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.

Jamila Abass

Country Director, GiveDirectly, Morocco

Jamila Abass is one of the champions of AgTech revolution in Africa.She is the founder of M-Farm,an app that connects farmers and buyers and makes the supply chain more efficient.This ingenious innovation won different awards including the praise of the US president Barack Obama during his visit to Kenya in June, 2015. Jamila is an internationally recognized techpreneur. She received many accolades including 2015 New African Woman women of the year,Forbes 10 Female Tech Founders to Watch and 20 Young Power Women in Africa,Quartz’s 30 African Innovators as well as 2015 100 most influential Africans. She is also an Aspen New Voices, Poptech, Unreasonable and an Ashoka fellow.She has been a keynote speaker and influencer at AgTech and ICT for development events.

Faisal Abbas

Editor-in-Chief, Arab News, Saudi Arabia

Faisal J. Abbas is the Editor-in-Chief of the Riyadh-based leading Middle East English language daily, Arab News.

Under his leadership, Arab News (established 1975) relaunched with a more global, more digital direction. It has expanded its international presence through a large network of correspondents and a number of regional bureaus across the world.

Prior to joining the newspaper in 2016, Abbas has been the Editor-in-Chief of the Dubai-based English language service of Al Arabiya News Channel.

Abbas is a renowned columnist on Arab-international affairs and has also conducted interviews with a number of world leaders. He appears regularly on international media to comment on regional affairs.

Abbas has previously written for The Huffington Post and worked with both Asharq Al Awsat and Al Hayat pan-Arab dailies, Future Television of Lebanon and the International Resource Journal in London.

He has been the recipient of many media awards, including the Next Century Foundation’s Cutting-Edge Award (2009) for efforts in bridging the communication gap between the West and the Arab World and British Council’s UK alumni “Social Impact” award in Saudi Arabia (2017).

He holds a master’s degree from the University of Westminster and a bachelor degree from the Lebanese American University. He is also a graduate of the Executive Education Program of the Harvard Kennedy School, where he studied Global Leadership and Public Policy.

Abbas is a member of the editorial board of Al Arabiya News Channel, an associate fellow of the Cambridge Union Society and a member of the British Society of Authors.

In 2017, he published his first Arabic book called ‘Arabi/Englizi’ which describes London through Arab eyes.

Minoush Abdel-Meguid

Founder & Managing Director, Mezzan, Egypt

Long-term banker and private equity executive with stints at Goldman Sachs, HSBC and Citibank. Worked on several high-profile transactions. Took part in the reform of the Egyptian Capital Market Authority as the Assistant to the Chairman and head of corporate finance; led major restructuring efforts including the introduction of the region's first takeover code. Former Founding President, Egyptian Young Bankers Association. Helping young bankers network and improve their skill set. Since 2011, has dedicated more time promoting and supporting entrepreneurship especially in less privileged Egyptian cities outside Cairo and with female entrepreneurs by mentoring and participating in business plan competitions and lecturing on various related topics. Has also participated in various efforts linking women together as a basis for narrowing the cultural divide between Eastern and Western cultures. Was among six women taking part in the Australian Arab Women dialogue in Australia in 2013, in addition to other projects.

Tolkunbek Abdygulov

Governor, National Bank of the Kyrgyz Republic, Kyrgyz Republic

Tolkunbek Abdygulov holds Master degrees in Banking from IUK(1999), MA degree in Development Economics, Nagoya University, Japan (2005), MPA from UNT, USA (2007) and PhD degree in economics (Kandidat ekonomicheskih nayk) from Economic Institute of the National Academy of Science Kyrgyz Republic (2014). Tolkunbek has worked as an economist at the National Bank of the Kyrgyz Republic (Central Bank), as a consultant at the World Bank Headquarter, as a director of Informational Future Foundation (NGO), as a Chair of the Board of Directors of the Micro financial company, as an Expert at the Administration of the President of the Kyrgyz Republic, Head of Strategies and Program Service at the Central Agency on Development, Investments and Innovations of the Kyrgyz Republic, and as First Deputy Minister at the Ministry of the Economic Regulation of the Kyrgyz Republic. Since 7th May 2014 Governor of the National Bank of the Kyrgyz Republic (Central Bank of the Kyrgyz Republic). Since August 2017 to December 2017 Deputy Prime Minister of the Kyrgyz Republic. From December 2017 reappointed as Governor of the National Bank of the Kyrgyz Republic. Additionally Mr. Abdygulov works on part time basis as Associate Professor at Economic Department at the American University in Central Asia. In September 2013 Mr. Abdygulov received the National Prize for the young Scientists - Akyl Tirek. In September 2017 Mr. Abdygulov received the State award - Honorable economist of the Kyrgyz Republic.

