The good ancestor: lessons earned

by Sonia Díez

Saturday 18 13:00 – 14:00 Big Yurt ◼︎ Talks

About Sonia Díez

Founder of @Wakanalake with her daughter Julia Catalán in 2016, “a nature classroom” located in the Alcornocales Natural Park to promote the interaction of young people and adults with the local ecosystem and demonstrate the importance of nature and experiences in the development and well-being of people.

Sonia Díez, named as one of the 25 most influential people in Spain in the field of education, is a mother of three, a teacher, psychologist with an MBA from the Business School and PhD in Economics and Business Administration. In addition she also holds several postgraduate accreditations from Harvard University.

Her creative, curious and persistent identity has allowed her to explore different contexts and disciplines in the active search for solutions and improvements in all areas of life. Not surprisingly, social and educational innovation has always been a constant in her professional career as a teacher, director, entrepreneur and divulgator. When she was just 19 years old, she applied for an extraordinary permit to carry out an internship for her degree in Education in the U.S. and developed a bilingual program for Saint Mary’s Hall School in San Antonio, TX. Once completed her graduate studies, she launched the first online business school in Spain for Grupo Vértice, which expanded to five continents (with an annual turnover of 24 million euros).

As a teacher, she has worked at all educational levels, including teaching subjects related to Leadership, Strategy and Organizational Development at the MBA of the University of Malaga and at the School of Business Administration (EAE).

She has been director of educational centers and founder of one of them: Colegio Internacional Torrequebrada (Torrequebrada International School), in Benalmádena, Málaga.

As an entrepreneur, she is the owner and promoter of several companies and projects: in addition to Colegio Internacional Torrequebrada (Torrequebrada International School), there is the Europa School (in Getxo, Biscay), SDG-Certificate, Wakana Earth Project (Los Alcornocales, Cadiz) and the ESC Vocational training School which, together with Laliga and the NBA, will open its doors in Madrid in 2023. Wherever she goes, Sonia sees opportunities for social development through education in what she calls “possibilism”, launching projects with the intention of showing and prototyping new formats, avoiding standardization and calling for action.

This conviction became her purpose in life ten years ago when, after overcoming pancreatic cancer, she reformulated her business strategy, making it more organic and in line with the principles that should rule one’s life for better development and well-being: the cultivation of mutual trust, recognition, development and enhancement of legitimate differences and talent within organizations, and a sense of brotherhood and co-responsibility.