Who we are

The Young Global Leaders ® Community is an accelerator for a dynamic community of exceptional people with the vision, courage, and influence to drive positive change in the world.

Our growing membership of more than 1,400 members and alumni of 120 nationalities includes civic and business innovators, entrepreneurs, technology pioneers, educators, activists, artists, journalists, and more.

Aligned with the World Economic Forum’s mission, we seek to drive public-private co-operation in the global public interest. We are united by the belief that today’s pressing problems present an opportunity to build a better future across sectors and boundaries.

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Meet our members

Bogolo Joy Kenewendo

Member of Parliament, The National Assembly of the Republic of Botswana, Botswana

Bogolo J. Kenewendo is a Global economist, Advisor and Former Cabinet Minister of Investment, Trade & Industry & Specially Elected Member of Parliament in Botswana (2016-2019). She has deep expertise in international trade and development. She has a particular focus on Pan-African development and a passion for accelerating digitisation and innovation across the continent.

As the Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry in Botswana, she implemented reforms to significantly improve the ease of doing business, open up both domestic and international markets, and position the country to succeed in the global value chains as well as the digital economy. During her tenure, she was the youngest Cabinet Minister in Africa and in Botswana’s history.

Kenewendo is also a vocal advocate for gender equity and protection of children’s rights. She has received global recognition for her work, being appointed as a member of the G7 Gender Equality Advisory Council, Senior Africa Advisor to Jack Ma Foundation and Africa Business Heroes, Jury for the FAO Africa Innovation Prize, a member of United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres’ High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation and group on Financing for Development, a member of the World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Future Council on Global Public Goods in the Fourth Industrial Revolution, WEF Trade Action Group and a WEF Young Global Leader.

She currently serves as Managing Director of Kenewendo Advisory, a Non-resident Fellow at Center for Global Development and sits on multiple corporate boards.

Melanie Perkins

Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder, Canva Pty Ltd, Australia

Melanie Perkins is chief executive officer and co-founder of Canva, an online design and publishing tool that makes graphic design simple for everyone. Since launching in 2013, Canva has grown to over 15 million users across 190 countries, with more than 1 billion designs created, at 33 designs per second. Today Canva is growing from strength the strength, with over 500 team members working together on a mission to empower everyone to create beautiful designs.

Wang Wen

Food Scientist, Nestlé R&D Centre Singapore, Singapore

Bioengineer, entrepreneur and designer. Research focuses on biointerface, involving interdisciplinary studies that combine the knowledge of biotechnology, advanced materials, and design. Vision is to fill the gap between research and real-world applications by enabling easy to access technology and more affordable products. Has been working on numerous research and commercial projects, for instance, producing therapeutic proteins and small molecule drugs with novel processes, making sustainable biofuel from waste, removing sulphur from diesel, and fabricating innovative healthcare/household products using biological living materials. Recent research focuses on innovative materials to enhance well-being, such as functional and shape-shifting food. Work has been recognized by the media (Washington Post, CNN, Discovery), academia (Science Advances, JACS, ACM-CHI), and the public (through exhibitions at Centre Pompidou, Ars Electronica).

Emily Serazin

Managing Director and Partner, Boston Consulting Group (BCG), USA

Emily Serazin is a Managing Director and Partner at the Boston Consulting Group (BCG). Emily is a core member of BCG’s Health Care and Social Impact practices. Within health care, Emily’s focus is on vaccines and global health across the value chain. She also has expertise in digital health and in the formation and optimization of public-private partnerships. Examples of Emily's experience in the commercial health care sector include developing growth and product launch strategies for players in the global vaccines market, leading due diligences, and supporting post-merger integrations. In the realm of global public health, Emily has worked across leading global health institutions such as Gavi, UNICEF, WHO, and the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation to define investment strategies, coordinate multi-stakeholder efforts, prioritize portfolios, and identify key levers to drive uptake in low- and middle-income countries. Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, Emily has worked extensively with public, private and social sector actors to accelerate the development and deployment of Covid-19 vaccines and therapeutics.

Adriana Ortiz

President, National Handcraft Institute (IPA), Paraguay

Adriana Ortiz is a Paraguayan designer and entrepreneur who studied fashion design in Mexico and Spain. She has a degree in Psychology. She started working as an entrepreneur building her own commercial brand of feminine accessories and jewellery integrating craft design with contemporary design. In 2018, she was appointed President of the National Handcraft Institute (IPA). Her work focuses on promoting Paraguayan crafts through contemporary design practices that enable the strengthening of the value chains of artisanal production. This creates opportunities for fairer trade and better incomes for 20,000 artisans, of whom 70% are women. She is also leading the creation of "Safeguard Schools" for the protection of ancestral knowledge, mainly in rural communities. During her mandate, the first Paraguayan Artisan Fund was created to give financial support to civil society organizations working with indigenous communities to promote and develop indigenous crafts. The public policies promoted by IPA allowed for the creation of more than 70 new commercial units to sell Paraguayan crafts in national and international markets with a positive economic impact for many families in the country. Ortiz aims to contribute to a better future for the country and the world.

Lokesh Nara

Member, Andhra Pradesh Legislative Council, India

Former Minister of Information Technology, Electronics and Communications, Panchayat Raj, and Rural Development of Andhra Pradesh, India. One of the youngest ministers in the country. Is passionate about cultivating a robust business-friendly environment and accelerating technology penetration and rural development.

Paul Rivera

Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Kalibrr Technology Ventures, Philippines

Paul Rivera is the co-founder and CEO of Kalibrr, a careers platform for over 5 million young professionals. Kalibrr has enabled over 300,000 people to get hired via their platform since its founding. Prior to Kalibrr, Paul was the co-founder and President at Open Access BPO, an innovative outsourcing company that brought several technology companies to the Philippines. Paul is also an active investor in technology startups in the Philippines including Remedy, Maria Health and MyKuya. Paul is a graduate of UC Berkeley and began his early career in Silicon Valley at Google before returning to the Philippines to be an entrepreneur.

Deshal De Mel

Economic Adviser to the Minister of Finance, Ministry of Finance Sri Lanka, Sri Lanka

Deshal de Mel is economic adviser to the minister of finance of Sri Lanka and the youngest director to have served at Sampath Bank. An economist by training, de Mel is passionate about and committed to economic reform in Sri Lanka in order to create competitive and fair markets along with broader economic and political reform to further economic and political freedoms.

Kate Brandt

Sustainability Officer, Google, USA

Kate Brandt credits her time in government for shaping her perspective that partnerships between the public and private sector are key to solving broad, systemic challenges like clean energy and climate change. Kate currently serves as Google's Chief Sustainability Officer, leading sustainability across Google's worldwide operations, products and supply chain. Previously, she served in the White House as the country's first Federal Chief Sustainability Officer where she helped create an executive order that will cut greenhouse-gas emissions by over 40% in the next decade.