Asanga Abeyagoonasekera

Senior Fellow, The Millennium Project, USA

Senior Advisor on Security and Geopolitics. Senior Fellow Millennium Project Washington DC. Former founding Director General of National Security Think Tank Sri Lanka(INSSSL); BSc in Computer Science; MBA; Counter Terrorism at Harvard University under South Asia Leadership Program(NDU NESA). Visiting Professor for Geopolitics and Global Leadership(Northern Kentucky University(USA) Author: Conundrum of an Island(2021), Sri Lanka at Crossroads (World Scientific,Singapore 2019), Towards a better world order(2015), Formerly: Adviser to the Minister of External Affairs and Executive Director, Lakshman Kadirgamar Institute for International Relations and Strategic Studies (National Think Tank); Director-General, BIDTI, a diplomatic training institute; Chairman, Foreign Employment Agency and Fishery Harbours Corporation; worked in the private sector with Sri Lanka Telecom and Hutchison. Currently: Visiting Lecturer International Security University of Colombo, International Political Economy University of London in Sri Lanka(RIC); International Columnist and Commentator. Founding Curator, Global Shapers Colombo Hub. Country Chair, Global Dignity. Alumni APCSS(Hawaii).

Hafsat Abiola

President and Chief Executive Officer, Women in Africa Initiative, France

Hafsat Abiola-Costello is the President/CEO of Women in Africa Initiative, a platform connecting leading and high potential women in Africa to facilitate their increased individual success and collective impact. A leader in Nigeria's pro-democracy movement, she served as a member of state cabinet in Nigeria industrial state from 2011-2019. She is also the Founder and President of the Kudirat Initiative for Democracy (KIND), an NGO that promotes the development of women as initiators of change by offering leadership training and raising awareness about harmful social issues such as violence against women. A prolific writer and speaker, Abiola-Costello holds an A.B. (Hons) in Economics from Harvard University and a Master's in International Development from Tsinghua University. She sits on several boards and is one of fifty councillors of the World Future Council. Abiola-Costello is the recipient of several national and international awards and the subject of the award winning documentary, The Supreme Price.

Iyinoluwa Aboyeji

General Partner, Future Africa, Nigeria

Iyinoluwa Aboyeji is an entrepreneur in the public interest. He is passionate about partnering with missionary talent and capital to build an African future. He spent the last few years as the CEO of Flutterwave, a business building payments technology and infrastructure to connect Africa to the global economy.

Over those years, he led the company to become one of the fastest growing payments technology businesses of all-time processing over $2 billion across over 50 million transaction with annual revenues of millions of dollars a year. It also attracted significant investment from experienced players in the global payments arena such as Y Combinator (investors in Stripe), Greycroft (investors in Braintree), Greenvisor Capital (Led by the Former CEO of Visa), Mastercard amongst others.
Prior to helping to co-found and lead Flutterwave, Iyinoluwa co-founded Andela - Africa's largest engineering organization with over 1000 software engineers which has received investment from Mark Zuckerberg and Google Ventures amongst others.

Iyin now heads Fund for Africa’s Future where he spends time helping founders, philanthropists and investors from around the world understand how to do build fast growing and impactful technology businesses in Africa. He is working to identify passionate and experienced missionary entrepreneurs with the integrity and courage to flawlessly execute in Africa while developing a data backed and informed point of view on how to turn Africa's largest challenges into incredible business opportunities.

Fund for Africa’s Future celebrates missionary entrepreneurs while empowering them to serve the next generation of missionary entrepreneurs.

