Global Executive Team
Diana joined the organization after graduating from Brown University in 1988 with a degree in South Asian Studies. As an undergraduate, her year-long study abroad in Varanasi, India led her to see the need for local solutions to solve global problems. This insight inspired her to pursue an internship at Ashoka, where she created one of its core programs, Fellowship Support Services, (now Fellowship) which expanded the resources available to Ashoka’s social entrepreneurs to connect them to one another. She became the President of Ashoka in 2005.
Iman is the Regional Director for Ashoka Arab World (AAW) which she launched in 2003. Iman is a Leadership Group Member and Global Diaspora Leader in Ashoka. She is the co-founder and chair of ADEW, a CSO providing credit and legal aid for impoverished women. With more than 30 years of experience in strategic planning, policy formulation, community development and project design, Iman has dedicated her life to working with marginalized and voiceless groups -female heads of households in Egypt's poorest areas.
Maria Valeria Budinich
Valeria Budinich is a social entrepreneur with 25 years of experience innovating at the intersection of business and society. As a Leadership Group Member at Ashoka, she founded "Full Economic Citizenship", a global initiative that has enabled over 50 hybrid business models in housing, small farmer agriculture and other industries. Currently, she is launching Ashoka’s Changemaker Economy, a global initiative on the new way of organizing for value creation for the good of all. In 2012, she received the Harvard/McKinsey M-Prize for management innovation for her pioneering work.
Conrad W Carter
Mark is a member of the Leadership Group at Ashoka, based in Hong Kong. Mark started with Ashoka in 2007 as a Senior Advisor on Social Finance, based in London. He became UK Director in 2011, and European Director in 2014. Mark led the European Diamond from 2014-19, before moving to Hong Kong where he has launched the Hong Kong Chapter for Ashoka. Prior to joining Ashoka, Mark founded Chelwood Capital, a global social investment advisory firm, which he continues to actively manage.
Anne B Evans
Anne Evans has extensive experience as a social entrepreneur, private sector management consultant, senior executive and nonprofit trustee. Formerly a partner with the MAC Group (now Gemini Consulting) she was also Executive Officer/Administrator of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. She has consulted to and served on the boards of a variety of nonprofit organizations, including as board chair for the Levine School of Music.
Konstanze is a member of the Leadership Group and leads Ashoka’s new global initiative on Tech & Humanity. She’s also the head of Ashoka in North America. A social anthropologist and journalist by background, she founded Ashoka in her native Germany in 2003 and co-led Ashoka’s emergence and growth in Western Europe, introducing the then radically new concept of social entrepreneurship to the continent. She also co-founded the Globalizer, an initiative re-defining what we mean by scale. She worked for CNN and FAZ and was a board member for GLS Bank, Germany’s leading ethical financial institution, before moving to the US in 2015. She is on the advisory board of CASE at Duke University.
Michael joined Ashoka as one of its earliest staff in 1986. During three years he helped build the early Ashoka in Mexico, Nigeria, and Pakistan. 30 years later Michael rejoined Ashoka to build an Everyone A Changemaker movement with partners in Southeast Asia. Before rejoining Ashoka, Michael was an intrapreneur at Wells Fargo in San Francisco, Hong Kong, and London. During 26 years at Wells Fargo he built and led 7 new businesses in small business credit, and in intellectual property and patenting.
Ross joined Ashoka in November 2014. Ross has founded and grown more than 20 businesses around the world.
Arnaud Mourot is Co-Director Ashoka Europe. A member of the French team of Olympic wrestling for 10 years and a graduate from ESCP Business school, Arnaud has been involved in the humanitarian sector since he finished his studies. He founded and led the NGO “Play International” (formerly Sport Sans Frontières) in 1999. He has also contributed to the development of various Social Businesses and CSOs in France. He launched the operations of Ashoka France/Belgium/Switzerland in 2005.
Ana Saenz de Miera
Ana’s leadership started young. As a Scout member from the age of 8, she was taught early what it means to have an idea, and to make it happen. By the age of 16 she was determined to make the Scouts accessible to children from the age of 6 (instead of the minimum 8-year mark). Today, every single Scout group in Spain includes this range, with a total of 3,000 members. Today, Ana has created a movement in Spain that brings together social entrepreneurs, companies, public administration, youth and schools to work towards a society where everyone realizes their changemaking potential.
