Charlotte – Day 1
After months of planning, the Global Ambassadors Program (GAP) received a warm southern welcome to Charlotte, North Carolina. Bank of America’s Julie Harris (and Global Ambassador alumna – Mexico 2014) kicked off the opening dinner Sunday evening against the breathtaking backdrop of the Bank headquarters’ 59th floor window to the city.
The event served as a fitting starting point for our 2017 programming, now in its fifth year and taking place in the U.S. for the first time. To mark the occasion, we reunited with GAP participants from past trips: Burnet Tucker (GAP Singapore 2013), Rosa María Barreiro (GAP Mexico 2014), and Fabiola Brumley (GAP Brazil 2013). Katerina Cronstedt, a mentee from our Poland trip now transplanted to the U.S., joins us this week to share her first-hand perspectives from the mentoring experience and refresh her skills in business planning and communications.
Through a whirlwind of orientation and introductions, 24 extraordinary Global Ambassadors and their mentees in business, social enterprise and the nonprofit world began to get acquainted and share stories of their biggest challenges, laying the groundwork for a week of breakthrough change – diving deep into improving strategic plans, financial management, communications and marketing in order to take their businesses and organizations to new levels.
The cross-cultural connections and collaborations have already begun. “I’m grateful and anxious,” says Josefina Urzaiz, owner of Hammock Boutique, paired with Pearsons executive Karen Starns to work on scaling the business. “Grateful for this opportunity, and anxious about the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. But overall I’m thrilled and excited.”
Watch the program’s YouTube playlist.
Photography: David Hume Kennerly
Image at top: Juna Mathema and Anak Norm Bunnak