January 20, 2014


In January 2014, WEConnect International established its advisory council in South Africa, comprised of procurement heads from corporate members Intel, Exxon Mobil, Accenture and Cummins. Council members have experience varying from women empowerment programs aimed at fast-tracking their economic participation, to global supplier inclusion and diversity initiatives.

The advisory council offers insight and expertise to WEConnect International South Africa. Specifically it focuses on governance and oversight of yearly activities of WEConnect International South Africa, including training programs, certification, and building and strengthening our local corporate membership base. These activities support our vision of providing women-owned businesses with access to local and global market opportunities.

Deaneesha Govender – Commodity Purchasing Manager for Intel South Africa; Chairperson, WEConnect International South Africa Advisory Council

Formerly a member of the EMEA Diversity team, driving Women at Intel initiatives specific to Intern and RCG Programs.

Currently a Commodity Purchasing Manager for Europe, Middle East and Africa.

Qualified and majored in International Business Communication and Business English.

Zakithi Zama – Public Government Affairs Manager for ExxonMobil Exploration & Production South Africa Limited (EMEPSAL)

Holds a Master of Business Leadership (MBL) from UNISA’s Graduate School of Business Leadership.

Vast expertise in Public Affairs, having held similar positions in the Petrochemical Industry for over 10 years.

Wealth of experience having worked with women empowerment programs aimed at fast-tracking their economic participation.

Jolene Catherine Classen – Sourcing Manager for Cummins Inc.Africa

Has 19 year’s procurement experience across a full spectrum of industries including FMCG, Mining, Telecommunication and Automotive Industries.

Category Manager at Rio Tinto Management Services prior to joining Cummins.

A certification member of the South African Diversity Council and also a certified member of the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply.


Linda Basson – Head of Procurement for Accenture South Africa

Head of Procurement for Accenture in South Africa, Botswana, Nigeria, Kenya and Ghana.

Coordinates procurement category management activities across EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) region for the Facilities and Services Spend Category.

Contributes to global supplier inclusion and diversity initiatives using her experience gained in leading a number of BBBEE initiatives in South Africa.