Iyinoluwa holds a bachelor’s degree in Legal Studies from the University of Waterloo; and sits on the board of several institutions including Paris’ Share Africa Project, Rainbow Educational Services Limited and Filmo Realty.

Reuben Abraham

Chief Executive Officer, Artha Global, United Kingdom

Chief Executive Officer and Senior Fellow, IDFC Institute, a Mumbai-based think/do tank focused on state capacity and political economy. Non-resident scholar, New York University, and Senior Fellow, Milken Institute. Former Professor and Executive Director, Centre for Emerging Markets Solutions (CEMS), Indian School of Business (ISB).

Senior Advisor to Swiss Re and the Asia New Zealand Foundation; Board member, Centre for Civil Society, India's leading classical liberal think tank; Advocata, a Sri Lankan think tank; THNK, The Amsterdam School of Creative Leadership; GSM Association's Interact. Investment committee of Endiya, an early stage deep-tech fund. Former Independent Director, Soros Economic Development Fund (SEDF), an impact investment pioneer and Member, Global Advisory Board of Unicredit, Italy's largest bank. TED Global Fellow (2007); served on the TED Fellows Advisory Board. Legatum Institute Fellow (2013 and 2016/2017). Named to Wired Magazine's "Smart List 2012: 50 people who will change the world". Young Global Leader, World Economic Forum (2009).

MA, MPhil and PhD, Columbia University. Former: Associate Fellow in Global Economics, Council on Foreign Relations; Fellow, Public Policy Consortium; Sloan Foundation/CITI Telecommunications Fellow.

Tony Abrahams

Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Access Innovation Media Pty Ltd, Australia

Since 2003, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Ai-Media, founded in Australia in and now operating globally. A leader in live transcription for TV since inception, Ai-Media pioneered live captioning on social media, including a partnership with Facebook in 2017. Ai technology is also used to improve teaching practices, and outcomes for students with autism. LLB and BCom (Hons), University of New South Wales; MBA and MPhil in Economics, Rhodes Scholar.

Muna AbuSulayman

Partner, Transform VC, USA

Muna AbuSulayman, continuously named one of the 500 Most Influential Muslims in the World for her work in media, gender, leadership and education and as an iconic Arab media personality and humanitarian. Currently, She is also Social Impact Investor concentrating on using AI for education, media projects for awareness and Charity effectivenesst through Transform VC.

As the head of Directions Consulting and Partner 3S (Saudi Sustainable Solutions), she is focusing her development efforts on unemployment and entrepreneurship in the Arab world. As the former Secretary-General of the Alwaleed Bin Talal Foundation, she supported innovation and strategic initiatives to combat poverty, empower women and reframe the Islam-West dialogue. She is also a founding Co-Host of Kalam Nawaem, the Arab world's most popular TV shows.

AbuSulayman was appointed as the first Saudi UNDP Goodwill Ambassador. A Member of the Young Presidents' Organization, a Yale World Fellow and Aspen Institute Middle East Fellow. She also serves on several for profit and non-profit boards.

Moonshot: Making philanthropy and Government financial assistance more impactful.

Anu Acharya

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, mapmygenome.in, India

Ms. Anu Acharya is the CEO of Mapmygenome India, a Genomics company whose vision is “To touch 100 million lives using genomics”. In 2013, she introduced the concept of improved healthcare through personal genomics in India. Ever since, she has successfully pioneered the company through growing product lines, expanding affiliate network, and a Pre-Series A round of funding. Under her able leadership, the company has won several awards and honors: ET Startup Awards 2015 – Women Ahead​, Nasscom Emerge 50 – League of 10​, Emerging Company of the Year 2015 – Govt. of Karnataka, SMART CEO ​List of Top 50 Startups, VCCircle Innovative Healthcare Startup 2015​, and more. She is a Distinguished Alumna from IIT Kharagpur.
From 2000 until April 2013, Ms. Anu Acharya was the CEO of Ocimum Biosolutions, a global
genomics outsourcing partner for discovery, development and diagnostics, a company that began as a pure Bioinformatics company. Since co-founding the company in 2000, she has led the company through three strategic international acquisitions, two capital raises for equity investments and launch of several innovative products, solutions and services through its proprietary platform called RaaS (Research as a Service).
Prior to founding Ocimum Biosolutions, Ms. Acharya has had rich experience in the Telecom, IT and entrepreneurship arenas. She worked for a start-up in the telecommunications space called Mantiss Information and a consulting firm called SEI Information where she helped create a social networking site for entrepreneurs. Her experience is backed by education at premier institutions such as the Indian Institute of Technology at Kharagpur, India (IIT) and University of Illinois where she has two Postgraduate degrees in Physics and MIS.

