Mai Duong’s bio

Mai Duong is an accomplished advertising strategist and co-founder of Swab The World. With over 20 years of experience in communications and media strategy with top advertising agencies in Canada, Mai has led groups of talented strategists on clients such as Red Bull, General Motors, Coke, and many others.

In 2014, Mai was diagnosed with leukemia for a second time, and a stem cell transplant was her only cure. She’d never heard of the procedure, but she quickly learned that her odds of finding a compatible match in time were incredibly low. Why? Because she’s Vietnamese. Thanks to her connections in advertising, Mai’s story was shared widely on social media, billboard ads and radio spots. The “Save Mai Duong” campaign was so successful that 20,000 new stem cell donors signed up with her local registry that year, compared to 3,000 in a typical year. After receiving a stem cell transplant, Mai decided to combine her personal and professional experience to help other patients and get more people registered as donors. In 2018, Swab The World – a Canadian start-up charity working hard to fight racial inequality in the niche field of blood cancer and stem cell donation – was born. 

Swab The World’s mission is to increase awareness of stem cell donation, diversify the international database of registered donors, and help patients find stem cell donors. In just a few years, Swab The World has established a network of over 150 student volunteers across 9 universities in Canada.