Keynote Speakers

The GeCCo competition provides the participants and all interested with outstanding world-class keynote speakers, experts in the field of virtual and global collaboration. Everyone is welcome to join and listen to the keynote speeches on current project management topics with a focus on virtual and/or multicultural teamwork.

Keynote speakers of GeCCo 2019/20


William R. Duncan (Malaysia) is President of Project Management Partners of Lowell, MA USA and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He has over forty years of management and consulting experience. He has helped clients in North America, the Middle East, Asia, Latin America, and Europe improve both organizational and individual competence in project management.

William was the primary author of the original (1996) version of A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge, and co-author and editor of the Amazon best-seller Sustainable Project Management: The GPM Reference Guide.

Among his many volunteer commitments is serving as International Certification Advisor for IPMA-Malaysia.


Devan Naidu (UK/South Africa) is PMO and Project Management Consultant, Project Management Trainer (PMI). Devan has extensive experience in Finance, Auditing and Project Management, both in South Africa and in the Middle East. He also has substantial experience in Business Process Management, Lean Manufacturing and Quality Management.

Devan has worked in numerous industries, ranging from Automotive, Airline, Petroleum, Banking, Communications, & Government. He has certifications from both PMI (USA) and APMG (UK) – and if often delivering seminars and webinars to the global project management community.

Key Competencies
• PMO set-up and management.
• Business Process Management & Lean Manufacturing
• Project, Program and Portfolio Management (PMI)
• Finance and Auditing

Organizations employed by
• Mercedes Benz South Africa
• Nedbank (South Africa)
• PriceWaterhouseCoopers
• Gulf Air (Bahrain)
• Shell Petroleum Refineries (SA)

Professional Experience & Key Projects Implemented
• Set-up and management of the PMO at ELIDZ
• Implementation of the SAP ERP at Mercedes Benz SA
• Implementation of the Oracle E-Business Suite at Gulf Air
• Management of the New Vehicle Model Introduction at Mercedes Benz SA
• Implementation of the Revenue Management System at Durban Municipality (South Africa)
• Management of the Business Process Management at Mercedes Benz SA and Gulf Air
• Implementation of the Microsoft Dynamics AX ERP at ELIDZ

Education & Professional Certifications
• Bachelor of Accounting Science (University of South Africa)
• MBA (Bucks New University, UK)


Ruth Pearce (USA) is President and founder of Project Motivator (ALLE LLC) offering project leadership services and training and coaching for project managers. She is a Certified Coach Trainer. With 25 years of project and program management experience in financial services, state government and non-profits, working with teams across the globe, her focus is developing skills in human factors enabling leaders to build empowered and engaged teams that deliver. Using character strengths and positive psychology, she helps project leaders and their teams feel better about work. They find their purpose. She is the author of Be A Project Motivator: Unlock the Secrets of Strengths Based Project Management.

Ruth speaks about social intelligence, character strengths and mindfulness to audiences online and in person and has reached over 20000 people worldwide to date. She has spoken at three live global PMI events as well as many PMI Chapter meetings. She also contributes to PMWorld360, Forbes magazine, and the project management platform She has been a guest on numerous podcasts and was interviewed by Dr Ryan Niemiec, Director of Education for the VIA Institute on Character.

Her motto is Be hopeful; Be strong; Be brave; Be Curious

Ruth’s signature strengths are Appreciation of Beauty & Excellence, Bravery, Curiosity, Fairness and Gratitude.


Marisa Silva (Portugal), the Lucky PM, is an experienced PMO and PPM advisor, educator, author, and international speaker, with a track record of establishing, embedding and maturing best-fit practices and building capabilities in complex organizations undergoing transformational business change. A passionate advocate of the value of PMOs as business partners and enablers of strategic change delivery, Marisa has developed her career from management consulting, with work experience gained internationally and across industries.

Marisa holds a MSc (with distinction) in Strategic Management of Projects from University College London (UCL), a BSc in Management, a specialization in Competitive Intelligence, and a PgDip in Foresight, Strategy and Innovation by ISEG (Lisbon). She is currently undertaking her PhD in Project Management at Alma Mater Europaea, on the topic of anti-fragility in project management. Her research on the importance of managing for project legacy made her a finalist in 2017 for the prestigious IPMA Young Researcher Award. Marisa’s main research interests include PMOs, future-oriented project management, sustainable project management, and organizational agility.

She is certified as a PMP®, PRINCE2®, PRINCE 2 Agile®, MOP®, MSP®, P3O®, APMP® (IPMA-D), PMD® Pro Level 2, PMO-CP, as well as a Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP®) for MS Project, Project Server and Project Online. In addition, Marisa is an active member of the project management community, being a blogger at, a member of the APM®, subject matter expert representative in the Portuguese technical commission liaising with ISO/TC 258, contributor to the PMI’s publication “Organizational Project Management Guide”, and having served as a volunteer with the PMI® Portugal Chapter. She was also Secretary of the APM PMO Specific Interest Group.

Marisa is the co-author of the only PMO training courses accredited by the chartered body for the project profession (APM). A believer in the power of project management skills for social good, Marisa also held volunteer positions as a mentor at Project Managers Against Poverty and Programs Director at Project Managers Without Borders (PMWB). In 2019 she became one of the youngest Fellow members of the APM, in recognition of her contribution to the profession.

Marisa is the author of “Bedtime Stories for Project Managers” and a Senior Consultant at Wellingtone, a UK-based leading project management consulting firm dedicated to enable step change in organizational PPM maturity.

Marisa can be contacted at


Andrey Lyakin (Russia), is the expert on the implementation and development of organization management systems. He is a professional manager who has been managing people, projects and processes for more than 20 years.

Andrey went all the way in IT – from a technical support specialist to the CEO – and is the expert in the field of process-product-project management (Product owner, ITIL / ITSM, PMBoK).

He took part in major projects to organize project activities at the Ministry of Economic Development of the Russian Federation, the Analytical Center of the Government of the Russian Federation, the Government of Moscow, Krasnodar Territory, etc.

Andrey is Assessor of the “Project Olympus” competition (professional project management in the public sector), as well as the developer and presenter of copyright courses in project management, including using flexible approaches.