Sumaya Kazi (Bengali: সুমাইয়া কাজী or সুমাইয়া আন্দালিব কাজী), a relatively new name of Bangladeshi origin in the world arena influenced globally. Sumaya has been recognized by BusinessWeek as one of America’s “Best Young Entrepreneurs”, CNN as a “Young Person Who Rocks”, Silicon Valley Business Journal as a “Woman of Influence”, and by UTNE Reader Magazine as one of “50 Visionaries Changing Your World”.
She is the founder of Sumazi, which was selected from more than 1,200 start-ups around the world to compete as a finalist at the prestigious TechCrunch Disrupt Start-up Battlefield, where it won the Omidyar Network award for “Startup Most Likely to Change the World”. In 2005, she was one of the first social media managers to lead social strategy at a Fortune 500 company.
Sumaya Kazi was born on 17th July 1982 in Hollywood, California in 1982 and grew up in Moreno Valley, California in United States of America. She is the daughter of Dr. Nizam Uddin Kazi (Bengali: ডক্টর নিজাম উদ্দিন কাজী) and Merina Kazi Totinee (Bengali: মেরিনা কাজী তটিনি) who belongs to Feni, district of Bangladesh. She is the oldest among her 2 brothers and 2 sisters.
Sumaya Kazi attended college courses at Riverside Community College, advancing in mathematics while attending Landmark Middle School. Kazi attended Canyon Springs High School too. She attended the University of California, Berkeley graduating in 2004 with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies in Business.
After completing her graduation, she started working at Sun Microsystems as a Senior Social Media Manager for the Global Communications division. At the time of working at Sun Microsystems, at the age of just 23, she founded her first company The CulturalConnect, a media publishing company with a series of online magazines spotlighting young minority professionals and connecting them with each other and the non profit world. She started with the magazine, DesiConnect, reaching out to young movers and shakers of South Asian descent. She added few more, The AsiaConnect, The MidEastConnect, The LatinConnect, and The Africana Connect gradually to reach globally. With her continuing effort, she founded Sumazi, the social intelligence platform used by brands, celebrities and enterprises in April 2011.
Recognition: Sumaya Kazi has several recognition starting from very early of her life. Here is a list-
- Voted as “Most Likely to Succeed” by her senior class in Canyon Springs High School
- 1998: Won the title of Miss Inland Empire (California) and become top five finalist in the California Distinguished Young Women competition, resulting scholarship toward college
- Kazi, along with her team, won first place in the Haas School of Business Cisco & Deloitte E-Business case competition
- 2006: BusinessWeek Magazine, America’s Best Young Entrepreneurs Under 25
- 2007: CNN, Young People Who Rock
- 2007: Brass Magazine cover story
- 2007: Silicon Valley Business Journal, Dynamic Super Connector
- 2008: ABC7 KGO-TV, Bay Area Trailblazer and Community Leader
- 2009: UTNE Reader, Top 50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World
- 2011: GenJuice, The Top 100 Most Desirable Mentors
- 2012: YFS Magazine, 10 San Francisco Entrepreneurs to Watch
- 2012: Forbes, Female Founders to Watch from UC Berkeley
- 2012: Reuters, Most Influential Executives on the Web
- 2014: British Bangladeshi Power & Inspiration 100
- 2014: Top 10 Inspirational Bangladeshis Around the World
The cultural Connect:
Sumaya Kazi on Youtube:
3. Daily Mirror
4. Dhaka Tribune
Facebook page–From the Heart of Bangladesh