Devex World 2022 Luminaries

Sharif Aly

As Chief Executive Officer at Islamic Relief USA, Sharif oversees a dynamic team of executives committed to carry out IRUSA’s humanitarian programs in the areas of disaster response, international relief and development and domestic social services programs. Sharif is a subject-matter expert and frequent speaker on various topics in the humanitarian and development sector, including the intersection of faith and humanitarian relief and development.

Sharif Aly

Sharif Aly

CEO at Islamic Relief USA


Ray Dalio

A global macro investor for more than 50 years, Ray Dalio founded Bridgewater Associates and ran it for most of its 47 years, building it into the largest hedge fund in the world. His investment innovations changed the way global institutions approach investing and he has received several lifetime achievement awards. Today, Ray remains an investor and mentor at Bridgewater and serves on its board. He is also a #1 New York Times bestselling author and an active philanthropist.

Ray Dalio

Ray Dalio

Founder, co-chief investment officer, and member of the Bridgewater Board


Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu

Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu is an Assistant Director General for the Division of Health Emergency Intelligence and Surveillance Systems in the Emergencies Programme of the WHO, leading the WHO Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence. Prior to this, Dr Ihekweazu was the first Director General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control. He led the transformation of the agency to one of the leading national public health agencies in the world, working closely with the Africa Centre for Disease Control.

Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu

Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu

Assistant director general at the World Health Organization


Hosna Jalil

Hosna Jalil is the former Deputy Minister of Policy and Plan at the Ministry of Women's Affairs of I.R. Afghanistan. Her portfolio was focused on ensuring women’s equal access to services & resources across the country, empowering & integrating women across all sectors and providing them a safe and healthy environment, and strengthening women’s role in peace & security. Currently, she is pursuing a master's degree in Strategic Security Studies, focusing on counterterrorism and irregular warfare at the US National Defense University.

Hosna Jalil

Hosna Jalil

Afghanistan’s former deputy minister of interior affairs


Michael Khoo

Michael Khoo is the co-founder of UpShift Strategies, a firm founded to help people and organizations develop strategies that breakthrough, make an impact, and create change. His work has focused on climate change disinformation, technology policy, women’s empowerment, reproductive health, environment and food issues, and international development.

Michael Khoo

Michael Khoo

Climate disinformation coalition co-chair at Friends of the Earth, and co-founder of UpShift Strategies


Elizabeth Wathuti

Elizabeth Wathuti is a passionate environmentalist and climate activist from Kenya. She is the founder of Green Generation Initiative (GGI) and the Head of Campaigns and Coordinator of Daima Coalition for the Protection of Urban Green Spaces at the Wangari Maathai Foundation. At the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow, she appealed to world leaders to open their hearts and act urgently to prevent the worst impacts of the climate crisis.

Elizabeth Wathuti

Elizabeth Wathuti

Founder, Green Generation Initiative


Sherrie Westin

Sherrie Westin is President of Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street. Westin leads the organization’s efforts to serve vulnerable children through mass media and targeted initiatives in the United States and around the world. She serves as Sesame Workshop’s chief mission ambassador, raising awareness, developing strategic partnerships, and cultivating philanthropic support to further the Workshop’s mission to help children everywhere grow smarter, stronger, and kinder.

Sherrie Westin

Sherrie Westin

President at Sesame Workshop


Noor and Aziz

Noor is a 6-year-old Rohingya girl who loves to learn and play. She lives in the Cox’s Bazar refugee camp with her twin brother, Aziz, and their family. Aziz, Noor’s brother, is a playful 6-year-old Rohingya boy who loves to use his imagination to create and act out stories about kings, queens, and animals.

Noor and Aziz

Noor and Aziz

Muppets, Sesame Workshop


Past Devex World Luminaries Include

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus serves as the first African director-general of the World Health Organization. Over the past three decades, he has transformed Ethiopia’s health system to expand quality care and access for tens of millions of Ethiopians and helped key global organizations like the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and the RBM Partnership to End Malaria operate with greater efficiency and effectiveness.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus

Director-general of the World Health Organization


Dr. Agnes Binagwaho

Agnes Binagwaho, M.D., M(Ped), Ph.D., is a Rwandan pediatrician and vice chancellor of the University of Global Health Equity. For 20 years, she contributed to reshaping the health sector in Rwanda through innovation and served in high-level government positions, including as health minister for five years.

Dr. Agnes Binagwaho

Dr. Agnes Binagwaho

Vice chancellor of the University of Global Health Equity and former Rwandan health minister


Jaha Dukureh

Jaha Dukureh is the executive director and founder of Safe Hands for Girls, a nonprofit working to protect young women and girls at risk of female genital mutilation, or FGM. She contributed to an investigation of the profile of FGM in the U.S. by former President Barack Obama’s administration, as well as a subsequent summit on ending FGM at the United States Institute of Peace. A renowned activist, Jaha was appointed UN Women’s regional ambassador for Africa in 2018.

Jaha Dukureh

Jaha Dukureh

Executive director and founder of Safe Hands for Girls


Christiana Figueres

Christiana Figueres is an internationally recognized leader on climate change. She was executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change from 2010 to 2016. During her tenure at UNFCCC, Figueres brought together national and subnational governments, corporations and activists, financial institutions and NGOs to jointly deliver the historic Paris Agreement on climate change.

