“Work so hard that you don’t have to introduce yourself.” If you travel around startup offices, you’ve likely seen phrases on inspirational posters or t-shirts. There isn’t a better personification of True North headliner Siyabulela Xuza.
Born and raised in South Africa, Xuza was first inspired by the roar of a Cessna engine over his home in the township of Mthatha. It was 1994 and the plane was dropping pamphlets to the township with updates from the government as Nelson Mandela began his presidency of post-apartheid South Africa. Said Xuza, “…the sight of that technological marvel ignited in me a curiosity for science and a passion for using technology to engineer an African renaissance.”
Xuza rose to international attention with his award-winning rocket fuel science project – earning awards at the South African National Science Expo, the International Youth Science Fair in Sweden and the Intel International Science & Engineering Fair in the States.
Today, Xuza is focused on building solutions to address the energy needs of the planet – in both developed and developing nations. His work has won him accolades across the globe – and even beyond our atmosphere – he has a minor planet near Jupiter named in recognition of his achievements.