The World Economic Forum Announces Young Global Leaders Class of 2013

  • 199 young leaders from 70 countries have been honoured by the World Economic Forum for their professional accomplishments and commitment to society.
  • The Young Global Leaders (YGL) Class of 2013 is composed of honourees from all sectors of society, with 50% from business and 50% from arts and culture, academia, civil society, government, media and non-profits; 42% are women.
  • The YGLs will join and co-create a community of insight and action that is committed to improving the state of the world.

Geneva, Switzerland, 12 March 2013 – The World Economic Forum announced today the Young Global Leaders (YGL) Class of 2013. These individuals have been recognized for their professional achievements and commitment to society.

The 199 YGLs come from 70 countries and all sectors of society (arts and culture, academia, business, civil society, media, politics and social entrepreneurship). The honourees come from East Asia (45), Europe (49), Latin America (16), the Middle East and North Africa (12), North America (40), South Asia (18), and sub-Saharan Africa (19).

This year’s class includes:

  • Martin Aspillaga (Peru), whose private equity firm Salkantay Partners focuses on economic development by small-scale operators and investors
  • William James Adams (aka, the US singer and recording artist, whose Foundation transforms lives through education, inspiration and opportunity
  • Miranda A. Ballentine (USA), who is leading Wal-Mart’s efforts to be supplied 100% by renewable energy, to create zero waste and to sell products that sustain the world’s resources and environment
  • Rachel Botsman (Australia), whose theory on collaborative consumption was one of Timemagazine’s “10 Ideas That Will Change The World”
  • Chelsea Clinton (USA), Board Member, Clinton Foundation and special correspondent for NBC News
  • Tara Fela-Durotoye (Nigeria), an entrepreneur who is building a globally respected make-up and skincare company of African origin
  • Dorcas Gachari (Kenya), an open-source e-government software entrepreneur who also mentors women engineers across Africa
  • Gian Tu Trung (Vietnam), an education activist
  • Tawakkol Karman (Yemen), the journalist and Nobel Peace Prize winner
  • Kim Dong Kwan (Korea), the Chief Strategy Officer of solar energy group Hanwha Solar
  • Winston Ma Wenyan (China), Managing Director and Deputy Chief Representative of the China Investment Corporation
  • Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy (Pakistan-Canada), the Emmy and Oscar award-winning Pakistani-Canadian journalist and documentary film-maker (video)
  • Mark Pollock (Ireland), the athlete and adventurer who became the first blind man to reach the South Pole
  • Nate Silver (USA), the statistician who calculated Barack Obama had a 90.9% chance of winning the 2012 presidential election and crunched polling data to successfully predict the result in 50 out of 50 states
  • Shivinder Mohan Singh (India), Managing Director of Fortis Healthcare, one of Asia’s largest hospital and healthcare organizations
  • Florence Verzelen (France), who became the first woman to head GDF Suez’s Qatar operations, overseeing all oil exploration and production
  • Akhilesh Singh Yadav (India), the youngest person to hold the office of Chief Minister of the state of Uttar Pradesh

Drawn from a pool of several thousand candidates, the 2013 YGLs were chosen by a committee, chaired by H.M. Queen Rania Al Abdullah of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. The selection was based on the proven track record of the individual, his or her leadership experience, ability to overcome adversity and commitment to society.

Becoming part of the YGL community is described by its members as a transformational experience. YGLs join as individuals, who are successful in their own field of expertise, but become part of a broader collective community that works to tackle a range of world issues.

“The Forum of Young Global Leaders provides a unique effort to engage the younger generation into the management of global affairs, working together and being integrated into the larger Forum community. The Young Global Leaders have an exceptional opportunity to improve the state of the world,” Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman, World Economic Forum.

The 2013 honourees will become part of the broader Forum of Young Global Leaders community that is currently composed of 756 outstanding individuals. The YGLs convene at an annual summit, which will be held this year in Yangon, Myanmar, on 2-5 June. The programme will include meetings with Myanmar government representatives, the business community and civil society, first-hand experience of working with, and learning from, local organizations and communities, along with workshops and cross-mentorship initiatives.


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