The IEDF National Directors


In addition to being the Chairperson of the Informal Economy Development Forum, David serves as the Director of Step Ahead Educare, the Director of eLearn-SA and the Co-Owner of SEAT Academy. With nearly 16 years’ experience in Business Development, he is highly skilled at developing and implementing growth opportunities within and between organisations. He demonstrates visionary leadership, encourages innovative thinking, and empowers his team to deliver high quality results.

His current portfolio demands that he plans, develop, implement and direct IEDF’s operational and financial performance. David is a leader with a recognition-based mindset and believes that organisational performance is a journey, and not an event. Therefore, he facilitates the development and implementation of IEDF initiatives, and analyses the impact of their long-term growth. Furthermore, his role within the IEDF also involves creating, improving, implementing and enforcing policies and procedures that will improve operational and financial effectiveness of IEDF.

Using his background in industrial engineering, David spearheaded the first digital communications platform for South Africa’s largest labour unions, and successfully designed and launched a communications platform for the South African Informal Traders Alliance which was used to engage approximately 2,5 million members.

David envisions the IEDF as game-changers, and the catalysts for much needed transformation in South Africa.


After10 years in Branding & Marketing and 5 years in Events & Project Management in both South African and International markets, Chantal Maxim, Co-Founder of EI Management, left the corporate world to achieve new purpose. In January 2022, she joined the Informal Economy Development Forum as National Business Development Director. She is a leader with a proven success record at Senior Management level, having managed global marketing teams across various categories over the past 15 years.

She is proficient at all IEDF’s brand building processes from the development of long term Global Strategic Plans, Budget Marketing Analysis, Competitor Profiling, Annual Marketing Plans, Sales and Promotional Processes and Volume Target Setting.

Chantal also leads a Project Management Unit where her expertise allows her team to monitor project plans, schedules, budgets and expenditures effectively. Her Projects Team participates in stakeholder meetings where they ensure that project deadlines are met in a timely manner.

Chantal Maxim believes in achieving results through empowering people with a strong emphasis on coaching and on-the-job development. She values the power of diverse teams and multi-cultural work environments and enjoys working with individuals from different cultures.


Paul has a larger-than-life presence that commands any room he enters and is driven by a passionate resolve to serve others. His commitment to service is reflected in his professional achievements: during his time at POPCRU, he successfully championed the Provincial Arbitration Unit, dealing with all matters at Bargaining Councils and Labour Court and was also involved with the successful design and implementation of COSATU’s National Education & Organising programmes. In addition, he spearheaded international collaborations between International Police Association (IPA) Secretariats World-Wide, and served a successful five-year term on the POLMED Board of Trustees

As the National Director of Informal Economy Support, Paul actively works with National Association leaders and other community partners to collaborate on participation in IEDF campaigns; he implements national strategic programmes to grow the IEDF’s membership database, and he reviews the organization’s constitution, noting possible changes to be introduced. 

Paul measures success through growth and development, therefore he believes that constructive engagement and coalition-building are integral to the development of the IEDF.


Yolanda is an experienced Human Resource Specialist providing professional support and advice to IEDF Directors and Managers. As the IEDF’s National Director of Human Capital, she firmly believes that while not every company requires a full-time in-house HR Officer, every company does however require the services of a highly trained Talent Sourcing & Skills Development expert from time to time.

Her areas of expertise for the past 22 years have included: an extensive knowledge of matters relating to HR and Skills Development in South Africa; Talent Sourcing; Psychometric Assessments; Workforce Management and Negotiation. Her role within the IEDF involves providing overall direction of human resources operations and support across all employee types. This includes interpretation of IEDF HR policies, providing consultation and advice on HR issues and concerns, and developing and implementing HR strategies and plans within the work unit.

Yolanda displays excellent organisation and problem-solving skills – no task is too great for her to handle.  Her friendly disposition and open-door policy approach allows for effective management of relationships among the staff. She is committed to creating an efficient and rewarding company culture that will benefit the IEDF.


