Meet Nicole Pitter Patterson
Nicole Pitter Patterson
Co-Founder, Director SheLeadsIT NGO|Caribbean Girls Hack
Member ITU EQUALS Skills Coalition, Switzerland
A senior international development advisor with 20+ years of expertise, Nicole has focused her career in international development for micro-businesses, women’s economic empowermentand #techforgood advocacy.
Nicole is Co-Founder/Director of SheLeadsIT – a social enterprise focused on women’s economic empowerment with the premier initiative Caribbean Girls Hack – focused on bridging the gender digital divide in the Caribbean, engaging and upskilling girls and young women across a total of 16 countries since 2017. It has engaged 5,000 participants to date, in collaboration with RSC Tech Clubs.
Since 2018, she has served as a member of the International Telecommunications Union (Switzerland) EQUALS Global Partnership digital working groups – the EQUALS Skills Coalition and the EQUALS Policy Working Group, focused on designing global initiatives to bridge the digital gender divide, and recently served as a judge for the global IBM #CodetheCurve #tech4good competition.
In May 2019, she received the #FacesforEqualityaward by Global Affairs Canada, recognizing the work of SheLeadsIT – Caribbean Girls Hack, for outstanding contribution to the empowerment of women and girls in Technology and Innovation in Jamaica.
SheLeadsIT –Caribbean Girls Hack is a Grantee of the Equals Digital Skills Fund 2020, and Global Affairs Canada –Canada Fund for Local Initiatives Jamaica 2020 and 2021. She has served as Senior Advisor on gender, trade and economic development for the Work and Opportunities for Women Helpdesk on Manufacturing Africa (£70m program). The WOW Helpdesk, is a research advisory and knowledge service supporting DFID and wider UK (FCDO) Economic Development programs and policies to improve outcomes on women’s economic empowerment (WEE).
She has also served as the lead Technical Adviser to the Ghana National Board for Small Scale Industries launching the first national SME business conference identifying a specialized program for women’s economic empowerment. Her expertise in the creative industries, spans over 12 years working across the interior design and fashion industries, specializing in the use of indigenous materials in Asia and Africa, mentoring emerging African design brands, forging partnerships between leading design institutes (Parsons New York) with industry partners in Africa and Asia, brokering design collaborations and opening new sales markets through e-commerce buyers and trade fairs.
Nicole also serves as Speaker at international conferences including Africa Fashion Guide; and is an Advisory Board Member of INDEGO Africa a social enterprise for artisans; she served as Board VP -Partnerships at Overseas Women in International Trade (OWIT), Geneva; and is an Advisory Board member of the Women’s Entrepreneurial Network Caribbean (WENC).
She also serves as a member of the Gender, Social Inclusion and Trade (GST) Working Group of the UK Trade and Investment Advocacy Fund (TAF2+) and is a member of the Gender Declaration Working Group, Geneva.
Nicole has worked with international donor agencies – USAID Washington/Caribbean and the UN in Switzerland, funded by DFID, USAID, SECO & GIZ, and has successfully managed a combined project portfolio of US$20 million, working with public and private sector partners in the Caribbean, Africa and Asia.
She holds an M.A. in Regional Economic Development at Northeastern University, U.S.A., with a B.A. in Economics at the University of the West Indies, Jamaica.