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2018 Alumni Awards

2018 Alumni Awards 

Nelson Mandela University Alumni Awards recognise alumni who have gone the distance and beyond in their various fields, to the benefit of society at local, provincial, national and international level. A number of outstanding nominations were received by the Alumni Association's Executive Committee and in the spirit of the University's values, it is proud to present its 2018 recipients.

Awards recipients from left: Solomon Mudege (FIFA Master 2010), Kurt Pakendorf (BProc 1991), Dr Randall Jonas (PhD 2014), Amanda Antony (ND Music Ed 2015), Prof Hugh Jeffery (ND Technology Industrial Eng Machine Systems 1988), Hiten Parmar (MTech 2011), Kurt Kannemeyer (BProc 1999). David Brown (BCom Hons 2001) received his award in absentia.


BCom Honourss graduate (2001) David Brown is the Vice-President: Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) at Amazon. He currently leads the various EC2 Compute, Networking and Load Balancing teams, building and maintaining cloud-based services used by several of the Internet’s largest global domains, including many that are accessed by millions on a daily basis. Amazon is an international online shopping store, selling anything from the earth’s biggest selection of books, magazines, music, DVDs, videos, electronics, computers and software to apparel and accessories.
The company recorded a fourth quarter turnover of $60.5billion in February 2018. Prior to his current role at Amazon, David held numerous positions, including Director: Software Development and Software Development Manager. He was also employed at Mosaic Software as a Software Development Manager and Senior Developer in Cape Town.
BProc (1999) graduate, Kurt Kannemeyer is based
in Spring Valley, New York, where he is the Chief Executive Officer
at the Haitian American Cultural and Social Organization, Inc. He has
over 18 years of experience in leadership roles in both the
non-profit and corporate sectors, and is a writer and sought-after
speaker both nationally and internationally. Some of his previous positions include Chief Development Officer at St Christopher’s, Inc. in New York, where he also served as Director of Internal Affairs, Senior Paralegal, and Senior Director of Camp Services. Prior to this, he served as the Chief Compliance Officer for Central News Agency in Port Elizabeth.
Kannemeyer also serves as a Director of the International & National Fellows Program of the Fellows of the Academy (Greenburgh North-Castle UFSD) and plays an active role within the leadership of Westchester Alumni Association. He serves on several boards and has received a number of awards, including the Rising Star Award from the Business Council of Westchester and The Haitian Resource Center Community Partner Award. He also featured on the “Top 25 Inspirational Stories” on The Today Show in the USA. He is a passionate advocate for social justice.
                                     KURT PAKENDORF
Kurt Pakendorf graduated with a BProc (1991) and is currently the Chief Strategy Officer and General Counsel for Face IT Limited in London, UK and California, USA. He has led and negotiated the establishment of one of the world’s largest Professional Counter Strike: Global Offensive Professional eSports leagues with 20 professional teams and $3.5million in prize money. He is also the Director of Esports Championship Series CS Limited London and the Founder, Director and Co-owner of Anicus Law Limited, which is a boutique, international legal services firm offering legal and strategic business consulting services. He is the current Co-Founder and a Managing Partner of The Sable Accelerator in the UK, which is a trusted expert network of expatriate South Africans giving back to their country in different forms. Prior to this, he was the Chief Executive Officer and Director of MobileWave Group plc in London and the Vice-President and General Counsel at Havok.com Inc. in the USA. From 2000 to 2002 he served as a Legal Officer with the United Nations Peacekeeping Mission in Kosovo. Pakendorf has also co-authored the UK Current Law Statutes and Petroleum Law 1998.


Amanda Antony is popularly known by her stage name Amanda Black. She graduated with a National Diploma in Music Education in 2015. In the same year she was a contestant in the South African Idols competition, becoming the fans’ favourite for Season 11 of the talent show, in which she made it to the top 7. A year later, Amanda released her studio album Amazulu, which was certified platinum after only three weeks following release. Her hit single "Amazulu", meaning 'the Heavens', was nominated for several South African and international category music awards. She earned two Metro FM Awards and received four South African Music Awards. During 2017, she released her single "Kahle" receiving great airplay on local radio stations as well as reaching over 1 million views on YouTube.



Hiten Parmar’s Nelson Mandela University qualifications include the National Diploma (2005), BTech (2007) and MTech (2011) specialising in Electrical Engineering, as well as a Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration (2016). He is currently the Director for the national uYilo eMobility Technology Innovation Programme hosted at Nelson Mandela University, where some of his key areas include Business Development, Stakeholder Engagement, Government Lobbying and Thought Leadership. Prior to this, he was Deputy Director as well as Senior Engineer: Electric Vehicle Systems and Infrastructure. Before his current employment, he was an Electrical Engineer at the Volkswagen Group and also tenured at the University of Applied Sciences Wolfsburg in Germany and worked at BC Automation in South Africa.Hiten’s passion extends across contributing to advancements within industry globally, through the deployment of technological interventions to solve major societal, economic and competitiveness challenges.He also serves as the Secretariat of the Electric Vehicle Industry Association, and liaison for multiple working groups including NAAMSA, SABS and SASGI.



Zimbabwean-born Solomon Mudege graduated with a BCom HMS: Sport & Recreation (2005), BCom Hons Business Management (2007) and a Nelson Mandela University/FIFA/CIES Executive Programme in Sport Management certificate (2010). Later in 2010, he graduated with a FIFA Master qualification – an International Master in Management, Law and Humanities of Sport, which must be completed at three international universities: De Montfort University in Leicester (UK), SDA Bocconi School of Management in Milan (Italy) and the University of Neuch√Ętel (Switzerland). Thereafter, he began his career working for FIFA in Switzerland, starting as Master Trainee, followed by Marketing Alliances Manager and now Senior Development Manager.







Dr Jonas (MA 1998, PhD 2014) served as an Executive Committee Member of the former UPE Alumni Association and was the first president of the former Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Alumni Association. He served as the Deputy President of Convocation until the merger of the two structures in 2013 to form a new single alumni governance structure which he chaired until 2018. Dr Jonas is recognised for his service to his alma mater representing the interests of alumni on Council and his leadership role of alumni governance structures.





Prof Jeffery graduated with a National Diploma in Technology:
Industrial Engineering Machine Systems in 1998 and was Dean of the
Engineering Faculty at the former PE Technikon. He served as a
member of Council of the University from 2005 to 2018 as well as a
member of the Alumni Association Executive Committee for the same
period. As a proud ambassador of the University, Prof Jeffery’s
professional affiliations include being an Honorary Fellow of
SAIMechE and a member of the Institute of Professional Engineering
Technologists and Chamber of Engineering Technology. Some of his
contributions to professional associations, societies and councils
locally and internationally include: Past President of SAIMechE
(2005-2007), Past Regional Chairperson for SAIMechE (Eastern
Cape), Chairperson of the Student Merit Bursary Awards Committee
as well as being a member of among others, The Council and
Education Committee of SAIMechE, the Metal Industries Training
Board and the Aerospace Industries Training Board.

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