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Reeta Roy

President and CEO, Mastercard Foundation
Keynote Speaker

A thoughtful leader and an advocate for the world’s most vulnerable, Reeta Roy has worked tirelessly to build a foundation that is collaborative and known for its lasting impact.

Today, the Mastercard Foundation is one of the largest private foundations in the world. Its vision is a world where everyone has the opportunity to learn and prosper. Under Reeta’s leadership, the Foundation has focused its work on Africa and committed more than US$2.6 billion to advance education and financial inclusion. Its programs have improved the lives of more than 38 million people and their families.

A strong believer in listening, Reeta can often be found in the field, working directly with the people whom the Foundation’s programs serve.

Reeta’s childhood growing up in Malaysia helped her to develop her capacity to listen and the empathy with which she approaches the Foundation’s work. Reeta was a beneficiary of scholarships that allowed her to complete her education and mentors continue to support her growth as a leader.

Reeta received a Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and a Bachelor of Arts from St. Andrews Presbyterian College.

Full Biography

Lawrence S. Bacow

President, Harvard University

Lawrence S. Bacow is the 29th President of Harvard University.

Bacow was the Hauser Leader-in-Residence at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government’s Center for Public Leadership and served as a member of the Harvard Corporation, the university’s principal governing board. One of the most widely experienced leaders in American higher education, known for his commitment to expanding student opportunity, catalyzing academic innovation, and encouraging universities’ civic engagement and service to society, Bacow is the former President of Tufts University and past Chancellor and Chair of the Faculty at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

As President of Tufts from 2001 to 2011, Bacow advanced the university’s commitment to excellence in teaching, research, and public service and fostered collaboration across the university’s eight schools. Under his leadership, Tufts pursued initiatives to enhance the undergraduate experience, deepen graduate and professional education and research in critical fields, broaden international engagement, and promote active citizenship among members of the university community.

While at Tufts, Bacow emerged as a nationally recognized champion of expanding access to higher education through need-based student aid, while also advocating vigorously for federal support of university-based research. Bacow convened an international conference of higher education leaders in 2005 to initiate the Talloires Network, a global association of colleges and universities committed to strengthening the civic roles and social responsibilities of higher education. He launched Tufts’ Office of Institutional Diversity and highlighted inclusion as a cornerstone of the university’s excellence. He also strengthened relations between Tufts and its host communities and expanded outreach to alumni, parents, and friends. While guiding Tufts through the global financial crisis of 2008-09 and its aftermath, he brought to fruition the most ambitious fundraising campaign in the university’s history.

Bacow was raised in Pontiac, Michigan, by parents who were both immigrants, and whom he saw as embodiments of the American dream. Interested in math and science from an early age, he attended college at MIT, where he received his S.B. in economics and was a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He went on to earn three degrees from Harvard: a J.D. from Harvard Law School, an M.P.P. from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and a Ph.D. in public policy from the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.

Full Biography

Nancy Cantor

Chancellor, Rutgers University-Newark

Nancy Cantor is Chancellor of Rutgers University–Newark, a diverse, urban, public research university. A distinguished leader in higher education, Cantor is recognized nationally and internationally as an advocate for leveraging diversity in all its dimensions, re-emphasizing the public mission of colleges and universities as engines of discovery, innovation, and social mobility, and achieving the fulsome potential of universities as anchor institutions that collaborate with partners from sectors to help their communities thrive. At Rutgers University–Newark, she leads and promulgates efforts to leverage the university’s many strengths, particularly its exceptional diversity, tradition of high-impact research, and role as an anchor institution in Newark, New Jersey, through strategic investments in five broad areas in which the university’s strengths align with those of cross-sector partners: educational pathways from pre-K through college; equitable growth through urban entrepreneurship and economic development; cultivating creative expression through the arts and culture; strong, healthy and safe neighborhoods; and science in the urban environment.

