Author - Veronica Guguian

Member Spotlight: Maurice Pronk

Each month we’ll feature a different AABC member in our new Member Spotlight, this month Maurice Pronk. Would you like to be featured in a future edition of our Member Spotlight? Get in touch with Veronica at marketing@aabc.nl

1. Who are you? (introduce yourself)

My name is Maurice Pronk, I am working for Atlas International Movers since 2015 and my current position is Business Development Manager (Sales & Marketing). My focus is to get in contact with HR/Global Mobility Managers who are working for corporate accounts. But I am also managing the Social Media accounts and website of Atlas International Movers.

2. When and why did you join the AABC?

If I am right, I joined the AABC directly in my first year at Atlas International Movers, so in the year 2015, 4 years ago. I joined the AABC because I want to get in contact with American people and companies in The Netherlands, to expand my network and to discuss if we can do business together. But, also to have a lot of fun and like we say in Dutch: “gezelligheid”!

3. Tell us about your business and how we can work with you.

Atlas International Movers is a moving company which is specialized in relocations all over the world. If a member of the AABC is moving abroad, we offer a 10% discount. In the request it has to be very clear that it is a request for an AABC member. The request can be sent to info@atlas-movers.com.

4. What are your tips and/or advice about doing business in the Netherlands?

I don’t have any specific advice or tips about this, but if an organization has to move a large number of employees within a certain period of time, we organize sessions in which we inform employees how to prepare and which steps they need to take to make the process as easy as possible. It is our goal to exceed customer expectations.

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Gender Equality Symposium A Contemporary Conversation on the State of Female Leadership

One of the AABC’s goals for 2020 is to create more events in partnership with other business organizations. For the first co-hosted event of 2020, we joined forces with the American Women’s Club of Amsterdam to bring you a symposium on gender equality and female leadership. During the symposium, local leaders from various sectors will discuss the state of gender equality and leadership opportunities. The conversation will highlight career opportunities, leadership, entrepreneurship, education, and societal perception. This program will be moderated by Tracy Metz, the Director of the John Adams Institute and host of talk show Stadsleven.

Highlights of the event

  • Current climate for women in business. Where are we now, what is next, and how long to achieve gender equality? How do we measure success?
  • Successes and obstacles in the workplace. Hear our speakers’ professional journeys.
  • Women in the workplace the US and the Netherlands & EU. A look inside business in both continents and how policy, government and culture play a vital role in equity in the workplace.
  • Where do we go from here. How can we impact change and break through barriers? What are you doing to affect women in leadership and expedite change?

Panelists

Marja Verloop – Deputy Chief of Mission 

A career member of the U.S. Department of State’s Senior Foreign Service, Marja Verloop assumed her position as Deputy Chief of Mission at U.S. Embassy The Netherlands in June 2019. Previously, she was the Deputy Executive Director for the East Asian and Pacific Affairs Bureau, with administrative responsibility and oversight for 45 overseas posts and 12 domestic offices. Marja has also served as the State Department’s Director for Innovation and at Embassies around the world including India, Canada, Namibia, Malaysia, and Poland. A member of the Department’s Leadership Roundtable, Marja is also the recipient of numerous Superior and Meritorious Honor Awards.

Judge Kimberly Prost, International Criminal Court

Prior to her election as judge of the ICC, Judge Prost served as Chef de Cabinet for the President of the International Criminal Court for a two year term. Before joining the Court, she was appointed in 2010 as the first Ombudsperson for the Security Council Al Qaida Sanctions Committee. In July 2006, after election by the United Nations General Assembly, she was appointed to sit as an ad litem judge of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia on a multi-accused trial (Popovic et al) related to events at Srebrenica and Zepa.

Previously, Judge Prost worked for the Canadian Department of Justice for 18 years, appearing before all levels of the Canadian courts, including the Supreme Court. Judge Prost also held managerial positions with the Commonwealth Secretariat and the UN Office on Drugs and Crime delivering a range of programmes for States on international cooperation, money laundering and asset forfeiture, counter terrorism, implementation of the Rome Statute, and combating organized crime and corruption. Judge Prost graduated as a gold medallist from the University of Manitoba Law School.

Christina Moreno – CEO, She Matters Recruitment 

Coming from a background of poverty, Christina Moreno dropped out of high school at 16, became a mom at 18, and was on social benefits with no promising future at all. Yet after a life-altering event with her caseworker, she decided to pursue a degree in law. Today, she is the founder and CEO of She Matters, a social enterprise recruitment agency working towards the social and economic empowerment of migrant and refugee women. 

Ida Sabelis – Associate Professor, Vrije Universitiet Amsterdam

An associate Professor of Organization Studies at Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam. She holds a Ph.D. in Organizational Anthropology. She is currently working on a biography of the Durban artist and ‘bush wife’ Nola Steele and her husband, conservationist Nick Steele, who worked in KZN, which came about because of an interest in ecofeminism and the position of women in nature conservation. In the 1980s and 1990s, Ida worked as an organizational consultant on the topic ‘diversity in organizations’ in the pioneering Dutch institute of Kantharos (management of diversity). From the mid-1990s on, the perspective of time/s in organizations offered a conceptual framework further to theorize questions of complex inequalities in organizations (gender, multiculturalism, and diversity) and long-term organizational development (sustainability, future/s, continuity and change). Publications include “Gendering environmental sustainability and organization: Introduction,”Gender, Work & Organization'”25(3), 215-221, with Agnes Bolsø and Mary Phillips and “Hidden lives, invisible vocation?: Giving voice to game rangers’ wives in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa,” in Contemporary perspectives on ecofeminism (pp. 132-149), Routledge, with Harry Wels and Tamarisk van Vliet (2015). Her most recent book isAcademia in Crisis (2019; open access from Feb. 2020) with Leonidas Donskis and others, dealing with increased work pressure and commercialization of universities in Europe.

