Suzy Brokensha, FAIRLADY Editor.
Suzy Brokensha has been the editor of FAIRLADY for the past thirteen years. Under her leadership, this iconic South African brand has grown and diversified while still retaining its authentic, original and passionately South African voice.
Before starting her magazine career at Cosmopolitan magazine, Suzy lectured in Semiotics and Sociolinguistics at the AAA School of Advertising. She then founded PARTWORKS, where she edited various successful customer titles and continued to freelance REMOVE STUFF ON THE EDITED PAGE magazines, winning several prestigious awards for her own writing.
Suzy went back into consumer publishing again to edit Marie Claire before she was offered the editorship of FAIRLADY in 2005..
Professor Thuli Madonsela, Chief Patron of the Thuli Madonsela Foundation
Professor Thuli Madonsela is an Advocate of the High Court of South Africa and a lifelong activist on social justice, constitutionalism, human rights, good governance and the rule of law. Named one of TIME100’s influential people in 2014 and Forbes Africa Person of the Year in 2016, Prof Madonsela is one of the drafters of South Africa’s Constitution and co-architect of several laws that have sought to illumine South Africa’s democracy.
She was South Africa’s Public Protector for seven years, as well as co-architect and founding chairperson of the African Ombudsman Research Centre.
Prof Madonsela has a global reputation for her integrity and fearlessness in enforcing accountability and justice when it comes to the exercise of public power and the use of public resources.
She has a history of highlighting the importance of social justice in the pursuit of peace. Currently serving as Chair of Social Justice at Stellenbosch University, she is a Paul Harris Fellow, a Tällberg Global Leader and the recipient of Transparency International’s Integrity Award, the German Africa Prize and the Commonwealth Lawyers Truth and Justice Award, among numerous other accolades.
She is the Chair of Social Justice at Stellenbosch coupled with being the chief patron of The Thuli Madonsela Foundation.
Jo-Ann Strauss, Media entrepreneur and international speaker
Jo-Ann Strauss is one of South Africa’s most recognizable faces after a career spanning over 17 years in media and business. She is an internationally renowned master of ceremonies and speaker for prestigious international events all over the world.
She graduated from Stellenbosch University with a B.Comm (Law) degree after winning Miss South Africa in 2000. She is passionate about creating a spirit of entrepreneurship in South Africa. She is also an astute businesswoman who serves on the advisory board of Africa’s leading business school as well as Africa’s biggest media company, Media24 and award winning ad agency.
She works with UNICEF and Stop Hunger Now to protect the most vulnerable members of society.
Jo-Ann and her orthopedic surgeon husband have two children, with a third on the way, and she has an inspirational blog called Modern Mommy.
Dawn Nathan-Jones, Entrepreneur
Dawn Nathan-Jones is a dynamic entrepreneur and accomplished businesswoman with a career spanning over 35 years. She is most popularly recognised for her role as the only female ‘ Shark’ on M-Net’s Shark Tank, where entrepreneurs convince five self-made millionaires – the ‘Sharks’ – to invest in their businesses.
Dawn’s illustrious career started at the age of 21 when she joined Imperial Car Rental’s co-founders, Carol Scott and Maureen Jackson. Together, the team of three determined women identified a gap in the market and took on car rental giants with only five cars and plenty of passion, grit and hard work.
Her ability to continuously innovate, reinvent and drive change later landed her the coveted position of CEO of the Imperial Group’s Car Rental Division. Dawn stepped down from her role as CEO at the end of 2015, after 18 years at the helm. She has embarked on a new journey to assist ambitious young entrepreneurs in building their fledgling businesses into successful enterprises.
The winner of a series of prestigious awards, including Women of the World in 2009 and other accolades in recognition of her contribution to Women in Business and community projects, Dawn has been a patron of many worthy causes, mainly focused on the education and upliftment of children.
Dawn lists soul-time as a vital ingredient to success. That, and a balanced and healthy life connects her with reality and puts life into perspective, she says. Dawn lives in Cape Town with her 12-year-old son Daniel.
Annette La Grange, Head: HR Business Partners at Santam
Over the past 21 years, Annette has progressed through the ranks at Santam. She attributes her success to her ability to adapt.
When I started out, HR served a more basic function. In today’s environment we go far beyond recruiting staff. We develop people and we develop careers. And in each step of this journey, I have had the opportunity to learn.’
‘I once read that you are more likely to succeed as an entrepreneur if you’re motivated by helping to solve other people’s problems,’ she says. ‘Entrepreneurship involves 100% service to others.’
The mother of two teens, Annette stresses the vital role mothers and women in business can fulfill in educating the younger generation.
‘It is up to us to create the opportunities we never had and encourage them to work hard to create their own successful futures,’ she says. ‘Having the ability to take strong action and persist through challenges and failures is just one of the things I’ll be looking for in the Women of the Future. The winner should know what they stand for; have clear ideals and a strong sense of purpose. Above all, they must be passionate about pursuing their goals and making a difference.’