Loretta Feris

Deputy Vice-Chancellor, University of Cape Town

Loretta Feris was Professor of Law in the Institute of Marine and Environmental Law at the University of Cape Town (UCT) where she taught natural resources law, pollution law and international environmental law. Since January 2017 she has been Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Transformation) at UCT. She holds the degrees BA (law), LLB and LLD from the University of Stellenbosch in South Africa and LLM from Georgetown University in the USA. Prof Feris is an NRF rated researcher and has published widely in the area of environmental law, including environmental rights, liability for environmental damage and compliance and enforcement of environmental law. She is a board member of Biowatch and Natural Justice and has until 2013 served on the board of the South African Maritime Safety Authority. She is a Law Commissioner of the World Conservation Union (IUCN) and a member of the IUCN Academy of Environmental Law where she served on the teaching and capacity building committee for three years.

Archon Fung

Professor, Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University

Archon Fung is the Winthrop Laflin McCormack Professor of Citizenship and Self-Government at the Harvard Kennedy School. His research explores policies, practices, and institutional designs that deepen the quality of democratic governance. He focuses upon public participation, deliberation, and transparency. He co-directs the Transparency Policy Project and leads democratic governance programs of the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the Kennedy School. His books include Full Disclosure: The Perils and Promise of Transparency (Cambridge University Press, with Mary Graham and David Weil) and Empowered Participation: Reinventing Urban Democracy (Princeton University Press). He has authored five books, four edited collections, and over fifty articles appearing in professional journals. He received two S.B.s — in philosophy and physics — and his Ph.D. in political science from MIT.

Mark Gearan

Director, Institute of Politics, Harvard University

Mark Gearan became the 19th director of the Institute of Politics at Harvard Kennedy School on March 1, 2018. A leading voice at the intersection of education and public service, Mark has held numerous leadership roles in American politics, government, and education.  

From 1999-2017, Mark served as the President of Hobart and William Smith Colleges (HWS), becoming the longest-serving president in HWS history. During his tenure, Mark oversaw an era of unprecedented growth that included doubling the Colleges’ endowment, a capital plan which raised $205 million to support facilities, endowment and annual giving, establishing 168 new endowed scholarships, and the completion of 80 significant capital projects. Following his time at HWS, Mark held an appointment as President-in-residence at HGSE for the 2017-2018 academic year.

In September 1995, President Bill Clinton appointed Mark as the 14th Director of the Peace Corps, after serving in senior positions in the Clinton White House. While Director, Mark oversaw the expansion of the Peace Corps program into South Africa, India, and Haiti as well as the establishment of the Crisis Corps, which would send former Peace Corps volunteers into crisis areas for six months or less to help during emergencies.

Born in Gardner, Massachusetts, Mark attended Gardner High School. He earned an A.B. in government cum laude at Harvard University in 1978 and a law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in 1991. He is the recipient of 13 honorary degrees. Mark is married to Mary Herlihy Gearan and they have two daughters, Madeleine, Harvard ‘15 and Kathleen, HWS ’21.

Full Biography 

Sara Ghoth

Student, Effat University

Sara Ghouth is a Saudi citizen, in her sophomore year studying Architecture at Effat University, Jeddah. Since her first year at the university she has been very active on campus, inspiring leadership in her colleagues. Currently, she is a member of the Student Government, the volunteering committee, and President/Captain of the Effat Volleyball Team, which she founded. She has participated in an wide range of volunteer work nationally and internationally, such as helping build a school in Zanzibar, Tanzania. She also works in Saudi Arabia with an organization that collects and distributes clothes to the underprivileged.

She has been participating in numerous projects to develop her leadership skills, such as the on-ground activation of the PepsiCo Change the Game Challenge, TedX, Jeddah’s 3rd International Book Fair, Effat’s 1st International Psychology Symposium, and the Al-Haramain Train‘ Inauguration. Sara has a long-term vision to use her degree to go back to Zanzibar and design sustainable, affordable, and ecological locally sourced community architecture.