Sarah Woodhouse – General Counsel Europe, General Counsel Food and Refreshment Global, Unilever

Sarah joined Unilever in 2003 and currently advises on all strategic aspects of the company’s food and refreshment division from innovation to acquisition. She connects to a global team of lawyers across the world. Sarah was based in Singapore for 5.5 years leading the legal team across Asia and Australia on development and diversity and inclusion. She has the distinction of the appearing on the 500 Powerlist Benelux 2019. Sarah has extensive corporate experience in a global setting.

Moderated by Tracy Metz

Tracy Metz is a Dutch-American journalist, writer and moderator who is driven by her passion for our relationship to our built and natural environment. She writes for the Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad and the American magazine Architectural Record and has a live talk show on urban issues called Stadsleven (‘city life’). She has written several books, all pertaining to the way we furbish and relate to our surroundings, of which the most recent was the best-selling Sweet&Salt: Water and the Dutch. She is also the director of the John Adams Institute, an independent foundation that provides a podium in the Netherlands for the best and brightest of American thinking.

Symposium Introduction by Susan Davis

Susan is the founder of Leadership Designs and its principal consultant. Her 20-plus years of experience with companies such as Microsoft, Amazon, Starbucks, and organizations including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the WNBA’s Seattle Storm, and venture philanthropy organizations spans executive coaching, leadership development, organizational alignment, meeting facilitation, and human resources strategy. Susan holds a master’s degree in applied behavioral science and is the co-author of Brand Driven, The Route to Integrated Branding Through Great Leadership.

Susan is a founding and extended leadership team member of Pivotal Ventures, an investment and incubation company created by Melinda Gates in 2014. Pivotal Ventures partners with organizations and individuals who share their urgency for social progress in the United States. They grow understanding around issues, expand participation, encourage cooperation and fuel new approaches that substantially improve people’s lives. Most recently, in October 2019, on the heels of her N.Y. Times best-selling book, The Moment of Lift, How Empowering Women Changes the World, Melinda Gates pledged $1 billion to gender equality.

Join us on March 17th, starting 06:00 PM to discuss the state of female leadership in 2020.

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Member Spotlight: Myriam Clouët des Pesruches

Each month we’ll feature a different AABC member in our new Member Spotlight, this month Myriam Clouët des Pesruches. Would you like to be featured in a future edition of our Member Spotlight? Get in touch with Veronica at marketing@aabc.nl

1. Who are you? (introduce yourself)

I am French and I have been living with my family in Amsterdam since 2013. I grew up in France and abroad and that experience as an ATCK (Adult Third Culture Kid) — followed by other expatriations as an adult — has given me a deep understanding of the mechanics of expatriation, of its complexity, especially at a human level. Human connection is something I feel passionate about in both my personal and professional lives.

In that spirit, I have created Course Kids4Kids, a not-for-profit, solidarity run organized once a year in Amsterdam that enables kids to raise funds for kids in need. The goal is to raise children’s awareness of the importance of caring about others.

I am also a business owner and I offer relocation support services. I advise and support companies and individuals in all stages of the relocation process. There again, the human dimension is at the core of my work. I serve as an advisor to my customers and offer them tailor-made services that fit their specific needs. Building a strong relationship with them and genuinely helping them is what motivates me in my job.

2. When and why did you join the AABC?

I joined the AABC in 2018 as I wanted to meet other companies and professionals. But to me, networking is not just a business thing. It is first and foremost the opportunity to meet other people, to discover and understand cultural differences. It has been a great experience so far, and I have also met some of the partners I am now working with. 

3. Tell us about your business and how we can work with you.

Relocation is a great adventure, but it is a challenging one, like any adventure. Preparation is key to make it successful both for the individual, and the employer. I help my clients in all stages of the process: it can be upfront, during and at the end, or at only one of those stages. I anticipate my clients’ needs, help them understand what needs to be done and support them throughout that often-stressful experience. I cover a wide array of topics, from advising on the content of the relocation packages offered by companies, to administrative matters and housing, as well as education or the integration of the spouse and the children in the new country for example. I offer my services for relocating to the Netherlands, as well as to other countries. 

I first do a free intake session with them during which we discuss their specific needs and their priorities. Based on that assessment, I then propose them a tailor-made service in order to support them in the best possible way. 

Depending on my client’s needs, I regularly partner up with other professionals such as moving companies, estate agents, financial advisors, but also education specialists, life coaches, recruitment agencies etc. I have met some of them thanks to the AABC. This is a great community to meet internationals and do business.

4. What are your tips and/or advice about doing business in the Netherlands?

The Netherlands is a great place to start a business because the concept of taking a chance and taking risks is very much part of the national culture. It is even encouraged with kids. Things are different in France for instance, where it tends to be a more risk-averse culture. So, if you are in the Netherlands and have an idea for a business, believe in yourself and go for it!

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