Sanja Simic

Executive Leadership Program - Vancouver Class 01

Sanja Simic
Executive Director
I am based in: Vancouver

I was born and raised in Serbia, and at age 16 a college basketball offer took me to the United States. Because I left home at such a young age, I never got to take advantage of the only child syndrome (*sigh*). Instead, my mantra was "work hard and give it all you've got" because there was no fallback plan. I eventually settled in Vancouver, Canada and this has been my home base for 10 years now.

My career started off in finance and while I remain an active investor, in 2013, a door opened to philanthropy. I am fascinated by this question of how to bring these two worlds closer together. I believe there is a lot of room for cross-pollination.

My passion, as I came to understand it recently, is accelerating innovation in healthcare. The sector, in my opinion, seems to be slow to embrace the Fourth Industrial Revolution. A recent close call with cancer made me fully own and lean into this passion. Luckily, through my work, I get to do just that. I search for and invest in early-stage health tech companies, fund innovative research through grants, and explore new models of human-centered healthcare. I am especially interested in the human and social aspects of healthcare and what it could look like with the aid of technology.

Beyond that, I am curious about systems change and how we might engage in policy discussions differently and use more timely and relevant data to inform policy.

I'm always curious and looking to learn more about anything and everything. It's very nice to meet you and feel free to reach out and connect.