Pape Samb comes to Ashoka with 20 years of leadership experience and an established record in strategic planning, program development and management, content management, fundraising, proposal writing, training and facilitation. At 13, he started a women’s empowerment and youth economic development organization. At 17, he was president of CAP-Jeunesse, a Senegalese network of youth organizations; and was hired by the Senegalese government to train youth in entrepreneurship, business and grassroots organization management.
Anamaria served as Ashoka Global Co-President from 2005 to December 2007. She joined Ashoka in 1996 to launch a joint venture between Ashoka and McKinsey & Company. She has worked on business social bridges, the Ashoka global business plan, and a global shared vision process. She launched the Instituto Arapyaú in Brazil in 2008 with leading business entrepreneur Guilherme Leal, of Natura Cosmetics.
I was born and has lived most of my life in São Paulo, Brazil. As a Sociologist, I've always dedicated to the themes of democracy and social innovation, with most of her projects and ideas focusing on the field of education. In this area, I co-led the creation of a couple very innovative schools in Brazil. For some years, I was co-director of Learning City School, an organization focused on local development processes guided by education.
Vishnu, a lifelong entrepreneur now leads Ashoka’s global teams on Planning, Budgeting, and Global Partnerships. He has been at Ashoka for 11 years and during that time, he has led multiple teams across South Asia, South East Asia and at the Global office. He joined Ashoka to lead a project on affordable housing, which after demonstration of enabling over 15,000 homes across India - is now a separate organization he co-founded called the Indian Housing Federation. Similarly, his work on malnutrition has led to the creation of another organization called Nourishing Schools Foundation which has now reached over 40,000 children in schools across India and helping them take charge of their own nutrition.
Earlier in his career, he co-founded two internet technology companies in Singapore. Looking back, both the companies were based on ideas that were ahead of their times - Artificial intelligence and Machine learning and another a fin-tech business. One of the companies was acquired in the early 2000s and he discovered his deep interest in social development after that. He is passionate about creating
As a professional photographer/artist and writer, Nana observed Japan start failing after its economic prosperous period roughly between 1982 and 1993. The observation made her believe Japan was missing a role-model for youth and triggered her to search social change-makers and recount their stories to Japanese audience as a new role model. Along the journey of hunting and interviewing over 150 social innovators between 2000 and 2006 she noticed some of the interviewees were recognized as “Ashoka Fellows”.
Stuart Yasgur leads Ashoka’s Social Financial Services (SFS) globally. To date, Ashoka SFS has supported dozens of pioneering Social Investment Entrepreneurs and mobilized over $500 million in funding. Earlier in his career, Stuart was Managing Partner of a New York-based consultancy and has taught at New York University and the London School of Economics. Stuart received a PhD from the London School of Economics, a Master’s degree from Columbia University, and a Bachelor’s degree from Cornell University. To connect with Stuart, contact [email protected] or @StuartYasgur on Twitter.
Global Board of Directors
Bill Drayton, USA
Chair and CEO, Ashoka
Sushmita Ghosh, India
Ashoka President Emeritus
After graduating at the top of her class at the University of Delhi, Sushmita served as a Sub-Editor, Research Director and Executive Director of Maneka Gandhi’s national Indian news magazine Surya from 1979 to 1982. She went on to pursue a successful career in freelance journalism, working with every major mainstream publication in India, including The Times of India, The Hindustan Times, Business Standard, Sunday Magazine, and others. After more than two decades with Ashoka, Sushmita has moved on to an honorary role of Leadership Team Emerita.
Following her career in journalism, Sushmita served as Ashoka’s country representative for India from 1989 – 1997. During that time, she helped Ashoka launch its new programs in Latin America and directed its European efforts. In 1992, Sushmita founded Changemakers, which she evolved from a magazine for social entrepreneurship to an online platform for open source problem solving. That service now offers instruction in changemaking for social change organizations and ordinary citizens, ultimately aspiring to form a self-energizing community of changemakers. Subsequently, she became Ashoka’s International Vice President and the Executive Director of Changemakers. She later served as President of Ashoka from 2000 to 2005.
Sushmita is also a board member of several non-profit organizations around the world, and a council member at the American India Foundation. Her leadership has driven Ashoka’s growth and its support programs for the global citizen sector. She has a special interest in how social entrepreneurs use online platforms to drive social change on a global scale and is currently developing ways of gathering and sharing knowledge in this area.