The IWF community mourns the passing of IWF South Africa member Veronica Devine, a champion for equality, entrepreneur, mentor and inspiration to many. Veronica was passionate about women’s issues and leadership development. As a young female professional who faced sexism, she became her own boss and thrived as an entrepreneur. She founded Justine Cosmetics in 1973, which became a household name. Through its direct selling concept, Justine Cosmetics developed, educated and assisted women to become financially independent. Justine was eventually acquired by Avon Cosmetics Inc.
Dynamic as she was, she went on to found The Resilience Company and become CEO of Virgin Cosmetics.
She also recently co-founded SkinEscens.
When IWF South Africa was founded, Veronica was determined to work with her forum sisters to make it a success, remaining true to the forum’s mission throughout her life. She was an inspiring and unifying force, and her impact on the forum will be felt for years to come.
Her passion was helping emerging women leaders. At the global level, Veronica contributed in many ways, including as a member of the Steering Committee for the 2003 IWF Cornerstone Conference in Johannesburg, mentor and supporter of the IWF Fellows Program, featured speaker at multiple IWF leadership programs, and co-chair for the 2015 IWF Cornerstone Conference in Johannesburg.
She was consistently recognized for her work in community development, and was regarded as a pioneer in transformation and change management. She was a generous contributor of ideas, advice and resources to advance the IWF mission. We are deeply appreciative of everything she did for IWF South Africa, IWF Global, our staff and the next generation of women leaders.