Maia Banciu - A Short Biography
Maia's career has encompassed non-profit, corporate and free-lance work with prestigious Romanian-based international organizations: Connex/Vodafone, PHARE-VET, The Soros Foundation for an Open Society, Habitat for Humanity, where she gained hands-on experience in PR, CSR, brand communications, marketing, program management, leadership. She further enhanced her knowledge and skills as a Fulbright - H.H. Humphrey Fellow at the University of Maryland - College Park, where she studied Leadership and Communications with some of the leading specialists in the field, while doing a professional affiliation with two of the then reference organizations in Washington D.C.: The Kamber Group-Communications Agency and the International Executive Service Corps business consultancy.
Upon her return to Romania, she decided to start her own boutique consultancy. As a managing partner at Inter Verba she helped build a successful local and national brand: Match Point-advertising matches. Her other clients for brand communications, positioning and PR strategies included: Transylvania International Film Festival-TIFF, "Iuliu Haţieganu Medical University" Cluj, Kludi Romania, Rondocarton, Medicare International, IDEA Print&Design, Surgical Clinic I Cluj, Gamma Records, Hirsch-Servo Romania, Vino Vero, Vinexpert - up until 2012, her family was a shareholder in both wine operations. Since 2014 she has been Marketing Manager of Wine Point, where her family is also a shareholder. Her efforts to promote wine culture and wine education in Romania include the translation of Hugh Johnson's The Story of Wine (published in 2009) and Jancis Robinson's How to Taste Wine (printed in 2011), as well as conducting wine tastings and wine courses. In 2015, she gained the WSET Level 2 Award in Wines & Spirits.
In 2003, she dedicated her efforts to the creation of a new party (URR - The Union for the Reconstruction of Romania) with a clear anti-corruption agenda.
Maia is a passionate advocate of Corporate Social Responsibility and civic implication. She was invited to speak on these topics on a number of occasions and events hosted by AIESEC - "Payroll Giving", OSUB - "Cultural Marketing", the Lions Clubs - "LIONS for Cluj-CSR, Pragmatism or Idealism?", Banii Noştri Conferences - "A Brand for Cluj-The Role of Local Administration", Local Civic Council Cluj - "Communications Strategy"; "A Cultural Strategy for Cluj", The 1st International CSR Conference Bucharest - "Corporate Mentoring-A Call-to-Action: Corporates Reaching Out to SME's"; Blaj City Hall - "Why Brand Blaj?"; Cluj City Hall and Local Civic Council - "City Branding and Structural Funds", in collaboration with Aida Catană, director, Project Europa Regional. She is an active voluntary member of the Local Civic Council.
On May 3rd 2007, she was invited by the European Commission to represent Romania at the first Responsible Entrepreneurship Exchange organized by the Enterprise and Industry Directorate.
In 2011, she initiated the creation of Conexio, a not-for-profit organization which supports the activity of the National Theatre in Cluj. She currently serves as the President of Conexio.
Maia's particular passion is in providing counselling, coaching and training support in Integrated Marketing Communications, Intercultural Communication, CSR, Leadership and lately, wine. She believes in using an integrated and holistic approach to people, business and community development, as she is convinced that soft skills are vital to reputation and brand building.
She believes that business, civic engagement and culture/the arts are vital to healthy communities, nations and the world. She loves theater because it is a participatory art which provides a creative space that allows us to address difficult issues and to envision our future.