Meet the Changemakers
Co-Founder and Managing Director
Gerda is passionate about women’s rights and gendered development. In her early twenties she dropped out of university to join Women's Information Centre, a local NGO working on women’s rights and development in the post-conflict country of Georgia. One of the biggest takeaways of her experience was the challenges of modern day colonialism in the development aid space.
Eager to explore how development aid and financing could be done differently, Gerda has focused her career on building and scaling CSR efforts, organisations, and philanthropic foundations. From her on-the-ground experience in Georgia to working as the Deputy Executive Director at UN Women Sweden, Gerda brings strategic knowledge and expertise on both development work internationally as well as regionally in Sweden.
"It's an incredible journey that we have embarked upon. I'm grateful to have co-founded The Case For Her with Wendy and Cristina, two of the most inspiring people I have met. As system entrepreneurs we arrange convenings and support and fund otherwise ignored or overseen areas of women's health."
Beyond her work at The Case For Her Gerda is the Chair of the Mitt Alby foundation, Chair of 1325 Policy Group, on the board of East African e-commerce company Kasha, and on the jury for the feminist film prize The Anna Award.
Gerda has a BA in Urban and Regional Planning and a Masters in Development Politics from Stockholm University.
Cristina has dedicated herself to improving the lives of women and girls. Her focus on menstrual health and other underfunded areas of women's health is owing to the education, health, water, sanitation and gender equality aspects women's health cuts across. Cristina believes that without funding these areas, the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals are unreachable.
Cristina's dedication to the subject was inspired by Bill Gates, who, in a commencement speech in 2007, asked: "Should our best minds be dedicated to our biggest problems? Should the world’s most privileged people worry about the lives of the world’s least privileged? Don’t let complexity stop you. Be activists. Take on big inequities. It will be one of the greatest experiences of your life."
Cristina has a background working in the bio-tech industry for Baxter International and, following an MBA, worked in the management consulting industry. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Tufts University, a Masters in Biotechnology from Northwestern and an MBA from The Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College.
In 2010, Cristina launched Giving Wings in Stockholm, Sweden. The foundation’s work is focused on women and girl’s education and healthcare with a specialization in East Africa and Southeast Asia. She is one of the founding members of Maverick Collective, a global community of strategic philanthropists and informed advocates created by PSI in partnership with Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Cristina is also a board member of AFRIpads in Uganda and Acumen.
Beyond her work as a women’s health advocate, Cristina is a founding partner at Influence Film, supporting the production of feature length documentary films and growing new audiences for them through Influence Film Club.
Wendy believes that gender equality is a human right and has long been a champion of the health and education of women and girls. She brings an analytical skill set to The Case For Her, gained through a career as a project manager and analyst in the financial services industry.