Our team on the ground is small, just three full time and one part-time staff members, however our broader support team is huge!
We work closely with Virgin Unite the entrepreneurial foundation of the Virgin Group and the Branson family as well as Necker Island, part of Virgin Limited Edition. And we have an ever increasing pool of wonderful volunteers and strategic partners that help us accomplish great things.
Our three full time staff members are Sauda Smith, Lauren Keil, and Kim Takeuchi, and our part-time staff member is Amanda Georges.
Sauda Smith, Executive Director
Dr. L. Sauda Smith is an alumna of Wesleyan University, the University of Wisconsin – Madison and Warnborough University (UK). She is the former Vice President of the H. Lavity Stoutt Community College in the British Virgin Islands. She is a Fulbright Hayes Scholar, Marshall Scholar and Phi Theta Kappa International Leadership Facilitator and Instructor. She has authored three textbooks and a Writer’s handbook. She is a Linguist by training and speaks Yoruba, Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese. In April of 2018 she joined the Unite BVI Foundation as its Executive Director.
Lauren Keil, Foundation Manager
Lauren has worked both locally and internationally in numerous capacities leading social change and investing in people and projects for the greater good. As a Belonger, having been born in and having grown up in the BVI, and with her experience and background in social work, she is close to the heartbeat of understanding the needs in the community. She was the Executive Director of non-profit agency The Family Support Network (a domestic violence crisis support center), helped co-found a non-profit organization called ‘Hands On Volunteers’ (which worked both locally and internationally to initiate strategies for change) and has extensive international experience working in some of the world’s toughest communities in Johannesburg, Tijuana, San Francisco, Mozambique and Haiti. Lauren also co-founded an orphanage in Haiti and helped manage The Home for four years.
Kim Takeuchi, Foundation Manager
Kim comes from a background of international hotel operations and has been involved with entrepreneurial endeavours from an early age. From the early years of backyard lemonade stands her latest endeavour included launching
Virgin Gorda’s top restaurant, CocoMaya, in the British Virgin Islands. Her strengths are in her enthusiasm to empower and mentor others and her ability to see the potential of individuals in team environments. Kim is an adventurer by nature and is most excited about creative business, supporting entrepreneurial endeavours within the community and empowering youth to be the change makers of tomorrow.
Kim acted as Deputy Manager of Moskito Island and has personally known the Branson family for over 13 years. Kim has two creative and heart warming children, Wil and Charli who inspire her every day to be kind, say thank you and laugh.
Amanda Georges, Accountant
Amanda holds a B.A in Accounting and a B.A. in dance from the University of South Florida. She passed the Uniform CPA examination in 2008 and became licensed to practice in 2010. She has lived and worked in the BVI since 2010, initially as a staff auditor at BDO Limited until 2015 and then running her own accounting business VI Tax Consulting as well as her dance studio Frangipani.
Amanda has been involved in the community as co-artistic director of the performance group, The CADA Players, and as a choreographer and dancer. This group raised funds for charitable causes and organizations in the BVI and the Caribbean. In the aftermath of Irma, she got involved assisting with the distribution of food through Convoy of Hope, and volunteering at the National Emergency Operations Center.
She is pleased to join the Unite BVI Foundation as accountant in January 2020
At Unite BVI we are dedicated to supporting and empowering the local community. We are focused on identifying the root causes of issues and working together to overcome challenges to make a real difference and bring about positive change.
- Lauren Keil, Unite BVI Foundation Manager