Joseph Adelegan

Secretary-General, International Rubber Study Group, Finland

Professor Adelegan is the Secretary-General of the International Rubber Study Group (ISG) based in Singapore, the biggest worldwide community in the Rubber Industry. He is a C-Suite Executive and an international development expert, a Professor of Practice of Environmental Science and Engineering and a practitioner-scholar in management with over three decades of distinguished professional trajectory across 20 African Countries, Europe and United States. His work experience spans several organizations including the United Nations, development finance institutions, international organizations, government, non-governmental organizations, education, innovation and research institutions among others.

He has extensive experience in the sustainable investment, disruptive innovation and circular economy of the elastomer products. He has held Senior Roles at the United Nations as the Team Lead for the Global Circular Economy Program of the United Nations Technology Innovation Lab at the first European Lab in Finland and as a Senior Advisor at the United Nations Office of Project Services in Denmark.

Professor Adelegan was the Division Chief at the Office of the Vice President of the ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development, an International Development Financial Institution established by ECOWAS Treaty and covering 15 ECOWAS Countries. He was a representative of Africa and the Middle East at the Climate Investment Trust Fund at the World Bank, Washington DC, United States. His portfolios has included programs and projects funded by the European Union, World Bank, Green Climate Fund, Climate Investment Fund, African Development Bank, ECOWAS, African Union, NEPAD Agency, Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office (FCDO), Australian Aid, several United Nations agencies and funds among others.

Professor Adelegan have held several board appointments, created strategic partnerships and mobilized resources from development agencies, development finance institutions and several donor agencies. He was a Member of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council, Geneva, Switzerland and Non-Executive Director of the European Sustainable Development Organization among others.

He was a Professor of Environmental Science and Engineering at Universities in Africa, Europe and North America. He was a Professor of the Practice of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Venda, South Africa. He is a Visiting Professor of Water and Energy Engineering at the Pan African University, Institute of Water and Energy Sciences (including Climate Change), Tlemcen, Algeria established by the African Union. He was a Visiting Professor of Environmental Management at the Commonwealth University, London, United Kingdom. He is a Professor of Environmental Leadership at the Missional University, North Augusta, South Carolina, United States.

Professor Adelegan is a recipient of several global awards including: 2006 Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum, Geneva, Switzerland; recognition in 2007 as an Inventor Social Entrepreneur and Ashoka-Lemelson Fellow by the Ashoka Innovators for the Public and the Lemelson Foundation based in United States; 2009 Technology Pioneer of the World Economic Forum, Geneva, Switzerland; 2009 Technology Award Laureate and Prize Recipient of the Technology Museum of Innovation, San Jose, California, United States; 2010 Member of the Crans Montana Forum of New Leaders of Tomorrow, Geneva, Switzerland and 2010 Member of the Clinton Global Initiative, New York, United States among others.

He is in high demand as a regular speaker at international conferences in Africa, Asia, Europe, South America, North America and Australia. He has made appearance in CNN as 2008 Principal Voices on the “Economics of Energy” by CNN in association with Shell, Times and Fortune Magazine. He has travelled to over 120 countries in this regard. He has written over 30 publications on several topical issues.

Professor Adelegan earned Two Doctorate Degrees. He earned a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) Degree from the Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio, United States. He also gained a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) Degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the Nigerian Premier University of Ibadan. He is an alumnus of a number of executive programs including the United Nations University, Tokyo, Japan; the University of California, Berkeley, United States; Santa Clara University, Santa Clara, California, United States; John F. Kennedy School of Government and the Harvard Business School, Harvard University, United States among others.