Dr Thomas Henry Brown (Tom)
Independent Non-Executive Director
BSc, HED, BEd, MEd, PhD
Appointed 9 October 2019
Tom has been involved in education for more than 28 years, both in contact and distance learning, and received his PhD in the field of distance learning in 1993. He serves on the Board of Directors for a number of companies and is Chairman of the DC Education Group.
Until recently, Tom was a Research Professor in the Institute for Open & Distance Learning, UNISA. He previously held various executive positions in both public and private higher education, including CEO of CTI Education Group, MD of Midrand Graduate Institute, and Deputy Director of Telematic Learning & Education Innovation at the University of Pretoria. He has been involved in consultancy work for several institutions in the fields of private higher education, distance learning, mobile learning, educational technology and technology-enhanced learning. Tom is also one of the founding directors of the International Association for Mobile Learning (IAmLearn).
Dr Christina Busisiwe Vilakazi (Busi)
BSc in Electrical Engineering, MSc in Engineering, DPhil (PhD) in Engineering Science
Busi has an MSc in engineering and a PhD in biomedical engineering as a Nelson Mandela Scholar from the University of Oxford in the United Kingdom. She is an innovative result-oriented research & development Leader with expertise in project management, strategy development and technology management and innovation management. She is a professional with a passion for the role that innovation and emerging technologies such as AI and big data can play in solving pressing challenges faced by South Africa and Africa in education and health and has a proven track record of leading and managing R&D projects in various sectors. She is currently part of the Eskom presidential task team advising the president and was a senior researcher at the CSIR.
Ms. Mokoka is a qualified Chartered Accountant (CA) SA with over 15 years of post-articles experience. She has sound public and private sector experience on various boards of companies, including Sanlam Limited, Sanlam Life Insurance Limited, Palabora MiningProprietary Limited, Rolfes Holdings Limited, amongst others. Ms. Mokoka is also the Audit and Risk Chairperson for Palabora Mining Proprietary Limited and Rolfes Holdings Limited.
Dr Rolf Heinrich Stumpf (Rolf)
BA (Mathematics and Statistics); Hons (Stats); MA (Stats); Ph.D (Stats)
Appointed 1 May 2017
Rolf was previously vice-chancellor and chief executive officer of the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University in Port Elizabeth, vice-rector at the University of Stellenbosch and the president and chief executive officer of the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC). Before that he was Deputy Director-General of the Department of National Education.
Rolf is the author of a number of scientific articles in the field of statistics (qualitative data analysis) and co-author of a book on graphical exploratory data analysis. He also authored and co-authored a large number of policy reports in the field of education, especially in higher education.
Pieter Nicolaas de Waal (Nico)
BEng (Mech), MBA
Nico holds an MBA from IESE Business School of the University of Navarre (Spain) and a B.Eng (in Mechanical Engineering) Cum Laude degree from the University of Stellenbosch. Nico joined the PSG Group in 2011 and currently serves as the chief executive officer of PSG Alpha Proprietary Limited. Prior to joining the PSG Group, Nico was an executive at SABMiller plc from 2008 to 2010. He also served as a management consultant at McKinsey & Company, Inc. from 2001 to 2007, specialising in strategy and operations.
Dr Christiaan Rudolph van der Merwe (Chris)
Chief Executive Officer
B. Prim (Ed), B.Ed, M.Ed (Cum Laude), PhD in Education
Appointed 1 July 2017
Chris accepted his first teaching post at Gene Louw Primary School (Gene Louw) in 1986. In 1993, whilst still teaching at Gene Louw, he started a closed corporation named “SkoolCor”, which produced electronic learning modules as a surrogate for text books, and today, the Shuttleworth Foundation use these modules as an integral part of their Open Source Methodology. In 1997, Chris became the deputy principal of Fanie Theron Primary School.
During 1998 Chris founded the Curro Private School in a church in Durbanville, which opened its doors with 28 learners. In 1999, he constructed Curro Durbanville’s campus and in January 2000 approximately 320 learners started the academic year on this new campus. Chris was the chief executive officer of Curro and grew this business to 138 schools, with 52 233 learners and a market capitalisation of approximately R20 billion. In 2017 Chris stepped down as chief executive officer of Curro to start STADIO but continues to serve as a non-executive director on the board of directors of Curro.
Samara Totaram (Samara)
Chief Financial Officer
Appointed as CFO on 1 January 2017, and officially appointed to the Board on 18 April 2017
Samara, a qualified chartered accountant, completed her articles with Deloitte & Touche (in South Africa and New York) and then spent 18 months at the Royal Bank of Scotland in London prior to joining PSG Capital in 2007. In 2010 Samara was appointed as a director of PSG Capital and was primarily involved in new listings, capital raisings and other commercial transactions, merger and acquisitions and general corporate finance consulting. In October 2010, she joined Thembeka Capital Limited (Thembeka), a PSG Group supported B-BBEE investment company, and was appointed as its managing director in 2013. Samara drove the unlocking of value for Thembeka’s black shareholders. Samara joined Curro in October 2014 as the managing director of the Meridian venture and also served as a member of the Curro executive committee until December 2016 before joining the executive management team of STADIO.
