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    For Ryadh Sallem, being disabled is a relative concept—defined as much by a state of mind and societal prejudice as by physical incapacity. As every individual faces limitations but also possesses unique talents, Ryadh is redefining the concept of what it means to be “handicapped” by bringing the non-disabled to the world of the disabled and is working to eliminate exclusion.

    Dennis Lennartsson is elevating sign language to serve a richer purpose in society by addressing the needs of individuals and communities across geographies and sectors.

    Saïd Hammouche is working to fight discrimination in France by promoting diversity and bringing talented leaders from marginalized social groups to the forefront of French society. By entitling these individuals to managerial jobs, he is effectively bridging the divide between the corporate world and the country’s most economically troubled neighborhoods.

    Carolyn Laub is creating a safer middle- and high-school environment for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning youth by helping students found Gay-Straight Alliances and linking them in a youth-led network.

    Saurav is bridging the critical human and financial resources gap needed to unlock the economic potential of Panchayat, ensure maximum fund utilization and last mile service level delivery to the villages across India.

    Riccarda believes that maternity leave should be understood by parents, colleagues and employers as a time of profound learning, rather than simply time away from work.

    Alfonso is tackling school drop out through technology

    Through the “Stand Up” movement, Ashila Mapalagama is pioneering a fresh approach to an old problem; using a mutual assistance program that is an employee-based and self-financed social security system to create a collective identity and spur self-organization among predominately female Free Trade Zone (FTZ) workers and laborers who are affected by outsourcing in Sri Lanka.

    For over 25 years, Carmen has dedicated her life to ensuring that women at the base of the pyramid have access to the capital and support needed to transform their lives and improve their families’ standard of living. As the cofounder of ProMujer, a pioneer organization in the field of microfinance, Carmen has been a leader in the field of microfinance across Latin America.