Who we are

The Forum of Young Global Leaders is a community with the vision, courage and influence to drive positive change.

During a transformational five-year experience, YGLs are inspired to be bold in undertaking a sense of shared responsibility, impact and ambition.

Learn more

Meet our members

Michael Faye

Chief Executive Officer, GiveDirectly, USA

Michael Faye is the co-founder and CEO of Taptap Send, which is working to ensure everyone has access to fairly priced remittances consistent with the SDGs. He's also the President and co-founder of GiveDirectly, which has recognized by FastCompany as one of the top 10 most innovative companies in finance, and on the Board of Crown Agents Bank HoldCo. Previous to this, Michael was an Associate Partner at McKinsey where he focused on tech, risk and regulation in the financial services industry,

Michael’s work has been published in the American Economic Review, Brookings Papers on Economic Activity, Foreign Affairs and others. He is a term member of the Council of Foreign Relations, a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader and was named one of Foreign Policy’s 100 leading Global Thinkers. Michael holds a PhD in Economics from Harvard, where he also studied Math and Classics.

Lamya AlHaj

Associate Professor, Sultan Qaboos University, Oman

Lamya Al Haj holds a PhD in Structural and Molecular Biology from UCL and an MSc in Environmental Science and Technology from UNSW. She is a researcher on biodiesel alternatives to oil, and an Associate Professor at the Sultan Qaboos University. Lamya founded a speakers' platform in GCC region “Jalasat Mulhimoon” to showcase role models and inspire younger generations. She has spoken at conferences and corporate events including Harvard and IMD Middle East Alumni conferences on leadership. She was recently selected as a judge for an MIT based competition “Innovators under 35” organized by MIT Technology Review. She is the founder of “Coach4Change” where she worked alongside and supported senior government officials, CEOs, business leaders and boards around the country. She received numerous awards & recognitions including the “Boban Marcovic Prize in Environmental Science”, The “Gulf Intelligence - Occidental Award”, “National Research Award”, “Omani Woman Award 2019” for her innovation, and the prestigious “L’Oréal UNESCO award for women in science- Middle east fellowship award”- 2018. She is also a Fellow at The World Academy of Science (TWAS 2019-2023 affiliate).

Yuan Jiakai

Vice-President and Chief Representative, China, United Way Worldwide, People's Republic of China

Vice-President and China Chief Representative of United Way Worldwide, the world’s largest privately funded non-profit organization with a focus on improving early child education, financial stability and health in 40 countries and territories. Over a decade ago, gave up career as an investment banker in the US to devote professional life to civil society work. Served leadership positions at both leading domestic and international non-profit organizations, including China Red Cross Jet Li One Foundation, Beijing Youcheng Entrepreneur Poverty Alleviation Foundation, Arlington based Rare Conservation and World Wildlife Fund for Nature China Representative Office. Formerly: worked for Credit Suisse’s Leveraged Finance team within the Investment Banking Division in New York; also founded own business as an entrepreneur in Toronto. BBA, University of Toronto, Scarborough; MBA, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Currently completing part-time doctoral studies at the National School of Development, Peking University. World Economic Forum Global Young Leader (2019).

Shalini Puchalapalli

Director, Amazon, India

Shalini is a Director at Amazon in Bangalore. Previously, she was the CEO for Leher Foods Business for Pepsico. She has been awarded the 40 under 40 influential Leaders award by Economic Times and Spencer Stuart in 2014 and has been honored as YGL 2015 by World Economic Forum Shalini is recognized as a leader with strong functional expertise in Sales, Finance, Supply chain and Human resources and deep experience of leading teams in different parts of the world across Eastern and Western Europe, Asia and South America. Shalini joined Pepsi in 2008 as the head of Supply chain for India Beverages and built the supply chain organization. For her work in innovation, she was awarded ‘Innovator of the year’ in 2012 by KPMG and SCLC. In 2012, she moved as the unit manager for Karnataka and Kerala unit. KK unit was awarded the unit of the year under her leadership and she was recognized by Indra Nooyi with Presidents Ring of Honor in 2013 for exceptional leadership. Pri or to her role in Pepsi, she worked with InBev and Godrej. Shalini did her bachelors in engineering from IIT, Madras, Personnel management from XLRI and MBA from INSEAD. She is married and has one ten year old son. Shalini is a keen champion of women’s rights. She has been working in the area of women’s empowerment and prevention of female feticide for last 20 years.

Asif Zahir

Deputy Managing Director, Ananta Apparels Ltd, Bangladesh

Deputy Managing Director, Ananta Group, one of the leading apparel exporters in Bangladesh.

Co-Founder and Managing Director, Sindabad.com, the first and one of the largest B2B focused e-commerce companies in the country.

Formerly: spent several years in the USA working as a Product Manager at Google, focussing on developing applications for the Android mobile operating platform.