Christiana Figueres

Christiana Figueres

Founding partner of Global Optimism and former executive secretary of UNFCCC


Rula Ghani

Rula Ghani, the first lady of Afghanistan from 2014 to 2021, has taken up the torch of amplifying the voices of Afghan women by using her position to elevate the voices of women in her adopted country. She also brings her insights on the challenges that face conflict-ridden countries struggling to support worthy lives amid long-term displacement, having worked directly with many of Afghanistan's uprooted citizens.

Rula Ghani

Rula Ghani

Former first lady of Afghanistan


Malcolm Gladwell

Malcolm Gladwell has been a staff writer for The New Yorker since 1996 and is the host of the podcast “Revisionist History.” He is the author of three New York Times bestsellers — “The Tipping Point,” “Blink,” and “Outliers” — as well as a collection of his New Yorker articles titled “What the Dog Saw” and, most recently, “David and Goliath.” Previously, he worked at The Washington Post.

Malcolm Gladwell

Malcolm Gladwell

Journalist and author


David Malpass

David Malpass was selected as the 13th president of the World Bank Group by its board of executive directors in 2019. He previously served as undersecretary for international affairs with the U.S. Department of the Treasury. He represented the U.S. in international settings, including at deputy finance ministerials for the G-7 and G-20 groups of nations.

David Malpass

David Malpass

President of the World Bank Group


DeRay Mckesson

DeRay McKesson is a civil rights activist focused primarily on issues of innovation, equity, and justice. He has advocated for issues related to children, youths, and families since he was a teen. As a leading voice in the Black Lives Matter movement and a co-founder of Campaign Zero, DeRay has worked to connect individuals with knowledge and tools and to provide citizens and policymakers with commonsense policies that ensure equity.

DeRay Mckesson

DeRay Mckesson

American civil rights activist and co-founder of Campaign Zero


David Miliband

A former foreign secretary of the United Kingdom, David Miliband now oversees the International Rescue Committee’s humanitarian relief operations in more than 30 war-affected countries and the resettlement of refugees in 25 U.S. cities. His professional accomplishments include having served as a member of Parliament and as secretary of state for the environment in the U.K.

David Miliband

David Miliband

President and CEO of the International Rescue Committee


Dr. Neil Buddy Shah

Dr. Neil Buddy Shah is the managing director of GiveWell. Buddy is a former CEO and a co-founder of IDinsight, where he provided significant evaluation, policy, and management expertise. He is a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations and has also represented IDinsight as an Echoing Green fellow, a Rainer Arnhold fellow, and one of Forbes’ top “30 Under 30” social entrepreneurs.

Dr. Neil Buddy Shah

Dr. Neil Buddy Shah

Managing director of GiveWell


Gayle Smith

Gayle Smith is CEO of the ONE Campaign. She has served as a top adviser on international issues for three U.S. presidents and is one of the world’s leading experts on global development and global health security. In 2021, Smith took on a temporary role at the request of the secretary of state and served as the U.S. State Department’s coordinator for global COVID-19 response and health security.

Gayle Smith

Gayle Smith

CEO of the ONE Campaign and former administrator of USAID


Megan Smith

Megan Smith was the third U.S. chief technology officer and assistant to the president, serving under former President Barack Obama. In 2017, Smith became the CEO and founder of shift7, which works on tech-forward, inclusive innovation for faster impact on systemic economic, social, and environmental challenges. Megan has over 25 years of experience working on innovative projects at Google and PlanetOut, while also co-founding Malala Fund

Megan Smith

Megan Smith

Founder and CEO of shift7, former U.S. chief technology officer, and former assistant to the U.S. president


Rory Stewart

Rory Stewart is a senior fellow at the Yale University’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, focusing on contemporary politics in crisis and on international development and intervention. Stewart was a British diplomat, development professional, and politician, ultimately serving as U.K. minister of state in the Foreign & Commonwealth Office and secretary of state for international development. He is the author of four books and has presented three documentaries focused on foreign policy.

Rory Stewart

Rory Stewart

Former U.K. secretary of state for international development


Ellen Stofan

Ellen Stofan is the undersecretary for science and research at the Smithsonian Institution. As a planetary geologist, Stofan served as chief scientist of NASA and as principal adviser to former NASA Administrator Charles Bolden on the agency's science programs, planning, and investments. Previously, she was vice president of Proxemy Research in Maryland and an honorary professor in the Earth sciences department at the University College London.

Ellen Stofan

Ellen Stofan

Undersecretary for science and research at Smithsonian Institution and former chief scientist of NASA


Mark Suzman

Mark Suzman leads the Gates Foundation's efforts to build strategic relationships with governments, private philanthropists, and other key partners to increase awareness, action, and resources devoted to foundation programs in both the U.S. and abroad. Additionally, he oversees the foundation's regional offices and strategic presence in Europe and China, as well as grant portfolios supporting crosscutting policy research, advocacy, communications, and select country-level delivery efforts.

Mark Suzman

Mark Suzman

CEO at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation


Nadya Tolokonnikova

Nadya Tolokonnikova is a conceptual artist and political activist from Russia. She is a founding member of the art collective Pussy Riot, focusing attention on feminism, LGBTQ rights, and human rights violations at home and abroad. In August 2012, she was sentenced to 2 years of imprisonment following an anti-Putin performance by Pussy Riot in Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Savior. This protest attracted international media attention and support from the likes of Peter Gabriel, Paul McCartney, Madonna, Björk, and Aung San Suu Kyi.

Nadya Tolokonnikova

Nadya Tolokonnikova

Russian conceptual artist and political activist


Stay tuned for speaker announcements for 2022

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