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© 2020 by SEIDEA CIC | BAME Women in Cybersecurity

Our Team 

We exist to close the cyber-security gender gap for BAME women.

Stephanie Itimi

Founder and Executive Director

Stephanie is passionate about upskilling girls and women from ethnic minority groups with digital skills needed to compete in the modern-day world. She has a track record of facilitating significant development initiatives and was part of the team that pioneered the world’s first public health information service inside the WhatsApp platform. It provided content in text, images and audio to users in West Africa from the BBC World Service as well as through partners Unicef, World Health Organisation, World Food Programme and the Centre for Disease Control. Outside Seidea she currently works as a Senior Equality and Partnerships Advisor to a Local Government Body.

Sonya Barlow

Corporate Partnership Advisor

Sonya Barlow is a women of colour in tech, with expertise in big data, insight, analytics and stakeholder management. Alongside this, she is the founder of Like-Minded Females (@lmf_network), an diversity & Inclusion initiative founded May 18 to empower, connect and celebrate females. Since launching, she has engaged with over 4000 people, hosted over 20 events and workshops with the likes of Santander, PWC, Royal mail and the BBC and even recognised as tech business women of the year 2018 sponsored by PWC. In 2018, Sonya partnered with the PWC techshecan charter to encourage diversity in tech. Sonya is a public speaker, workshop facilitator and confidence coach.    She is passionate about encouraging and providing opportunities to females in technology, especially those from an ethnic minority. 

Bushra Burge

Creative Technology Advisor

Bushra Burge is the Owner and Creative Director award-winning creative technology company BB Studio. Her background of science, technology and sustainable design cultivates innovation within her multi-disciplinary team. BB Studio's recent projects have included engaging immersive stories using virtual reality integrated with proprietary wearable technology used for educational and science communication, fashion marketing and user-centred research and development. Her career started 20 years ago as a software engineer within financial data, including the very first pioneering corporate e-commerce sites. Since then she has also had successful careers in sustainable fashion, academia and wearable technology.

Helen Babalola

Education Finance Advisor

Helen is passionate about Finance, Education and the sometimes obscure intersection between the two. Whilst at Goldman Sachs, she not only immersed herself in the world of long-term investing as a professional but also ran various initiatives designed to educate and inspire employees across the firm as a committee member of the Goldman Sachs Firmwide Black Network. Her passion for Education and Finance has most recently taken her to the UK Department for Education where she works as a Financial Policy Analyst. Outside of work, Helen volunteers for Action Tutoring, an education charity supporting pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds to achieve a higher level of academic attainment, with a view of helping them progress to further education, employment or training.store and collect data for your site.

Harry Phinda

Gender Policy Advisor

Harry promotes the rights of women and girls through education and advocacy. He is the co-founder of Youth for Change (YFC), which is a global youth led organisation that works in partnership with organisations and governments to tackle gender-based violence and to create positive change. YCF’s main aim is to eradicate early forced marriage (EFM) and female genital mutilation (FGM) in their generation. The organisation works in the UK, Bangladesh, Tanzania and Ethiopia. Youth for Change started a campaign called #traintoprotect which provides a curriculum for teachers to protect girls from FGM and EFM. So far Harry and his team have trained 100 teachers in six schools in London. 

Serah Francis

Head of Community

Serah is passionate in promoting digital skills for women and girls as well as online safety and awareness.  She has ran various initiatives designed to promote women and girls education. She co-founded ISES initiative that facilitated discussion, information sharing and input into the policy space provided by the UNESCO on issues and developments of digital transformation.  The initiative brought together experts from government, academia and  private organisations from different countries to share their experiences and implementation models to help in tackling information security issues. It included submitting proposals as well as speaking in Workshops and Conferences such as annual WSIS forum in ITU Geneva and International Federation of Information Processing (IFIP) World Computer Congress in Poland and Korea.