Building a stronger Canada through innovative leadership by Canadians of Guyanese heritage.
Nadira Lawrence-Selan - Chair of the Indigenous Friendship Committee
Nadira Lawrence-Selan (BBA Honours, BEd) is a transformative leader that is self-motivated and visionary with almost 20 years of experience within the finance industry and education. After graduating from the Schulich School of Business in 2003, Nadira worked at Manulife Financial in various departments including Sales, Marketing and Product Management for ten years and spearheaded many large-scale projects during her tenure. Her personal experiences have fostered a very deep understanding of the importance of inclusivity and equity especially for the youths of today, their families and the communities that surround them.
Nadira’s work experience within the finance industry, in addition to enduring years of colonialist barriers motivated her to pursue a career that was altruistic in nature, surrounded by people who share a common vision of making a positive difference in the lives of people.
In 2014, Nadira became a secondary school teacher. She is currently the Curricular Department Head in Business Studies and Technological Studies. Nadira is also part of various committees and leads the Business Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) Program at her school, which focuses on providing students interested in business with certifications and sector specific experiences. She is a progressive educator that focuses on culturally responsive and relevant pedagogy in the classroom.
Nadira is passionate about breaking systemic barriers and working with youths and communities in their pursuit of leadership opportunities and other aspirations. With a sound business background, Nadira has been able to leverage her leadership skills and knowledge in hopes of inspiring marginalized ethnocultural groups and addressing racial disproportionalities in access and outcomes.
Andre Itwaru - Co-Chair of the Indigenous Friendship Committee
Mr. Andre Itwaru is an experienced business executive and entrepreneur. After graduating from DeVry University with honors, Mr. Itwaru spent the early part of his career at AT&T where he benefitted from significant leadership training and was the winner of multiple awards. While at AT&T, Mr. Itwaru led the way toward AT&T successfully negotiating and forming relationships as well as connecting with various telecom companies around the world. Mr. Itwaru was also responsible for global pre-sales, post sales and life cycle management, managing teams and being responsible for clients in various countries around the world. Mr. Itwaru was recruited from AT&T by Sprint as a Change Agent responsible for the successful development of departments, integration of staff and services from acquisitions and launch of new services. He moved on to becoming a founder of four businesses which he led to various levels of success, including exits by way of the sale and public listing of those corporations. He has extensive experience raising capital, building organizations, developing innovative technology and software solutions, operating in the public markets, developing extensive international relationships, working with regulators around the world, and delivering services globally. Andre has a deep passion for and commitment to the well being of indigenous communities.