Bsc in Computer Science, Stanford University, USA
MBA, Harvard University, USA

Pablo Alberto Barrera Lopez

Executive Vice-President, Strategy and Communications, Yara International, Norway

A passionate multicultural young business leader, Pablo Barrera is determined to transform how large companies act as corporate citizens. Barrera promotes sustainability as an untapped potential rather than a threat and establishes collaborative efforts with other companies to solve some of the key challenges the world faces. Barrera explores new ways to feed a growing population and he works for one of the world's largest crop nutrition companies. Through many years of volunteer work, Barrera has focused on establishing arenas where teenagers and young adults can nurture their talents and develop into responsible forces for good in their societies, regardless of their background.

Leana Wen

Visiting Professor of Health Policy and Management, George Washington University, USA

Dr. Leana Wen is an emergency physician and Visiting Professor of Health Policy and Management at the George Washington University School of Public Health. She is also a contributing columnist for The Washington Post, writing on health policy and public health. As an expert in pandemic preparedness and response, she has been a frequent guest commentator on the covid-19 crisis for CNN, MSNBC, BBC, and National Public Radio.

Previously, Dr. Wen was the Health Commissioner for the City of Baltimore, where she led the nation’s oldest continuously operating health department in the U.S. to fight the opioid epidemic, treat violence and racism as public health issues, and improve maternal and child health. She has also served as President/CEO of the Planned Parenthood, where she worked to reposition the organization as a mainstream healthcare entity that delivers comprehensive care for women and families; as Director of Patient-Centered Care Research in the Department of Emergency Medicine at George Washington University; and a consultant with the World Health Organization, Brookings Institution, and China Medical Board.

Dr. Wen earned her medical degree from Washington University School of Medicine and her master’s degrees at the University of Oxford, where she was a Rhodes Scholar. She completed her residency training at Brigham & Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital. The author of the dozens of scientific articles and the critically-acclaimed book, When Doctors Don’t Listen, she has given six TEDx and TEDMED talks.

She has received recognition as Modern Healthcare’s 50 Most Influential Physician Executives and Leaders and Top 25 Minority Executives in Healthcare; American Public Health Association’s highest award for local public health work; Governing’s Public Officials of the Year; and World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leaders. In 2019, Dr. Wen was named one of TIME magazine’s 100 Most Influential People.

Maggie MacDonnell

Teacher; Co-Founder, Kativik School Board, Canada

Maggie MacDonnell is the winner of the Global Teacher Prize, a $1,000,000 prize that is touted as the Nobel Peace Prize for education. Maggie's educational approach is rooted in community development and feminist practice. For the last 15 years she has worked with such diverse populations as Congolese and Burundian refugees, Tanzanian youth living with HIV, to Inuit teenagers in the Canadian Arctic. Most recently she taught in an isolated Inuit village called Salluit, nestled in the mountains of the Canadian Arctic and only accessible by plane. Here she worked with the community to establish several initiatives, including a running club that saw her student runners turn into philanthropists raising over $100,000, while running in marathons in places such as Hawaii and Barbados, and bringing a peer-led suicide prevention message across the Nunavik region. Maggie is very passionate about working with Indigenous groups and others who are demonstrating resilience in overcoming the legacies of colonization.

Maggie has studied at St. Francis Xavier University, the Coady International Development Institute, University of Toronto and McGill while she was a Jeanne Sauve Fellow. She has worked abroad with Right to Play, the Canadian International Development Agency, CARE International, and Youth Challenge International. She has been named one of the BBC Top 100 Women, as well as a Visionary with the Albert Einstein Institute. She is using her prize money to fund a QAJAQ/KAYAK program to raise awareness about climate change and reignite cultural pride within Inuit youth. She loves movement - supporting young people to chase their dreams - being outside in mother nature - and slowly moving from an intermediate to a fluent Swahili speaker.

Brad Henderson

Chief Executive Officer, P33, USA

As founding CEO of P33, Brad is leading the nonprofit organization to drive global technology leadership for Chicago and inclusive economic growth for all. He brings twenty-plus years of professional experience and brings a deep understanding of how to unlock economic opportunities that benefit businesses and individuals to P33’s efforts.

Brad joined from Boston Consulting Group (BCG), where he was senior partner and managing director in the Chicago office. Originally from a small town in southern Ohio, he received a scholarship to attend the University of Chicago, which he credits to changing his life. Brad joined BCG as a summer associate in 2000, and quickly rose through the ranks to spend 2006 in the Mumbai, India office as part of the BCG Ambassador Program and later lead BCG’s North American Operations Practice.

Brad is an active leader in the Chicago community, serving on the board of trustees for the Chicago History Museum, the Association House in Humboldt Park and Interfaith Youth Core. He also serves on the board of ACCION US Network, which provides capital and business support to business owners of color and female business owners, and Impact Engine, a socially-responsible investment firm. He was a BCG Bruce Henderson Institute (BHI) Fellow focused on impact and socially-responsible investing and is a member of the World Economic Forum Young Global Leaders program.

A Rhodes Scholar, Brad has earned multiple degrees with distinction, including a Bachelor of Arts in Economics with Honors (1997-2001) and Master of Arts in Social Science from the University of Chicago (2000-2001), a Master of Science in Economic and Social History from University of Oxford Balliol College (2001-2002) and a Master of Business Administration from University of Oxford Saïd Business School (2002-2003).

Brad lives in Chicago with his wife and two children.