Sallyann Della Casa

Founder of Growing Leaders Foundation and GLEAC
Summary

Sallyann Della Casa is a tech startup founder, a former lawyer, author, TEDx speaker, teacher, and curriculum developer in human transferable skills such as critical thinking, leadership, judgment, and decisions etc. as it applies to emerging areas such as Web 3, Fintech, Sustainability etc. reaching out to global  learners  with her unconventional ideology. She recently launched the world’s first utility NFT of an industry expert’s time.  

Sallyann is currently the Founder of GLEAC, a platform that co-pilots learning, innovation and problem solving with industry experts using cutting edge neuro-science and behavioural science, A.I. and Machine Learning for which she has a pending patent making her one of 4% of women globally as a sole founder. GLEAC powers the Unicef YOMA platform in Africa, it powers the JIO phone company platform in India and was also the official APP for Skills of the Future at Expo 2020.

As a lawyer, Sallyann practised law for almost a decade focused on business transactions, estate planning, and real-estate. She began her teaching and mentoring career at 24 as a volunteer at KAPOW, a US government life skill program developed by the National Child Labor Committee and approved by the School Board of Florida. She was volunteer of the year 7 years in a row.. 

She published ‘Who Will I Become’, a love letter to the 8 year old within all of us. It is about our own becoming over and over again until our last breath.. 

Recently, she dropped the world's first NFT that tokenizes industry experts and is building the first Metaverse Living Human Library of wisdom with the NFT experts profiles ( think Wikipedia our neighbourhood library  in Metaverse and interactive).

In 2011, Sallyann founded  the Growing Leaders Foundation. In a partnership with the UNDP, thousands of at-risk youths and adults have benefitted in financial literacy and her Foundation’s work delivering soft transferable skills such as communication, entrepreneurship etc.  in the Caribbeans, Latin America, and the MENA region. She has worked with reputed companies such as Nestle, DP World, NBAD, Repsol, Mubadala, Careem, etc in the region and has delivered soft skills to over 25,000 youths and adults through her Foundation in the last 6 years.

Sallyann was Curator of People and Culture at a C-suite level at Careem to help stabilise the workforce and shape its organisational culture in 2016. 

Biography

Sallyann’s family, who is from Trinidad and Tobago, emigrated to Canada when she was 11, and Sallyann was sent to boarding school in Switzerland. When she graduated from high school at 16, Sallyann took her first three degrees, in political science, Italian and French, all at the same time. She got a professional doctorate degree in law from St. Thomas University of Law in 2000. At 21, Sallyann opened her own law firm in Florida and spent the next nine years practicing law in various areas from estate planning to corporate and real estate law. 

In 2004, at the age of 24, she spent most of her time volunteering as a teacher for the US government life skills programme KAPOW, which was developed by the US National Child Labor Committee and approved by the School Board of Florida.

Her teaching ideas were later incorporated into the curriculum for all teachers to use and Sallyann was named volunteer of the year for seven years in a row. Despite these achievements, by the time she hit 30, Sallyann felt she was not living up to her potential.

Sallyann closed her law practice, notched up another couple of degrees (in urban planning and property development), and returned to Trinidad and Tobago in 2009 for the first time in 15 years when her father died. There she began writing curricula in leadership and testing them out on communities of mostly at-risk, disadvantaged young people. 

In 2010, Sallyann set up the Growing Leaders Foundation to take the curricula she had written and roll them out on a global scale, starting with schools in Trinidad and Tobago. The curriculum is focussed to awaken the potential of youths and adults in the areas of human soft skills. Her Corporate Social Education training focuses on redefining the role of corporations in education and her School programs focus on leadership.

Sallyann licensed the programme to NGOs and social enterprises for free and to companies for a $4,000 annual fee. More than 20,000 children have completed her programme in the last two years.

In 2012, she worked with motivational guru Robin Sharma, the author of The Monk Who Sold his Ferrari, who she brought to Trinidad and Tobago for a siores of events for her Foundation. That encounter and collaboration led to Tobin recommending her to b ATIC (now Mubadala Technologies) to train their staff and design youth based Stem Curriculum for what would become Tech Quesy. 

She moved to Downtown Dubai three years ago with her hotelier partner. She works for UAE companies such as telecoms firm Du to cater to their leadership development needs, such as how to tackle cyber-bullying. In 2014, she published a book on leadership called ‘Who Will I Become’.

Between 2015 and 2016, Sallyann hosted videos and lecture series to fill the gaps in what I was seeing being taught to ensure start-ups got what they needed to thrive. There were 3 lecture series: Presentation Skills using a Pitch Deck, Standing Out- How to Define your Zag, and Design Thinking and the 10 Innovation Types. I ran these sessions at Abu Dhabi University, Masdar Institute, Impact Hub, Lok Jack Business School, and many other start-up hubs. 

In 2016, she served as the only female at a C-suite level at Careem to help stabilise the workforce and shape its organisational culture. Careem was purchased by Uber for 3.1 b in Jan 2020. 

On Oct 15th, 2022, she dropped the world's first NFT tokenising industry experts' time on and is building the first Metaverse Living Museum of Human wisdom with the NFT experts' profiles ( think Wikipedia in Metaverse and interactive). 

A Harvard alum with degrees in Law, Organisational Behaviour, and Urban Planning, Sallyann is the Founder of GLEAC, a mentorship and learning platform that shortens the distance between you and expertise. GLEAC powered the World Fair in Dubai, upskills African youth on the YOMA the UNICEF Platform and also empowers learners on the JIO platform across India. 

Her life's work is about inclusion and the signalling of human skills such as creative thinking, communication, judgment, and decision-making etc.  


Vision

Being from a multicultural background, Sallyann has had an experience across various countries and cultures. In a recent interview with Dinis Guarda for his YouTube podcast series, she said:

“I knew at a very young age how to survive in any part of the world, and how to connect with people. I think it's so important for young people to be able to stand in the shoes of anyone with a worldview and understand and be empathetic. Live and work and solve problems in the world today.”

Speaking of the driver behind her endeavours, she told Dinis:

“The common thread for me has always been human ingenuity and human wisdom, and how we showcase that.”

It was this ideology that led her to establish GLEAC, a tech platform that helps discover and strengthen human soft skills & behaviour


Recognition and Awards
Sallyann Della Casa is one of the 4% of women globally who has a patent pending method and algorithm (for measuring soft skills) as a sole inventor. In the last two years, more than 20,000 children have completed the programme she developed at the Growing Leaders Foundation. Her company, GLEAC, powered the World Fair in Dubai, upskills African youth on the YOMA the UNICEF Platform and also empowers learners on the JIO platform across India.

References
Sallyann Della Casa
Occupation
Tech startup founder, a former lawyer, author, TEDx speaker, teacher, and curriculum developer
Education
Doctor of Law (JD, St. Thomas University College of Law), Community and Regional Planning (University of Miami), Master's Certification in Organisational Behaviour (Harvard University)
Social Media
Fri Mar 01 2024
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