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.

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Meet our members

Shu Wang

Lead Managing Consultant, ICF International Inc., People's Republic of China

Mr. Shu WANG was promoted to Deputy Director at a young age. He is heavily involved in the decision making process regarding Chinese national policies and actions on addressing climate change, namely the pilot programme on low carbon development, national strategy on building up the emission trading system (ETS), national obligation under the UNFCCC to account and report national Greenhouse Gas emission. Besides his responsibility for drafting and implementation of national strategy and policy, he is also leading a number of international cooperation on ETS or low carbon development, for example he is the team leader, representing China, in a World Bank programme, called Partnership Market Readiness which aims to finance developing countries to introduce market-based approach to combat climate change. Mr Wang holds a Bachelor Degree of Environmental Engineering, China University of Mining and Technology, and Master Degree in Environmental Economics from Renmin University of China.

Verena Pausder

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Pausder Ventures GmbH, Germany

As Founder and CEO of ​Fox & Sheep​ (2012) and ​HABA Digitalwerkstatt ​(2016) Verena Pausder is passionate about the digital life and education of children. While they can discover the digital world in a playful and gentle way by using Apps like “Nighty Night!” or “Little Builders” from Fox & Sheep, they look behind the digital scenes and are empowered to shape their world in an active and creative way at HABA Digitalwerkstatt. Both companies are success stories: Fox & Sheep is the largest developer of apps for kids in Germany and with over 20 million downloads among the top ten in Europe. HABA Digitalwerkstatt meanwhile has 8 locations throughout Germany (Berlin, Frankfurt, Munich, Hamburg etc) and started bringing mobile Digitalwerkstätten for digital education on schoolyards in North Rhine-Westphalia in November 2018. Verena is driven by a great vision: All children are supposed to access digital education equally. Therefore, Verena founded the non-profit association ​Digitale Bildung für Alle e.V.​ Commitment, networking and a hands-on approach are important to Verena: She started the initiative ​STARTUP TEENS​ to teach students entrepreneurial skills. Furthermore, Verena is a member of the Board of ​Alfred Herrhausen Society​. She also gives first-hand advice on current issues of digitalization on the political level: She serves as a member of the ​Innovation Council​ for the Minister of State for Digitalisation, Dorothee Bär, and she is a member of the ​“Young Digital Economy“​ Advisory Board of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. In 2016 Verena was named ​Young Global Leader​ by the World Economic Forum, in 2018 Forbes​ featured her as one of the 50 most influential women in European tech.

Patricia Ellen da Silva

Secretary of Economic Development, Government of the State of São Paulo, Brazil

Chief Executive Officer, Optum, Brazil. Optum is one of the major healthcare technology and services company in the world providing services and solutions to government, payors, providers, life sciences and employers. Former Partner at McKinsey & Company in São Paulo, for almost 18 years leading the public sector practice in Brazil and serving governments, non-profit organizations, thinks tanks and private sector enterprises in cities planning, education, healthcare, economic development and digital innovation. Co-Founder, Agora!, a think tank focused in engaging the society in public policies in Brazil. Lectures on adaptive leadership and digital innovation in a Master’s in Public Administration programme at the Center for Public Leadership (partnership with Harvard Kennedy School). Latest lines of research are citizen-centric management, ageing and digitization (mainly IoT - internet of things). Interested in understanding how these trends will affect healthcare services, future of jobs, inequality and quality of life in cities. 2013, MPA, Harvard Kennedy School; 2005, MBA, INSEAD; 2000, BBA, USP.

Shaurya Veer Himatsingka

Deputy Managing Director, India Carbon Limited, India

Shaurya is an Entrepreneur and currently serves as the CEO & Deputy Managing Director for India Carbon Limited. At the group level he is responsible for New Projects, Corporate Finance, Strategy, Mergers-Acquisitions & Joint Ventures.

He has been engaged with domestic acquisitions and establsihment of Greenfield Projects, in addition to diversifying into the Mobile Commerce, Real Estate and Infrastructure space.

He is currently leading his team to develop and establish North East India’s first Special Economic Zone in Guwahati, Assam.

Shaurya’s latest entreprenueurial venture is his setting up a Venture Builder under the brand iExponential, to build high value corpprations based on disruptive ideas and a mobile first strategy. He is currently involved in growing businesses in sectors ranging from Fitness & Healthcare and the ‘Internet of Things’ to Education and Last Mile Passenger Conn ectivity.

He has obtained his Master's in Business Administration (2005) and also his B.Sc from Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh.

Shaurya is the National Chairman for CII–Young Indians (13,000 Members) based on Nation Building and Youth & Thought Leadership.

Sam Kass

Partner, Acre Venture Partners, USA

Sam led food and nutrition policy for the Obama Administration, and was the Executive Director for First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move! Campaign. He was also the chef for the Obamas. Sam is now focusing on the intersection of health, climate change and food systems in numerous ways through strategy work and investing.

