Irene Sterian - 2017 SPIE Women in Optics Planner
Director Technology and Innovation Development
ReMAP Network, Canada
Country of Birth: Romania
I’ve always loved mathematics. I thrive on the consistency of fractals and the ubiquitous nature of science, the universal language of innovation. Math is my first language; English is my fifth. My dad was an electrical engineer and my mother a chemist; they inspired me to explore a career in the STEM world. I am an industrial engineer and while I pursued a career in advanced manufacturing, I realized that science and technology is dynamic, adapting to the global market. Now I am the architect of ReMAP, a Canadian ecosystem of large multinational organizations, startups, small and medium enterprises, and research institutions.
Earning respect is challenging. In an industry mostly dominated by men, women can be characterized as emotional, indecisive, or risk adverse. I try to disprove these preconceived perceptions by inspiring others to challenge the status quo. I enthusiastically collaborate with business leaders, industry associations, and research institutions from around the world to develop technology roadmaps, tangible product solutions, and commercially relevant innovations that solve business challenges.
As a lifelong learner, I’m never bored in this profession and I’m energized to make a significant impact in everything I do. If you are interested in STEM, have passion and dream big. Take calculated risks, meet challenges with creativity, and turn failures into assets. Failure is the colleague of success; it takes both to balance the equation. I have discovered that there is no better formula for innovation and successful technologies than balancing a combination of courage, resilience, and passion.