Organizing Team

Aspire Steering Committee

The Steering Committee handles the long-term strategic planning and decision-making for the Aspire organization according to the mission, vision and values of the organization established in the first years of existence.

Ana-Maria Ciobanu

Ana-Maria graduated magna cum laude from the American University in Paris, specializing in Political Science and International Economics. She also holds a Master’s in Public Administration, from the University of Bucharest, as well as a certificate in International Relations, from the Romanian Diplomatic Institute. Currently, Ana is working for the American Chamber of Commerce in Romania as Advocacy & External Relations Coordinator.

Alex Lazar

Alex graduated from London Business School and is a former Co-President of Aspire (2011-2014), currently seating on the Board of Aspire. He previously worked in London in strategy consulting and currently resides in Bucharest where he is managing new product launches in the water industry.

Dinu Gheorghe

Dinu Gheorghe is leading the online operations for RCS&RDS, the leading telekom operator in Romania, managing both the ecommerce and the media platforms. Previously he worked as a financial consultant for Hidroelectrica and Electrica S.A, the two largest energy production and distribution companies in Romania. Dinu’s passion for entrepreneurship lead him to create 2 succesful startups in the IT and agriculture sectors. Dinu holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Warwick Business School and a Master in Finance from Instituto Empresa.

Dani Oros

Dani is leading the Marketing department at Google and YouTube in Romania. Dani was a participant at Aspire Academy 2011 and has been involved in various roles ever since: Finance Manager, Co-President and Board Member. Prior to joining Google, he was a Country Manager for BlaBlaCar, the world largest’s carpooling platform, in Romania, Hungary and Croatia. Before that, he worked as a management consultant for A.T. Kearney and as Head of Special Projects for Ana Holding / Ana Imep.

Ana Sarbu

Ana Sarbu graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University in 2012, with a double degree in Government and Russian. She is currently working in business development for Palantir Technologies, a software company co-founded by Peter Thiel. Previously she was employed with Richard Attias & Associates, a New York-based international strategic communications consulting company.

Alex Radu

Alex graduated Harvard University in 2008 with a degree in Economics and Government and received an MBA from Harvard Business School in 2012. He is currently working in London and New York. He is passionate about transforming education and enjoys sailing, flying and traveling.

Ana Voicilă

Ana joined Aspire High School in 2014 and ever since she has been part of the Aspire organising team. She graduated with first class honours from an Economics and Business program at UCL and now continues her studies in Finance at Harvard Extension School, while working in investment banking in London. Ana joined Aspire’s Mission Circle for 2 years, lead the Incubator, acted as Aspire Co-President and has been part of the Aspire Strategic Board. She is currently sitting on the Aspire Steering Committee.


Aspire Senior Advisors

The Aspire Senior Advisors are senior-level leaders from the Aspire community that advise the organizing team on decisions and business matters ranging from strategy planning, risk and growth of organization, fundraising and team management.

Andrei Vitiuc

Andrei joined the first Aspire High School program in 2013 and was part of the organising team for several years, rotating in different departments. He graduated from Bucknell University and decided, two years ago, to return to Romania, working both in the private and public sector.

Elena Zaharia

Elena has been part of the Aspire community since 2014. She has held various leadership positions throughout the years, culminating with the first-ever Aspire Executive Director (2019 – 2021). Elena has graduated with a bachelor degree in international relations and european studies from the University of Bucharest, obtained an MBA from the Bucharest University of Economic Studies and is currently pursuing a master degree in Economics and Communication for Management and Innovation at Sapienza University of Rome.

Daniel Iacob

Daniel joined Aspire is 2012 after graduating Aspire Academy. He is a Romanian film producer and media entrepreneur with business activities ranging for development, production and distribution of feature films within the domestic and international market. He is known for the production and distribution of #Sefie 69 and Oh, Ramona.

Using an innovative system for self organization entitled holacracy, our team is organized in Circles:

Finance Team:

  • Nicole Tanase
  • Alexandru Lumina
  • Andrei Galos
  • Alexandru Radulescu
  • Ruxandra Sorocianu

Logistics & Community Team:

  • Diana Dinu
  • Silvia Cărășel
  • Ana Maria Calancea
  • Antonia Chiroiu
  • Filip-Bogdan Serban-Dragan
  • Luca Pantea
  • Bianca Mayer
  • Ariana Țiplea
  • Alexandra Nanu

Marketing Team:

  • Daria Dumbrava
  • Doriana Gheorghe
  • Ioana Turcan
  • Larisa Dascau
  • Mara Monoses
  • Maria Dragoi
  • Sabina Dragan

Recruitment Team:

  • Maria Ivanciu
  • Alex Mocanu
  • Irina Mocanu
  • Tudor Gaitan
  • Matei Scarlatescu
  • Maria Dragoi
  • Valeriya Boyko
  • Teodora Toma
  • Sonia Adorean
  • Dan Dascalu
  • Magdy Mekdad
  • Madalina Draghici
  • Delia Mera

Team Leaders

, the ones that will be leading all Aspire’s projects for the year that comes:

Teodora Toma

Teodora was a participant in the Aspire High School 2021 program. She decided to join the Core Team, becoming the Head of The Marketing Department. Aspire shaped her vision on life and helped her evolve in all aspects of life and now she wants to give back to the community the knowledge that she accumulated. In her free time, she loves being part of volunteering activities or reading about different subjects. Regarding her academic path, she is still considering what field to study in the future, but now she is focusing on deepening her knowledge on different areas.

Ingrid Gant

Ingrid has joined Aspire in 2021 as a participant in the Aspire High School program. Apart from being the co-head of the Logistics & Community department within the core team, Ingrid is a junior at the german high school from Timisoara with a specialization in mathematics and informatics. After finishing highschool she wants to pursue a degree in biomedicine. In her free time, you will find her volunteering in various activities and participating in different programs ( mostly related to biomedicine and education ). She decided to join the core team, in order to give back to the community that had such an impact on her as a person, student and future leader. She took on the challenge of organizing the amazing Aspire events this year, because of her wish to keep the Aspire community united and in a constant growth process.

Octavian Maradin

Octavian joined the Aspire community in 2015 after taking part in Aspire High School. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in International Econometrics from Erasmus University Rotterdam and is currently pursuing a master’s in the same field. Furthermore, Octavian also currently works in the field of analytics at Bitdefender in their Bucharest office. He is excited to give back to the community and to lead one of the Recruitment teams.

Octavia Veresteanu

Translator-freelancer, Culture Champion in the Google Romania team, mother of 9-year old Matei, passionate about writing, education and equity. Organizing events and making people happy are her favorite keywords.

Octavia participated in Professionals 2021 Program, after which she got involved as a volunteer. She is now Co-lead for the Community & Logistics team

Alexa Zamfir

Alexa started her Aspire journey with Aspire High School in 2016. She graduated from King’s College London with a BSc in Global Health & Neuroscience and is currently pursuing her Master’s in Medical Management in Sweden at Karolinska Institutet. With a lifetime interest in healthcare, she has worked pro-bono in consulting with various social enterprises, leads multiple NGOs and works to promote international research opportunities for the youth. In 2021 she kickstarts her involvement with the Aspire community as one of the leads for the Recruitment team.

Alex Mocanu

Alex has been a member of the organizing team since he joined Aspire High School in 2018. He believes Aspire has played a major role in his personal development, which is why he has stayed close to the community over the years. After graduating high school, he went on to study Politics, Philosophy and Economics at UCL. Alex was part of the Aspire High School team for this year’s summer programs and will be in charge of leading the Recruitment team alongside Maria.