Dr Divya Singh (Divya)
Chief Academic Officer
BA (Law); LL.B (Cum Laude); LL.M; LL.D; Masters in Tertiary Education Management (with Honours)
Appointed as CAO on 1 February 2017, and officially appointed to the Board on 27 June 2017
Divya is an admitted advocate of the High Court of South Africa, having practiced for her own account for seven years. She is a Certified Ethics Officer by The Ethics Institute and the Executive Director of Globethics.net Southern Africa. Divya has been a professional academic for the past twenty-six years. Her last position was Vice Principal Advisory and Assurance Services at the University of South Africa (UNISA) where she was responsible for Legal Services, Risk and Compliance, the Ethics Office, Communications and Marketing and the Institutional Information Office (Data Protection and Privacy). Divya also served in the capacity of Registrar Governance as well as the Deputy Registrar, taking responsibility for institutional student administration. Divya’s research profile (in summary) includes more than 30 articles in accredited journals, ten book chapters, one book (co-edited), has presented numerous conference papers and keynote presentations, locally and globally. She has been the editor of two academic journals and an editor of Butterworths Judgment-Online (JOL). She has received awards domestically and internationally for academic contribution and community service and engagement, as well as stakeholder recognition.
Douglas Maitakhole Ramaphosa
MA Social Sciences
Appointed 9 March 2018
Douglas offers a wealth of experience, with more than 25 years of business experience through various director and board memberships, as well as holding various senior executive positions for a number of large organisations, including Transnet, ABSA and Anglo American. Previously, Douglas served as group executive of corporate affairs at Altron, was CEO of Bytes Healthcare Solutions and, prior to that, managing director of Bytes Specialised Solutions. He served on the board of Eskom Enterprises for five years and was director and chairperson of Rotek Industries. Douglas was appointed as an independent non-executive director of Curro Holdings Limited on 26 January 2018. He is also a non-executive director of EnviroServ, a waste-management company, as well as of the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA), and chairperson and director of Satori Tech Hub.
Khayelihle Sibusiso Sithole (Khaya)
Khaya qualified as a chartered accountant having completed his articles with the FirstRand group. Khaya has since lectured Financial Accounting and Taxation at various universities and was commissioned by the University of Cape Town to participate in the FASSET-funded Bukela Ufunde programme providing Financial Reporting lectures in African languages to students throughout South Africa. He has been a director, and programme managed, the Thuthuka Programme whilst lecturing and was the youngest academic member appointed to the Senate of University of KwaZulu Natal, the National Board of Directors for ABASA and the SAICA Eastern Region Council. Khaya is an editor of three textbooks, namely Graded Questions on Income Tax (Mitchell & Mitchell), Gripping GAAP (Service & Kolitz) and Gripping GAAP – Graded Questions (Service). His primary passion is the mentorship of students, the advancement of the profession amongst black communities and the promotion of principlebased teaching in Financial Reporting and he is a mentor on the Shanduka Black Umbrellas Programme which makes him responsible for the mentorship of start-up businesses and evaluation of business plans submitted to Shanduka and serves on the Advisory Panel for Shanduka Black Umbrellas. Khaya previously served on the executive committee of the SAICA Young CA Network in Gauteng and in 2016, became the second South African to be awarded the Academic Fellowship by the International Accounting Standards Board for 2017/18 in London. Since January 2017, Khaya has been a graduate student at the Said Business School at the University of Oxford, UK.
Renganayagee Kisten (Roji)
B.Admin; B.Admin (Hons); MDP (Stell. Bus. School); GMP (Harvard Bus. School)
Rojie has a B.Admin (Hons) degree from Stellenbosch Business School and completed the General Management Programme at Harvard Business School. Rojie spent most of her working career at Old Mutual group, including Nedcor Bank. Her work experience includes amongst others: Asset management in both listed and unlisted entities; Local and international capital raising for unlisted funds; Stakeholder management within South Africa and the rest of the African Continent; investor relations; and Managing enterprise development finance.
Andries Mellet (Dries)
Alternate Non-Executive Director to Nico de Waal
CA(SA), B Compt Hons
Dries qualified as a chartered accountant after completing his articles with PwC and has been working for the PSG Group since 2010. Dries was the financial director of mCubed Holdings Limited from October 2010 to February 2011 and Capevin Holdings Limited from April 2012 to November 2013. Dries served as secretary to the PSG Group Executive and joined the PSG Alpha team in 2012.