David Bray

Executive Director, People Centered Internet, USA

20+ years of experience leading transformative human, technology, public, and private collaborations for both Fortune 500 companies and mission critical organizations in ambiguous, uncertain environments. He enjoys serving as a creative problem solver and finds inspiration in tackling near "impossible missions". Dr. Bray currently serves as Chief Strategy Officer for the innovative geospatial analytics company MapLarge, in addition to leading as Executive Director for the People-Centered Internet coalition founded by Vint Cerf, co-creator of the internet. He also serves on multiple advisory boards and guest lectures at Harvard, Oxford, and Singularity Universities to executives, CEOs, and global leaders.

Led CDC's Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Program’s tech response to 9/11, anthrax, West Nile, SARS, monkeypox, and other international outbreaks. He worked in Afghanistan in 2009; later receiving the DOD’s Joint Civilian Service Commendation Award. Dr. Bray served as Executive Director the first-ever Bipartisan Commission reviewing R&D efforts of the entire U.S. Intelligence Community; later receiving the National Intelligence Exceptional Achievement Medal. He also championed as a non-partisan Senior Executive the efforts of positive #ChangeAgents to transform the FCC's legacy IT to award-winning solutions in 1/2 the time at 1/6 the price in turbulent, resource constrained environments; later receiving the Armed Forces Communications and Electronic Association's Outstanding Achievement Award in 2015 and the global CIO 100 Award twice.

Named a non-partisan Eisenhower Fellow to meet with leaders in Taiwan and Australia in 2015 on multisector strategies for the "Internet of Everything" and later was chosen to be a Marshall Memorial Fellow to Europe in 2018 focused on the ethics of data and AI. Dr. Bray has written 40+ scientific papers and has given multiple keynotes on new forms of leadership and the evolving impacts of emergent technologies on human communities, nation states, and global societies.

Pham Thi Ngan

Co-Founder, Tohe Social Enterprise, Viet Nam

Ngan is Co-founder of Tohe Social Enterprise in Vietnam. Tohe provides a creative learning playground for disadvantaged children to play and experience arts. Selected artworks from art classes has been used as prints on lifestyle products, branded under the name Tohe and distributed both in Vietnam and internationally. Portion of profits are used to fund the creative classes & scholarship program for talented children. Ngan is also the co-founder of Nguyencomm, a successful start up which is highly regarded in Vietnam as one of the most local creative firm in the advertising/communication. Their major clients include World Bank, British Council, Unilever, BP, Coca Cola.…etc. Ngan has been deeply touched by how disadvantaged children are marginalized and deprived in Vietnam – with limited access to resources, love. She would want TOHE to give children an opportunity to have fun with arts and to discover their unhidden talents. TOHE also demonstrate to these children that creative work as a potential career for those who are talented in these areas and that creative work also creates economic value and is becoming a new trend of international economy (creative economy).

Daniel de Boer

Chief Executive Officer, ProQR Therapeutics N.V., Netherlands

Daniel de Boer is a passionate entrepreneur with a drive to make a meaningful impact on society. Initially, he was focused on building IT companies; however, when his newborn son was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, a life-threatening disease with a limited life expectancy, it put everything in his life into perspective. de Boer decided to turn his focus towards finding a treatment for his son and other patients suffering from cystic fibrosis. He founded ProQR Therapeutics, which currently has 150 employees across Europe and the United States. Inspired by his work for cystic fibrosis patients and with a goal to impact many more lives, de Boer decided to broaden the scope of ProQR to include developing drugs for several other severe, rare diseases for which no treatments are available.

Soichiro Minami

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, BizReach, Japan

Swimmy is the Founder and CEO of BizReach, Inc. which has launched a series of industry disrupting HR Tech services and employing over 1,200 employees. Recently, the company was awarded a Special Prize from Prime Minister Abe at the Japan Startup Awards 2017 for creating innovative impact on the future of work.

Often referred to as the "Japanese Linkedin"​, BizReach (the service) has become the premier career networking platforms for professionals and talent seeking employers in Japan. Other services such as job search engine "Stanby"​, AI-driven career matching service "CareerTrek"​ and strategic HR Cloud "HRMOS"​ were subsequently released to make Japan's HR market more transparent and efficient thru the use of technology.

Swimmy also founded LUXA inside of BizReach, which is a discovery e-commerce site focused on empowering consumers in finding unique products and experiences. After growing to a 200 employee business in 4 years, LUXA was acquired by KDDI, Japan's 2nd larget mobile carrier, in 2015.

Before founding BizReach, Swimmy was a founding member of the Rakuten Eagles, the first Japanese expansion pro baseball team in 50 years, playing key roles in starting up the club, such as Assistant to CEO, Assistant General Manager and Head of Stadium Marketing. Swimmy started his career in investment banking at Morgan Stanley Japan.

Outside the office, Swimmy serves as a committee member on Ministry of Education's initiative to globalize Japanese high schools, as well as the priority policy committee on the Cabinet Office's initiative to increase gender equality.

Swimmy holds a couple BAs with high distinction in Quantitative Economics and International Relations from Tufts University.