Meet The Team
Tracy Edwards MBE - Project Manager
Tracy embarked on her first in Whitbread Round the World Race 1985-86 as the first girl to ever race on a Maxi when she joined Atlantic Privateer as cook. She won international fame in 1990 as the skipper of the first all-woman crew to sail around the world when they raced in the 1989/90 WRTWR. Maiden won two legs and came second overall. Tracy was awarded an MBE and became the first woman in its 34 year history to be awarded the Yachtsman of the Year Trophy. She paved the way for other women to follow.
In 1998 she skippered the first all-female crew to attempt the Jules Verne non-stop round the world record. They were on course for the record but they were dismasted off Cape Horn. During their attempt the team broke 7 world records. In 2000/01 Tracy created and managed the world’s first mixed sex professional record-breaking crew with Maiden II. The team broke the 24 record which became the fastest record in the world.
In 2014 Maiden was found rotting in the Seychelles and so Tracy raised the funds to rescue her and bring her home, restoring her to her former glory. The Maiden Factor was set up to raise funds and awareness for the education of 130 million girls worldwide who are currently denied this basic right. In November 2018, this iconic piece of British Maritime History, embarked on a six-year world tour. Maiden is a Global Ambassador for the Empowerment of Girls through Education.
Libby Mudditt - COO
Libby grew up in Northamptonshire and learnt to sail at Cransley Sailing Club but never progressed to ocean sailing although she did manage to take the helm of Maiden when she was in Antigua!
A senior communications and marketing professional with extensive experience of sponsorship, media and event & sports marketing with major international consultancies; the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA); TOP Olympic sponsor, Samsung and the Qatar based Oryx Quest round the world yacht race, working for Tracy Edwards MBE. She then went to Jordan to work as a consultant for HRH Prince Feisal Al Hussein developing and implementing his vision of a global peace & sport initiative.
Loving a challenge, Libby returned to the UK when Tracy had ‘rescued’ Maiden was returning to the UK for restoration and became a key member of the team on many elements of The Maiden Factor, with specific responsibilities for media and communications, programme development and on the charitable arm of the project, The Maiden Factor Foundation.
Marie-Claude (Kieffer) Heys - Team Manager
At age 17, Marie-Claude (Kieffer) Heys dreamt of participating in the Whitbread Round the World Race. It would be a dream that took a long time to achieve as a woman in a man’s world.
In 1983, she entered the single-handed Figaro race. She competed in this race again in 1987, 1990, and 1991, with respectable results. She skippered female crews for the Tour de France a La Voile in 1985 and 1986. At the age of 25, Marie-Claude completed her first successful transatlantic race – Monaco-New York on Lady Elf skippered by Sylvie Viant. The crew of 7 women and 5 men were victorious.
In 1986, MC joined Maiden as 1st Mate and was instrumental in the success of the project. Things did not go according to plan though, and she was unable to compete in the race until 1993-94 when she competed on “Heineken”, a boat sailed by a crew of 12 women. She competed in this race again for the 1997-1998 edition as part of a 12 woman crew on “EF Education”.
After having spent 15 years living out of a suitcase, she started Key Yachting in Hamble, UK, with her then-boyfriend Paul Heys, to whom she was married in 1998 but widowed in 2019. We are so fortunate to have MC back with Maiden where she belongs working with the crew preparing for their next adventure in the upcoming Ocean Global Race (OGR)!
Kaia Bint Savage - Head of Digital Content
Kaia Bint Savage is an experienced videographer, digital content producer and social media communicator, who has been working with The Maiden Factor for over half a decade. She holds a hons Degree in Psychology from Royal Holloway University, and a Masters Degree in Directing and Producing Science and Natural History from The National Film and Television School. She is a qualified Forest School Level 3 Leader, and is passionate about educating children creatively, and holistically.
Kaia was nominated in 2019 for the Mark Hanson Award (the brightest and most promising social media communicator) in the UK Social Media Awards. Her first children’s film, in which she was director and producer, ‘Kaia’s Animal Detective Agency’, was chosen for the Official Selection in the NaturVision Film Festival 2021. Her footage has been featured on major news networks, such as CNN, BBC, Sky and TVNZ, and her photographs have been used in major publications such as CNN, BBC, SailWorld and many more.
During Kaia’s time with The Maiden Factor, she has filmed a majority of their video content all over the globe, including creating a series of videos with schools and projects such as Muktangan in Mumbai, India, and producing a film for young people about Maiden, starring Kate Ashfield as the narrator. She has worked as a photographer within the UK’s Royal Rota, for the LA premiere of “Maiden” and has a lot of experience as a camera operator out on the water in ALL weather conditions!
Greg Bint - Education and Charities Liaison
Greg began his career as a paratrooper, serving with both the Royal Air Force Regiment and the U.S. Air Force. After leaving the military, he transitioned to Arboriculture, working in London and the home counties. In 2005, Greg collaborated with Tracy on the ORYX Quest Multihull Race, a unique round-the-world yacht race that started and finished in the Middle East. His role involved creating an education program for schools in Doha, Qatar, where the race began and ended.
When The Maiden Factor initiative was launched, Tracy invited Greg to lead its educational efforts. Since then, Greg has been actively engaged with schools worldwide, advocating for Maiden’s mission to improve girls’ access to education. In addition to his educational work, Greg is also involved in charity engagement, visiting and working with charities abroad and helping to identify organisations that can benefit from The Maiden Factor Foundation’s support.
Mackenna Edwards-Mair - Shore Manager
Mackenna has been working with Maiden since 2017, initially as Team Photographer during the rescue and restoration of Maiden, before becoming Shore Assistant, working for Alex Roberts, on the first two years of the Maiden World Tour. During that time Maiden sailed from the UK to the Caribbean via Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii, Canada, the West Coast of the USA and the Panama Canal. After the Pandemic, Mack became Events Manager and created, organised and managed school visits, crew events, fundraising events and VIP tours during the East Coast of America tour.
During the Ocean Globe Race Mack will be Shore Manager for the stopovers with an added bonus! Taking a break from touring with Maiden during last year, she passed her Certificate in Culinary Arts. So, as well as organising logistics, accommodation and provisioning, she will also be providing nutritious meals for the race crew and shore team at each stopover. Making sure everyone is healthy and happy and has lots of energy to complete the work needed at the relatively short stops is absolutely crucial. Mack wants to make sure that the crew is raring to go when they get back out to sea and racing again. Keeping everyone healthy is an important part of ocean racing.