Community

The Forum of Young Global Leaders is a community of innovators from diverse backgrounds and experiences. Search current members and alumni by year awarded, sector or region.

Mark Pollock

Explorer and Founder, Mark Pollock Trust, Ireland

Mark helps people to build resilience and collaborate with others so that they achieve more than they thought possible.
Unbroken by blindness in 1998, Mark became an adventure athlete competing in ultra- endurance races across deserts, mountains, and the polar ice caps including being the first blind person to race to the South Pole. He also won silver and bronze medals for rowing at the Commonwealth Games and set up a motivational speaking business (www.markpollock.com).
In 2010 a fall from a second story window nearly killed him. Mark broke his back and the damage to his spinal cord left him paralysed. Now he is on a new expedition, this time to cure paralysis in our lifetime by exploring the intersection where humans and technology collide.
As a speaker, Mark is best known for his 2018 TED Talk focused on resolving the tension between acceptance and hope (go.ted.com/markandsimone) delivered jointly with his fiancée, Simone George. It gathered over 1.5 million views in its first 6 months online and has been translated into 12 languages. He has inspired millions of people in hundreds of organisations and is a Davos, World Economic Forum, InnoTown, F.ounders, EG and Wired speaker.
Co-Founder of the global running series called Run in the Dark (www.runinthedark.org), Mark has been selected by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader and is a former member of the Global Futures Council on Human Enhancement. He is a UBS Global Visionary, is on the Board of the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation (USA) and is a Wings for Life Ambassador (Europe).
Mark is the subject of the acclaimed documentaries ‘Blind Man Walking’ and ‘Unbreakable – The Mark Pollock Story’, he has been awarded honorary doctorates by The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and also from Queens University Belfast. And, he holds a diploma in Global Leadership and Public Policy for the 21st Century from Harvard University, degrees from Trinity College Dublin and The Smurfit Business School.

Dee Chu Ying Poon

Chief Executive Officer, PYE, Esquel Group, Hong Kong SAR, China

Dee Poon is the Managing Director of Brands and Distribution at Esquel Group, a global leading textile and apparel manufacturer with operations located worldwide.

Dee is a board member of the West Kowloon Cultural District Authority (Hong Kong), a member of the Asia Advisory Board at Christie’s, on the International Advisory Committee of Harvard University’s Asia Center (Cambridge, MA), a Member on the Family Advisory Council of The Ownership Project at Oxford Saïd Business School, as well as on the Global Steering Committee of Social Entrepreneurship to Spur Health (Hong Kong & London). She is on the Board of Directors for the Esquel - Y.L. Yang Education Foundation. In 2014, Dee was selected as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum and designated a Fellow of Aspen Institute’s China Fellowship Program.

Actively engaged in the arts, Dee sits on the International Council of the Tate (London), and the International Council of The Museum of Modern Art (New York). She serves on the Board of Directors of the China Arts Foundation (Beijing & New York), and has served on the Board of Directors of Zuni Icosahedron (Hong Kong). Dee has also been on the Performance Committee at the Whitney Museum of American Art (New York), a member of the Lincoln Center China Advisory Council (New York), and was a co-founder of the Ambassadors of Design (Hong Kong). Her 42-second short film “An Exercise in Futility,” shot as part of 42x42, was screened at the Beijing International Film Festival as well as the Cannes Film Festival.

Before joining Esquel, Dee was an Editor-at-Large for iLook Magazine and a featured columnist for Modern Weekly, where she wrote about sustainability. Her 2008 pop-up retail venture DYSEMEVAS was one of the first to highlight the emerging Chinese design scene outside of China.

Dee graduated from Harvard College in 2004 with a BA in philosophy

Vikas Pota

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, T4 Education, United Kingdom

Vikas Pota is the Founder and CEO of T4 Education, a digital media platform he established as a response to the challenges posed by the pandemic to education globally. T4 is building the world’s largest community of teachers and schools and is providing opportunities for educators to network, collaborate, share best practices, and support each other’s efforts to improve learning. T4 works to amplify teachers’ voices because the world in which every child receives a good education will only be built by listening to those at the heart of education. Vikas was previously CEO of a philanthropic foundation, has been recognised as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum and as one of London’s 1,000 most influential persons. Vikas was recently named European regional honouree for the 2022 YPO Global Impact Award.

Dina Powell McCormick

Global Head, Sustainability and Inclusive Growth; Global Head, Sovereign Business, Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC, USA

Dina is global head of sustainability and inclusive growth. In this role, she partners with leaders globally to advance our sustainability efforts across all of our businesses. Dina is also global head of the firm’s sovereign business, responsible for helping build and enhance the firm's relationships with global sovereign clients. She serves on the Management Committee and the Firmwide Client and Business Standards Committee. Dina rejoined Goldman Sachs in 2018 as a partner in the Investment Banking Division after serving as the US Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategy from 2017 to 2018.

Dina initially joined the firm in 2007, and from 2007 to 2017, she led the Impact Investing Business and the Environmental Markets Group, which deployed more than $5 billion in market-based loans and equity to drive sustainable economic development and revitalize under-served communities. During this same period, she was also president of The Goldman Sachs Foundation, developing and overseeing two major initiatives to drive economic growth and opportunity — 10,000 Women and 10,000 Small Businesses — that successfully provided business education and capital to women and small businesses, respectively.

Earlier in her career, Dina served as Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs and Deputy Undersecretary of Public Affairs and Public Diplomacy and as a senior White House advisor as Assistant to the President for Presidential Personnel.

Dina is currently a non-resident Senior Fellow at the Future of Diplomacy Project at Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs.

