Issued by: Staff writer Joan Hendricks
SA Women Rise To The Occasion. A few weeks ago, news broke about Mandisa Mfeka becoming South Africa’s first black female combat pilot but since then there have been a number of similar announcements celebrating SA’s women achieving top positions in their respective industries.
We do a round-up of four amazing women who were also celebrated this past week.
Lieutenant Gillian Malouw
Lieutenant Gillian Malouw was announced as the first-ever South African female officer that’s able to navigate a submarine. She is also the first woman in Africa and also one of very few across the globe.
Malouw reportedly told Briefly that she applied to be a submarine officer because she loves the sea so much and wanted to serve her country. Malouw, who grew up in Port Elizabeth, also shared that she wants to advance to be the commander one day.
Chelsea van Wyk
This 25-year-old mother from Eerste River has become South Africa’s first female Audi master technician. Van Wyk told IOL that while studying physiotherapy at UWC she was offered an apprenticeship at Audi Centre in Somerset West and had to choose between her studies at UWC or the opportunity of a lifetime. “I decided to go for the apprenticeship at Audi Centre Somerset West. After a while, it felt like I did one of the craziest things in the world as I literally knew nothing about cars,” she said.
She started at in 2012 and later completed her trade test and qualified as a motor technician. In 2016, she started her training at Audi Training Academy, and two years later she completed her training and qualified as an Audi master and diagnostic technician.
Marketing manager at Audi Centre Somerset West, Werner van Wyk, said Van Wyk was a dedicated employee. “We’re extremely proud of her on achieving this milestone in her career and thankful to have such a remarkable woman in our team,” he said.
Former 5FM radio DJ, Poppy Ntshongwana has been announced as Wanderers Stadium’s first female stadium announcer. Sports24 reports that with a Twitter following of over 224,000, she has been tasked with igniting and informing those present in an effort to enhance the game even more.
Ntshongwana said: “It is a big deal for me: I would like to say that it’s an absolute honour and I am excited for the challenge. It’s T20 cricket which means that it will be fast paced and energetic and exciting; and I hope that as the DJ and stadium announcer I can bring that same energy to the cricket and this particular format. So, I am super excited and delighted to be on board to see how it all unfolds. Thank you, Lions for the opportunity!”
The Marketing and Communications Manager for Central Gauteng Lions and Highveld Lions, Wanele Mngomezulu, says they are happy with their choice. “You can’t help but love Poppy – she inspires, ignites and is informed of the game: she will be our asset that is for sure. Present for this season’s home games, we have contracted Poppy to be our stadium voice: a warm, friendly character whom I believe is a super signing for us.”
Palesa Mokubung has made history as the first African designer to collaborate with Swedish fashion retailer H&M. With her signature Mantsho label, Mokubung told City Press she received a call six months ago from H&M SA, saying that they have been sitting with their global team and that she was on a short list of designers they are looking to collaborate with for their first African collaboration.
“Never did I think I would have a collection that would be available in South African stores as well as flagship stores in the US, UK, France, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Belgium, Mexico, Chile and Israel.” Mokubung’s H&M collection consists of 14 garments and 10 accessories, and will cost between R559 and R1,500.