Lecturer and Coordinator: Programme in Textile and Polymer Science - University Of Stellenbosch
Adine Gericke is a lecturer in Textile Science at the University of Stellenbosch, one of the leading tertiary institutions in South Africa. She obtained her MSc at the same university in 2001. In 2003 she was responsible for the founding and development of the degree in Textile and Polymer Science in the Department of Chemistry and Polymer Science at the University of Stellenbosch (the first in SA) and has been heading the programme since then. This relatively new approach to education in this study field focus on Textile Science, with a strong scientific base in Chemistry and Polymer Science.
Her research focus on the evaluation of performance properties related to thermo-physiological comfort through laboratory testing. Currently the focus is on the performance properties of mohair fabrics.
Consultant - Africa Fashion International
Alex Harris, a CPUT graduate in marketing, previously worked for Woolworths for slightly more than 10 years. After which, he joined Foschini (which is part of The Foschini Group) and spent the next 20 years with the group. In his capacity of General Manager he was responsible for Foschini and Donna Claire Merchandise divisions.
His love for fashion, extensive business travel to China, India, Mauritius, UK and the USA and the desire to develop new incumbents into the industry led him to join the CTFC (Cape Town Fashion Council) and later became the chairman for just under two years.
He launched a new tween stand alone business for The Foschini Group (TFG) called SODA Bloc and opened 20 stores in a period of 15 months.
He has left TFG in December 2016 and is consulting into the retail fashion industry. His latest contract is with African Fashion International to re-invigorate the AFI Fastrack program which better prepares post graduate design students to enter the market place. Now he is focusing on small to medium manufacturers and retailers to help identify and develop their business opportunities.
Senior Vice President - Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (WRAP)
As Senior Vice President at Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production (WRAP), Mr. Hickson manages international operations and helps develop and refine WRAP’s strategy. He specifically focuses on managing relationships with global brands and retailers and with governmental and other stakeholder organizations. Mr. Hickson has extensive experience in international marketing, corporate communications, strategic planning, and cross-cultural communications. he has developed and led seminars and other initiatives around the world in the field of social responsibility in collaboration with audit firms, manufacturing facilities, industry associations, government bodies and others, which initiatives have facilitated understanding of socially responsible and ethical practices as well as an understanding of how to implement social compliance programs. He is fluent in Mandarin Chinese.
Chief Executive Officer - Imprint Luxury
Cyril Naicker is renowned as a dedicated supporter of South Africa’s clothing and textile industry, and of all aspects of wearing Proudly South African fashion. A popular workshop panelist and the creator of a TV show about local fashion, he is also a boardmember of Fashion Revolution South Africa. He is currently the Chief Executive Officer at Imprint Luxury, which specialises in bespoke Events, Food and Fashion, South African Travel and Tours, Hospitality and PR Marketing.
Dr. James Winkler
Chief of Party - USAID Southern Africa Trade & Investment Hub
Dr. James Winkler is the Chief of Party of the USAID Southern Africa Trade & Investment Hub (the Hub), a $73 million contract to increase investment and two-way trade in the region implemented by DAI. To date, the Hub has supported over $55 million in exports to the U.S. under the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act and other markets, and facilitated $163 million in investment and finance, supporting agribusiness, financial services, apparel and textiles, fast moving consumer goods, and other industries.
Before moving to South Africa in March 2019, Dr. Winkler was the Global Practice Leader for Trade, Competitiveness & Investment and a senior manager since 1990 at DAI, a global economic development consulting firm based in Washington D.C. and London and operating in over 70 countries. Jim has over 30 years of board leadership and senior management experience working with governments, corporations, trade associations, non-governmental organizations, international schools and universities, and donor agencies in emerging markets.
As Global Practice Leader, he advised a portfolio of 25 contracts valued at over $550 million in trade and investment operating in 38 countries, and was Technical Director for three large regional projects in Africa, including DFID’s FoodTrade in East and Southern Africa, and USAID’s East Africa Trade & Investment Hub based in Nairobi and Southern Africa Trade & Investment Hub based in Pretoria, as well as the DFID Myanmar Da Na Facility in Yangon promoting private sector development. He specializes in trade and investment, strategic management, economic governance, competitiveness, and enterprise growth strategies with experience in 48 countries in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, and Eastern Europe.
He is currently a board member of the Corporate Council on Africa, which represents over 180 large U.S. and African companies doing business in Africa, and the Brain Wellness Fund which promotes cures for post-traumatic stress and brain injury among service men and women and veterans. He has chaired and been elected or appointed to four international school boards in Bankgok, Hanoi, Jerusalem and Zagreb.