Tatiana Prazeres

Senior Fellow, University of International Business and Economics, People's Republic of China

Senior Fellow at the University of International Business and Economics, in Beijing. Formerly, Secretary of Foreign Trade of Brazil and Senior Adviser to the Director-General of the World Trade Organization. WEF Young Global Leader 2014.

Shalini Puchalapalli

Managing Director and Country Manager, Google Cloud Storage, Google, India

Shalini is Managing Director and Country Head for Google Customer Solutions where she is building the digital ecosystem for India. Prior to her current role, she was the Category Director with Amazon India and CEO for Lehar Foods Business for PepsiCo, where she turned around the business through business model transformation. Shalini did her bachelors in engineering from IIT, Madras, Personnel management from XLRI and MBA from INSEAD.

Shalini is a leader with 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 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 the last 25 years. She is a mother of a 16 year old son and attempts to be cool by getting deeper into Avengers and Star wars.

Lewis Pugh

Founder, Lewis Pugh Foundation, South Africa

Lewis Pugh is an ocean advocate and an endurance swimmer. He is the only person to have completed a long distance swim in every ocean of the world. He has pioneered swims in the most challenging environments on earth, including the Antarctic, the North Pole and the Himalayas, and developed an understanding of the beauty and fragility of life and its many ecosystems.

Lewis is a leading figure in efforts to protect our oceans. He is currently working on creating a series of Marine Protected Areas around Antarctica. The negotiations require consensus among 25 countries, a number of which have long standing disputes with one another. The media have dubbed his efforts as "Speedo diplomacy".

Lewis is also one of the world’s foremost inspirational speakers, with TED describing him as "a master story teller”. In 2011 he was inducted into the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame. In 2013 he was appointed UN Patron of the Oceans. And this year he was named National Geographic's Adventurer of the Year.

Lewis read law at the universities of Cape Town and Cambridge.

Shweta Punj

Deputy Editor, India Today, India

Shweta Punj is a Senior Editor with India's largest and oldest political news magazine, India Today. She writes on political economy and is the author of India's first definitive book on failure, 'Why I Failed.'

She is also the co-founder of Whypoll, an organisation that has been instrumental in using technology and data to target women safety in Delhi.

Laetitia Puyfaucher

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Pelham Media SARL, France

Laetitia Puyfaucher is Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Pelham Media in France. She is a graduate of HEC Paris, Sciences Po, the Sorbonne and the London School of Economics, and the author of Le Media Humain (2011). Puyfaucher won the Nico Colchester Prize in 1999, an award sponsored by the Financial Times and The Economist, as well as the Trajectoires HEC au Féminin Prize in 2011. She is a Supervisory Board Member of Steria (RIA).

Arif P. Rachmat

Co-Founder and Executive Chairman, PT Triputra Agro Persada, Indonesia

Co-Founder & CEO of TAP Group, one of the largest oil palm companies in Indonesia. TAP has over 300,000 hectares of land bank, where more than 150,000 hectares has been planted. TAP employs over 24,000 people. Since 2011, he has been the Commissioner of PT. Kirana Megatara (KM), Indonesia’s largest crumb rubber processor and exporter. He is the majority shareholder of PT Triputra Persada Rahmat with a stake at BTPN Syariah Bank. The three companies fall under Triputra Group, with significant investment in publicly listed companies Adaro Group, the largest coal energy in Indonesia, and DSN group (palm oil and wood) and, is ranked no. 15 in Globe Asia’s 100 Largest Conglomerates in Indonesia August 2014. Upon graduation from Cornell University, he worked for General Electric Company in the U.S. for 7 years in various leadership roles including Six Sigma and Corporate Audit Staff. He is the Head of GK Indonesia foundation and a member of Young Global Leaders, an initiative of The World Economic Forum, as well as a member of Young Presidents Organization. He sits at the Rabobank Advisory Board Food Agri in Asia He also a member of Indonesia Business Association (APINDO), and Advisory Board of Indonesian Palm Oil Association "(GAPKI)". He also a member of Asia Business Council and ASEAN Business Club.

Faisel Rahman

Chief Executive Officer, Fair Finance, United Kingdom

Social entrepreneur Faisel Rahman founded Fair Finance in 2005 to tackle financial exclusion and high-cost lending in the UK. He has a background in campaigning on issues related to poverty in the UK and in international development with the Grameen Bank and the World Bank in Bangladesh. He created the UK’s first microcredit programme in 2000, which he grew into Fair Finance.

He remains an occasional Guardian columnist, writing about exclusion, and was awarded an Ashoka fellowship in 2007. In 2009 he was recognised as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum, in 2014, made an OBE for Services to Community Finance, awarded Honorary Doctorate from the University of East London in 2016, and made an Honorary Fellowship for Social Enterprise in the UK.

Sanjiv Rai

Founder and Chief Solver, Genic AI Solutions P. Ltd., India

Graduate, University of Calcutta; studies, Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. Innovator and serial entrepreneur. Founder and former Chief Architect, CHANDRA project, NASA, aimed towards setting up a communication infrastructure on the moon for permanent human inhabitancy and human migration to Space. Founder: Hyperspace.ai : Inverted Ideas Lab; Genic.ai ; Billion Innovators; AceWP Innovation Labs; innovate2Learn; smartSAPS; BioTab; coolATM; ChazeMe; Rosenbridges smart cities. Active and leads initiatives at: IEEE Artificial Intelligence; Nanotechnology Council, GEOSS; ASQ-ECD; World Economic Forum. Author, several intellectual properties, including industry standards, copyrights, articles, books and patents. Recipient of several awards.