Hlekani Kabiti

Post Doctorial Fellow, Risk & Vulnerability Science Centre, Walter Sisulu University

Hlekani Kabiti is a research fellow at Risk and Vulnerability Science Centre, at Walter Sisulu University, South Africa. She holds a PhD in Rural Development, Msc Agricultural Economics and a Bachelor’s Degree in Agri-business Management from the University of Venda. Her research interests include smallholder farmers, socio economic aspect of food security and climate change, sustainable rural livelihoods, local economic development, community engagement and civic participation. She has been involved in a number of university based research projects that focus on various socio economic and developmental issues. She has more than 10 years’ experience in community discussion forum facilitation. She has co-authored a chapter in a book facilitated by the Talloires Network, titled: Regional Perspectives on Learning-by-Doing: Stories from Engaged Universities around the World. Hlekani has been an integral participant in the Amplifying Community Voices (ACV) program, which promotes engaged scholarship in rural community development. She was one of the pioneer leaders of Amplifying Community Voices Students Association (ACVoSA), which leads efforts towards developing university students’ capacity to enhance their contribution to community-engaged scholarship for rural development. Hlekani served as a multinational research fellow at Kettering Foundation in 2016.

Rachel Kyte

Dean of The Fletcher School, Tufts University

Rachel Kyte is the 14th dean of The Fletcher School at Tufts University. A 2002 graduate of Fletcher’s Global Master of Arts Program (GMAP) and a professor of practice at the school since 2012, Kyte is the first woman to lead the nation’s oldest graduate-only school of international affairs, which attracts students from all corners of the globe and at all stages of their careers.

Prior to joining Fletcher, Kyte served as special representative of the UN secretary-general and chief executive officer of Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL). She previously was the World Bank Group vice president and special envoy for climate change, leading the Bank Group’s efforts to shift its operations and campaign for the Paris Agreement.

In her UN role and as CEO of SEforAll, a nonprofit public/private platform created from an initiative of the UN secretary-general, Kyte led efforts to promote and finance clean, affordable energy and low-carbon growth as part of the UN Sustainable Development Goals in the context of the Paris Agreement. She grew SEforALL into an organization that employs more than forty staff and has partnerships with companies, governments, and civil society organizations. 

Sara Ladrón de Guevara

Rector, Universidad Veracruzana

Sara Ladrón de Guevara is the current Rector of Universidad Veracruzana. She previously served as Provost of Acacemic Affairs at the same institution, between 1997 and 2001. In addition, she was the Director of the Museum of Anthropology of Xalapa between 1995 and 1997, and again between 2005 and 2013.

A scholar with more than 100 national and international publications under her name, Ladron has been a member of the National System of Researchers since 1993. Since 2005, she has served as an external evaluator. In 2007, she received INAH´s Popularization of Science Award to the best publication for her book Hombres y dioses de El Tajín (Men and gods of El Tajín).  She also received the acknowledgment “Mujer Veracruzana 2008” (Veracruz Woman of the Year 2008) from the Legislature and the Government of the State of Veracruz.

Ladrón graduated cum laude from UV with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology, and a specialization in Archeology. She went on to obtain a Master’s degree on Art History from the University of Paris I – Sorbonne and a PhD in Anthropology with an honorable mention from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).

Penn Loh

Senior Lecturer & Director of the Master of Public Policy Program and Community Practice, Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning, Tufts University

Penn Loh is Senior Lecturer and Director of the Master of Public Policy Program and Community Practice at Tufts University’s Department of Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning. He partners with various community base building organizations in the Solidarity Economy Initiative, Right to the City Alliance, and Center for Economic Democracy. From 1996 to 2009, he served in various roles, including Executive Director, at Alternatives for Community & Environment (ACE), a Roxbury-based environmental justice group. He holds an M.S. in environmental science and policy from Energy and Resources Group of the University of California at Berkeley and a B.S. in electrical engineering from MIT. Before joining ACE, he was Research Associate at the Pacific Institute for Studies in Development, Environment, and Security in Oakland, California and a Research Analyst at the Tellus Institute for Resource and Environmental Strategies in Boston. He has published broadly on environmental and social justice issues.

