Rebecca Obounou

President and Founder, Christian Haitian Entrepreneurial Society, Inc. (CHES)

Rebecca runs and leads CHES, an organization educates, mentors and funds entrepreneurs in rural areas of Haiti. To date, CHES has trained over 200 entrepreneurs of whom over 50% have been women. The organization has financed a women owned start-up that created five livable wage jobs in 2013. This past August, CHES began working 50 entrepreneurs from a community in Southern Haiti who lost their livelihoods from the damage caused by the October 2016 Hurricane Matthew. This community requested CHES’ assistance in launching a 1,500 hen poultry farm. In August, CHES successfully launched the first phase of a three-year engagement with this community which involves the following activities: training, financial assistance, coaching, mentoring monitoring and evaluation.

Inspired by her experiences as a Haitian-American who was born in the US but raised in Haiti as a young woman, she founded CHES in 2008. Her time in Haiti taught her that the most vulnerable Haitians seek dignified jobs before they seek charity. This realization shaped her life’s trajectory. Rebecca decided to go to business school due to the conviction that she developed that business is one of the key elements to poverty eradication. She earned her undergraduate degree in Management from Bentley University and holds a Master in Business Administration from Babson College with a concentration in Entrepreneurship and the Business and Social Innovation Intensity Track. Her career includes corporate retail, real estate sales, product sales, and hospitality. Rebecca currently works at Babson College as Assistant Director of the Schlesinger Fund for Global Healthcare Entrepreneurship. Rebecca is happily married, loves traveling the world, and enjoys well-made movies and TV series.

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