This week’s Women Crush is fairly new to my list of women I admire. It all started when I went to my mailbox and the January 2014 issue of Entrepreneur was inside. As soon, as I looked at the cover it was an instantaneous crush. My first thought, “She is so beautiful.” Besides, her looks, I knew she was someone I was going to admire, I mean she is on the cover of Entrepreneur. Obviously, she is making boss moves.
Leila Janah is the founder of Samasource, a non-profit that creates living wage digital jobs for women and youths in emerging markets. These markets include: sub- Saharan Africa, southern Asia and the Caribbean. The company employs 4,000 people across the globe.
Janah grew up in San Pedro, Los Angeles, California where she attended the California Academy of Mathematics and Science. There she won a college scholarship at 16, but convinced them to let her spend it teaching in Ghana. In Ghana, she taught English as part of the American Field Service Exchange student group. She attended Harvard University where she graduated with a degree in African Development Studies. She worked briefly in the corporate world before she left to start her company. In 2008, she launched Samasource
Janah says that she was inspired to start a company when she was meeting with clients in Mumbai. There she befriended a young call-center employee who commuted each day from his home in Dharavi (the slum featured in Slumdog Millionaire).
In 2011, Janah co-founded Samahope, the first crowdfunding site for medical treatments in developing countries.
Last year, Janah started SamaUSA, a pilot program that offers 80-hour online boot camp to community –college students in low-income areas around San Francisco and Merced, California, and helps them find work.
Leila Janah is beautiful, intelligent, a humanitarian, an inspiration to make a difference, and just an all around worthy woman of my admiration. If you want to learn more about Leila Janah: visit her site, read her blog, and learn all about the organizations she is involved with.
Oh, if you are wondering sama is the Sanskrit word for equal.
Who is your Women Crush Wednesday?
Women Crush Wednesday is dedicated to all the women who I admire. I am ‘attracted’ to these women because they are not only beautiful; they possess qualities that make them worthy of my adoration. They are go-getters, driven, and handling their business. They make chasing your dreams look effortless (though, I know it is a road filled with a few bumps and potholes) and on top of all these things they radiate style. These women are more than a silly ‘girl crush’ to me. They are my inspiration.