Jim has Ph.D. and Masters degrees from The Fletcher School at Tufts University and a Bachelors degree from The McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University.
Head - Manufacturing (Traditional) - Investment & Trade Development, Economic Development Board, Mauritius
Geerish Bucktowonsing is the Head of the Manufacturing Traditional sector of Economic Development Board Mauritius, the National Institution that has the mandate to promote Trade, Business and Investment amongst others. He oversees the traditional manufacturing sector that comprises of key industries amongst Textile & Apparel, Sugar, Seafood and Rum & Spirits. He is well versed with the Mauritian Manufacturing Industry having served in key positions from planning, production, marketing and strategic planning in major renowned companies. He is also engaged to promote Mauritius as the Strategic Partner in Trade & Investment. He is well known to South African Buyers in the Textile and Apparel Sector. The International Mauritian Fashion Show, he initiated on a number of occasions, remains unforgettable.
He holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering & an MBA from Edinburgh Business School and is very active in pushing for more intra trade in the Region.
Founder - Twyg
Jackie May has worked in big and medium-sized mainstream media organisations in London and South Africa for more than 25 years. Eighteen months ago, she founded Twyg, a digital media platform created to inspire sustainable living. She is passionate about doing whatever she can to grow the battered local clothing and textile industry into a vibrant hub of ethical and sustainable manufacturing. Prior to launching Twyg, Jackie edited the South African edition of the international women’s fashion magazine, Marie Claire and was the Cape editor of the national newspaper, The Times. She has written a historical memoir, frontpage splashes, news stories and countless columns. When she isn’t producing content for Twyg, she writes for Sunday Times, Times Select and Business Day. Jackie has an MA in Philosophy from the University of London and is currently studying at the Sustainability Institute in Stellenbosch. She lives with her family in Cape Town.
Deputy Assistant U.S. Trade Representative for Textiles - Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
Janet Heinzen is the Deputy Assistant USTR for Textiles in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. She works with Assistant USTR Bill Jackson to conduct and oversee trade negotiations affecting textile and apparel products, provides input on policy matters for textile and apparel trade, and works to expand the industry’s access to foreign markets. Prior to joining USTR, she served for 33 years in the Office of Textiles and Apparel at the U.S. Department of Commerce, where she was the Director for 11 years. Ms. Heinzen is a graduate of the University of Texas – El Paso and has a Master of Arts degree in International Relations from the University of Notre Dame.
Kim & Natalie Ellis
Founders - The Joinery
The Joinery is a sustainable lifestyle brand. We pride ourselves in designing and producing bespoke sustainable products and ethical fashion and accessories, all the while striving for a high-end design aesthetic with an African conscience.Our bespoke products, and fashion collections are produced by sewing cooperatives, and artisans based in and around the townships of Cape Town, South Africa. We use eco fabrics such Tencel, Linen, Rayon and Hemp fabrics where we can, and fibres that are grown without the use of toxic pesticides and synthetic fertilisers. We see ourselves as pioneers in the sustainable product and fashion design arena and are winners of the 2017 PETCO awards for ‘Best Product using recycled PET’ as well as recent winners of the Eco Logic Awards for ‘Eco Innovation’.
Editor, Fashion & Beauty - WGSN
Previously part of the womenswear team, Polly now heads up WGSN’s newest product, the Fashion Feed, a continuous live-edit of the need-to-know trends from around the globe. With a background in design and buying, she is committed to unearthing the latest emerging trends and delivering them at lightning speed. Based in London, Polly advises companies on projects that range from future directions in denim to men’s casualwear and womenswear apparel.
General Manager, Investment and Trade Promotion Unit - Lesotho National Development Corporation
Mr. Phohlo is an economist and a risk professional by training certified by the University of Cape Town and the Institute of Risk Management in the United Kingdom respectively. He has been a banker for 16 years covering treasury management, international transactions, enterprise-wide risk management and compliance issues across various banks in the Kingdom of Lesotho. He specializes in financial markets, competition and regulation, energy economics, international finance and labor economics. He has been a board member in several organizations including Land Administration Authority and Centre for Accounting Studies in Lesotho. He has also consulted for United Nations Development Programme in Lesotho and a treasury specialist company based in South Africa. He has a vested interest in the development agenda of least developed countries at large. He is currently leading a team of professionals focused on investment promotion and trade facilitation to the Kingdom of Lesotho.
Executive Vice President - American Apparel & Footwear Assoscation
Steve Lamar is executive vice president at the American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA). He is responsible for the design and execution of AAFA lobbying strategies on a series of issues covering trade, supply chains and brand protection. Lamar is also president of the Washington International Trade Association (WITA), a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to providing a neutral forum for discussion of international trade policy and related issues.