As the Chief Operating Officer, John the daily operations of the IEDF and ensures that the company meets its long term objectives. He credits his years of teaching for equipping him with managerial and problem-solving skills that are essential within his position. In addition to being the COO of the IEDF, John currently serves as the Academic Director, Material Developer and the CEO of Seat Academy, an online tutoring programme. Being a teacher and having to manage large groups of people helped him develop the ability to deal with problems with sensitivity and diplomacy. His leadership is focused on concise communication and exercising patience and flexibility.

Prior to joining the IEDF, John also served as a Partner in charge of Marketing at Boipelo Holdings where he was responsible for setting up business plans and designing marketing strategies. Within that role he acquired the ability to manage his time and organise his day in order to produce the most effective results. Furthermore, he has developed the skill to assess the needs of a business to determine how best to service its clients. In his position, he applies creative and logical thinking to produce the most favourable outcomes for the organisation.

John states that his best attribute is his integrity, and he believes in staying true to his word. He constantly shows initiative and enjoys working with diverse groups of people to towards a specific goal.

IEDF National Managers


A two-week Events Management course during her gap year after matriculating in 2015 ignited a prevailing love for the industry. Following a three-month internship at the Community Chest of the Western Cape and a waitressing opportunity in Dubai, Bernita pursued her diploma in Events Management at CPUT. After graduating she gained some work experience, but a day spent scrolling through her phone looking for a job opening led her to the doors of the IEDF and the rest, as they say, is history. She describes herself as determined, painstakingly organized and thrives in a structured environment. As the National Events Manager, Bernita has an instrumental role within the organization – the skillful execution of events is key to the objectives of the IEDF and she intends to meet those expectations.


Rochelle joined the IEDF team equipped with 18 years of experience having worked for the First National Bank (FNB) in various roles. Her most prominent role was as a Sales and Service Consultant in which she was required to develop and implement strategies to maximise sales and increase business profitability. She walks with a purposeful stride and always has an ear to the ground, ready to assist wherever she can. Those trademark qualities make her perfect for her position as the National Manager of Informal Business Support where she provides assistance in developing informal businesses through funding, and facilitates the promotion of IEDF services to these businesses. Despite her diminutive stature, Rochelle is a force to be reckoned with and a great addition to the team.


With a BA in Psychology, Woman & Gender Studies and Sociology, Vuyo (or Vovo as she is affectionately known) is a multi-faceted woman who adapts easily when confronted with new challenges. She serves as the National Manager of Informal Economy Support where she assists in providing support to informal associations. Vuyo previously worked at Ilitha Labantu, an organization based in Gugulethu, Cape Town where she was involved in developing programmes to assist women and children affected by violence. This experience informed her passion towards developing initiatives that empower women and youth. In addition, working at the Western Cape branch of COSATU afforded her the experience of collaborating with people with different backgrounds. As her experience reflects, Vuyo possesses good communication and organization skills, and has a person-centered approach to her work – traits that are essential to the execution of her duties


Veronica boasts an extensive and varied work history that spans 41 years. She has worked within the retail industry gaining market experience selling sewing machines; she rendered services as a Training Co-ordinator at various instititutions and has previously served as a lecturer at the College of Cape Town for nearly 17 years. Despite her experience, Veronica displays a strong willingness to learn from others, but she is always available to provide sage advice. As the National Training Manager, she ensures that skills development programmes within the IEDF are highly capacitated and operate efficiently. Delivering high quality service is of paramount importance and she is meticulous and gives her undivided attention to whatever she is tasked with.


After matriculating in 2017, Monique completed a Human Resource Management course at the College of Cape Town. Thereafter, she worked as a caregiver providing assistance to people with physical limitations; she assisted with HR management work as a Sales Consultant and provided her services as a Legal Receptionist where she was responsible for assisting clients and performing various clerical tasks. As the National Projects Manager for the IEDF, Monique is responsible for all types of projects from simple activities such as diary management to more complex plans such as project monitoring. She works closely with the Business Development Director to prepare comprehensive action plans, including resources, timeframes, and budgets for projects. Monique has excellent time management and communication skills and collaborates with clients and internal teams to deliver results on deadlines. Monique is characterised by her diligent approach to her work and fulfils her tasks with lively determination.

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