Ayanna Samuels

Affiliation: ICT4D Ja Network Facilitator
Country: Jamaica
Email: ayanna.samuels [at] gmail.com
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Ayanna T. Samuels is a Management Associate at Citi Jamaica and the ICT4D Ja Network Facilitator at ICT4D Jamaica Limited.[1] She is also an Independent ICT Development Consultant & Entrepreneur.[2] She is a past member of the American Institute of Aerospace Engineers,[3] and a member of the Caribbean ICT Virtual Community (CIVIC).

Ayanna was born and raised in Kingston, Jamaica. Following her graduation from MIT, she returned to Jamaica and has since done a lot of work in the ICT for Development sector in Jamaica, the Caribbean and internationally. She was a Project Administrator/Technical Consultant at the International Telecommunication Union, which is the UN agency responsible for Communication Technologies, for 8 months in 2010. At Cizmic Consulting Incorporated, she was a Technical Consultant and Project Manager on a 3 year retainer, from March 2007 until March 2010. In this position, her duties included project management as required for certain projects. She has also worked as a Research Analyst on a short term project for the OTF group and as a guest teacher for a month at the Ardenne High School.[4]

Samuels was an ICANN Fellow at ICANN 42 in Dakar, Senegal. She believes that ICT holds great value to bring the needed development to rural areas in the Caribbean, with widespread broadband access being an absolute necessity. She intends to be a part of the change she wants to see and hopes to help give the Caribbean a stronger voice in Internet policy development.[5]


She holds a Dual Master of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering and Technology & Policy from MIT. She graduated with a BSc in Aerospace Engineering with Information Technology from the same university. She was inducted into Sigma Xi Research Society.[6] Before she completed her MSc, she worked as an intern at the International Telecommunications Union in their Strategy and Policy Unit.[7]

Fun Fact

Ayanna is a dancer and avid fitness enthusiast. As of June 2005, she was the first black woman since 1972 to have graduated from MIT with a Master's in Aerospace Engineering. She enjoys interacting with new cultures and traveling the globe.[8]

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