Alyssa Jade McDonald - Baertl

Expert in Change Making

She grew up in a family of social entrepreneurs, who cared for rubber forests and raised cattle in the wild hills of Papua New Guinea and Australia. After university education and a decade ‘in corporate’, she returned to her family roots and created BLYSS chocolate, which harvests pure arriba nacionale cacao with 450 families in Ecuador. The enterprise works on the principles of agroecology and carries with it the traditions from 100 years of working with evolving communities that she learned from her family. The results are deeply berry-­nuanced chocolate vintages from two terroirs, and an assurance that they ARE the change their customers wish to see.

While creating BLYSS, Lyss was asked by baristas, sommeliers and foodies to teach them about chocolate, so she created expert chocolate training, which is available in Berlin at The Contemporary Food Lab and in Manila at the Centre For Culinary Arts. During all her work in social enterprise, farms, education programs, diversity leadership, waste reduction and recycling, she was asked constantly to help others also 'be ChangeMakers' themselves.

Lyss is also a keynote speaker at TED, is a guest lecturer on ChangeMaking at St Gallen University in Switzerland and is one of the ‘example startups’ for European ecopreneur industry bodies about ethical companies which actively lobbies for improved commercial standards of environmental and social care in business. She lives between Germany and Australia and is the wife of a Bavarian, daughter of Papua New Guinean, and mother of a small white dog called Blanco.

She speaks an Australian style of English, German which is more Denglish and a Spanish that makes grown men cry for the loss of phonetics. As of 2015, she is the new video blogger for the Huffington Post Germany about chocolate and social enterprise.

Presentation Topics

  • How to be a 'ChangeMaker'
  • Industry influence from 2 hands
  • Masters of Chocolate Connoisseurship, & The Kakao Diploma
  • MORE doesn?t have to be >more<
  • Why innovation and ethics are outdated business models and what the game changer of the future really is
  • How to BE the Change you wish to see
  • The 10 caracteristics of a Change Maker mindset and how to create this yourself

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