Ali Serag

A Canadian passionate about Technology, Entrepreneurship and the thing they're both meant to serve, Community.
Vancouver, Canada

Studied Computer Science at the University of British Columbia: - After discovering that Kazakhstan had one of the highest rates of suicide in the world and seeing my international student friend going through severe depression, I founded and led a cultural club at UBC called the Kazakh Student Association, where we organized various cultural events and educational activities, fostering a home away from home for Kazakh students as well as a place of learning for people interested in the unique culture of the Kazakh people. By reinforcing identity, creating a familiar community and a place that students, many of which were spending the first time of their life away from family, could feel home. Grew it to several hundred members with bi-weekly events. - I Co-founded and organized Harambecouver, Canada's first ever multicultural parade that was inspired by the historic events at Hogans Alleyway, the parade was part of 3 days of events that focused on First Nations reconciliation and how other communities can learn and apply to it towards getting passed conflicts and building a healthy future trajectory. - Won first place in several international hackathons, including SAP's Hack the Future: - Acted as Student Chaplain at UBC for 3 years, organizing interfaith activities towards diminishing misconceptions between various groups. - Started Calendeen, a calendar for millennial Muslims featuring an interactive Mosque-map of the lower mainland and utilizing the google calendar API to create a calendar for various volunteering/social/spiritual events happening with various organizations. Through the platform, we've organized successful successful events and grew membership to 400+. - CEO and co-founder of Lightbyte, a social good tech platform where I led a team in developing a digitized identity for the homeless in the poorest area of Vancouver. The living conditions for many homeless individuals make it very difficult to maintain a physical ID. Vast amounts of medical resources are needlessly diverted towards rerunning tests on homeless that lack ID and the nature of detox clinics requiring some form of ID makes them inaccessible to those that need the services most. Our goal was to resolve this by digitizing an individuals health card ID and tying it to something non-physical like facial recognition technology: - Acted as CTO for independent Vancouver City Council campaign for Candidate running to be the city's youngest ever Councilor, Khan for Council. Here I helped write tech-focused policy, proposed and designed plans for annual municipal city Hackathons in Vancouver, engaging millennials to politics by giving them a platform to directly connect with the problems the city faces from Fentanyl overdoses to affordability in space-bound cities I also organized StartupCity: Fostering Innovation in Vancouver, a panel discussion partnering with Vancouver Startup Week to bring together the city's most innovative minds and discuss how to develop a stronger Startup culture and various ways the city could improve through tech. I recommend the creation of a Tech & Innovation team under Vancouver's CTO that would focus on forming public-private partnerships with innovative businesses, ideate on ways to minimize the negative social ramifications of technological innovation, promote the usage of city data-sets at hackathons and in educational institutions/entrepreneurial initiatives and secure perks for startups, such as Compass Card subsidies and assistance to make co-working spaces more affordable. - Started Cinyras a thought-tank that is focused on influencing policy and educating the public on ethical, human-centric Artificial Intelligence. - Put a pause on my last year of classes in 2018 to focus full time on my current fin-tech startup, Fostrum, where I'm co-founder of Canada's only Neobank for Businesses: