute to their communities.” Antonella Notari Vischer leaves Womanity to pursue her own venture and will be joining the Womanity Board of Trustees in Switzerland.

“I am grateful to Antonella Notari Vischer for her deep commitment to Womanity’s cause and for helping me shape the foundation and its work in a way that reflects the entrepreneurial and collaborative spirit that I so highly value. We have made a significant impact under her leadership, and we are determined to continue to push the boundaries and accelerate progress for girls and women – and, by the same token, for men! As she joins our Board of Trustees, Antonella Notari Vischer will continue to contribute to Womanity’s journey of growth,” says Yann Borgstedt.