Jill Lieuw Sjong, Pionero Innovation Ç Curacao Creator Card

The Pioneros are coming! Let it begin with introducing Jill Lieuw Sjong.

To introduce our Pioneros to you, I decided to ask them 5 questions to start a conversation and get to know them better. The Pioneros are talented yu’i Korsou all around the world. The bond that we all have in common will become obvious once you read their answers to our questions; 1. They all love Curaçao, and 2. They all want to do something positive for their island.

This time I meet with a lady that is born in Suriname with Chinese roots and raised on Curaçao. She’s one of the many examples of our multicultural diverse community. I asked Jill Lieuw Sjong five questions, but I got much more in return. Read along and find out what Jill thinks is important for us to innovate.

Jill Lieuw Sjong, Intercultural Communication Professional & Senior Communications Advisor
Jill with her husband and daughter in the Netherlands.
Jill, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?  The five questions I asked Jill:
  • Who are you?
  • What do you do?
  • What do you love?
  • What is innovation to you?
  • Why Innovation Ç?
  • What’s your favorite quote?

If you want to ask Jill a question, make sure to leave a comment below. Or connect with her on LinkedIn.

Who is Jill?

Jill was 18 when she went to study in the Netherlands and now she is a 35, an Intercultural communication professional and a married mother of an almost 2-year-old daughter. As she’s preparing for that 2nd anniversary during a pandemic, she doesn’t shy away from the emotional process, which is a nice affirmation that we are all going through something unique. Each in our own way.

Her stories of Sevilla, Spain, where she spent  6 months studying Spanish and communication sound like it was just a few years ago, but she has come a long way. Her job title Senior Communications Advisor at Meerlanden N.V. shows the experience she has built up over the years and if that’s not enough her history in higher education is just as diverse as her and shows her extensive experience. Jill studied at the Radboud University in Nijmegen, Recruited for the Universiteit van Leiden and lectured at The Haagse Hogeschool.

Jill is an absolutely consciously socially involved, with her heart on her sleeve, professional who forgets that “no” is an acceptable answer, because she wants to be in that political environment and be a sustainability ambassador.

She chooses to actively participate and be present, but not as the center of attention. She prefers the limelight, guiding people in the background, behind the scenes, be better communicators and bring sustainability to your front door.


So what is innovation to you?

“The courage to do things differently. It doesn’t have to be new, as long as it’s an improvement of the old and not limiting our growth.”

Language modernization is one of her points of attention, specifically the older Dutch (colonial) habits of communication, has her passionate attention.

“Innovation doesn’t have to be rocket science, it can be the little everyday things. Keep it simple and don’t stay stuck in the past. Try to improve in what you do and how you do it.”

Her pet peeve is too long news items. “We need to innovate our way of communication on Curaçao.” Jill is very aware of the attention span of people and believes that communication should be to the point.


Why Innovation Ç?

“This might sound a little cliché but… Love for the island!”

It is indeed the most common answer but also the most important one right?

She is intrigued by the innovation Ç platform and the Pioneros Talent Pool, and she loves our young way of communicating. 

She wants to feel involved in the future of the island and share her skills and knowledge that she accumulated over the years. Maybe the beginning of a new adventure for when she returns to the island? That’s why she is also part of the Curaçao Donut Economy. You won’t be too shocked to know that she also plays a communication advisory role there.

There is also the mother and the importance of the upbringing of her child. On Curaçao she can be more a child, and longer is Jill’s belief, and she shares her experience with seeing her daughter in a 6-story concrete building in the Netherlands and playing on the front porch of her families home. The Caribbean experience, family and outdoors.

The experience of first world problems in the Netherlands versus the perspective of real life on Curaçao. Simplistically, it’s a more balanced lifestyle in her opinion. As a mother of a 2-year-old with her own little attitude, Jill is weighing her options. And doing nothing is not one of them.


What is your favorite quote?

When I ask her what her favorite quote is, she answers “I’m not so much of the quotes, but my father has some interesting one liners that I have memorized.”

Her father clearly played an important role in Jill’s life, and I feel his wisdom should be shared as well. His favorite quotes that Jill knows from the top of her head: “SSDD”  Meaning: “Same Shit, Different Day.” Or… “It is what it is, deal with it.”

But the closest to home and the most fitting to where we are now in our lifetime is her own quote that comes from her own experience this past year:

“Crisis brings opportunity.”

I am sure, I am not the only one who can relate, but Jill is absolutely a Pionero  that know that now is the time to embrace opportunity. Are you ready to be a Pionero as well?



Join our Pioneros Talent Pool and contribute with your knowledge.

Coming Saturday, 19th of December we will be hosting our first Pioneros Community Session where we will be officially launching our talent and innovation community.

This session will be held with the theme: Pioneering the New Curaçao. During this interactive dialogue, we will share perspectives, learnings, and inspiration on how to pioneer the new Curaçao and what we can do to get there.

If you have not registered yet to be a part of our Pionero community get connected here: https://innovationcur.com/pionero/

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