Mathew Johnson

Executive Director, Swearer Center for Public Service, Associate Dean of the College, Engaged Scholarship, Brown University

Mathew Johnson is the Executive Director of the Howard R. Swearer Center for Public Service and Associate Dean of the College for Engaged Scholarship at Brown University. Since being named executive director in 2016, Mathew has been responsible for a period of transformative change at the Swearer Center, which connects students, faculty and community leaders, and provides national and international leadership in the field of community engagement and engaged scholarship. Mathew is the director of the College and University Engagement Initiative (CUEI), an international community engagement in higher education field-building initiative, and the co-founder and co-director of the National Assessment of Service and Community Engagement with the Siena College Research Institute. Mathew also directs the Carnegie Foundation Community Engagement Classification, which is housed at the Swearer Center, and leads the multi-year international Carnegie Classification project which includes 26 institutions of higher education across the world. He sits on the editorial board for Gateways: International Journal of Community Research and Engagement; is an Ashoka Change Leader; and directs the ongoing development of the Cordes award-winning social innovation programming at the Swearer Center.

Georgina Manok

Assistant Director, Swearer Center for Public Service, Brown University

Georgina Manok manages research and assessment at the Center. She collaborates with her colleagues across units to design and implement center-wide and programmatic assessment & evaluation instruments. As part of her role, she also manages the College & University Engagement Initiative (CUEI), which includes the research and administration of the Carnegie Community Engagement Classification and the National Assessment for Service and Community Engagement (NASCE) survey ecosystem, among other components.

Lorraine McIlrath

Coordinator, Community Knowledge Initiative at the National University of Ireland Galway (Ireland)

Since 2004 Lorraine McIlrath has coordinated the Community Knowledge Initiative (CKI) at the National University of Ireland Galway. There she is responsible for developing and supporting civic engagement activities across the university with the CKI team, including service learning and student volunteering. She founded and is Principal Investigator (PI) of Campus Engage, a national Irish network to support civic engagement within higher education in Ireland. Since 2010, she has been a member partner in a nine university EU Tempus Funded Project to support the introduction of service learning to five universities in Jordan and Lebanon entitled the Tawasol Project.

Mapendo Mindje

Graduate Student, University of Rwanda

Mapendo Mindje a teaching staff at the University of Rwanda. He is completing a dual masters in Biodiversity Conservation and Natural Resources Management in Rwanda and BioGeoSciences at the University of Koblenz-Landau in Germany under the auspices of Erasmus+ scholarship. Currently, his research interest in is Herpetology where he identifies anurans using bioacoustics methods.

In 2017, Mapendo joined the Talloires network as a student representative on the Talloires Network steering committee.  Before beginning a scientific career, Mapendo assisted in teaching entrepreneurship skills to students, as a trained candidate from Solve the Equation East Africa (SEE-Rwanda) Project and acted as a facilitator in a number of Trainings organized by SEE Project supported by Youth Economic Program Initiative (YEPI). Currently, Mapendo mentors a number of undergraduate students. He also founded the Global community partners, a coalition of staffs and students from the University of Rwanda to strengthen social responsibility.

Anthony Monaco

President, Tufts University

Anthony P. Monaco became the thirteenth president of Tufts University on August 1, 2011. A distinguished geneticist, he had served as the pro-vice-chancellor for planning and resources at the University of Oxford since 2007. An accomplished leader, scientist and teacher, he brings to Tufts deep-rooted commitments to academic excellence and inclusion, a global perspective and an understanding of the consequential role that universities have in society.

President Monaco holds faculty appointments as a professor of biology in the School of Arts and Sciences and as a professor of neuroscience at Tufts University School of Medicine.

A native of Wilmington, Delaware, President Monaco received his undergraduate degree from Princeton University in 1981, and his M.D. and Ph.D. through Harvard Medical School’s Medical Scientist Training Program, where he specialized in the genetics of neurological disorders. His doctoral research led to a landmark scientific discovery: the gene responsible for X-linked Duchenne and Becker muscular dystrophies.

Cillian Ryan

Pro Vice-Chancellor, Nottingham Trent University

Cillian Ryan is currently Pro Vice-Chancellor International and Head of the College of Business, Law, and Social Sciences, where many of the university’s community engagement activities are based. As a member of the University Executive Team, Cillian works with the Deans and relevant Heads of Professional Services to drive the strategic direction of the Schools and with colleagues in the NTU Global Team to develop our international strategic initiatives and activity, particularly in relation to the Connecting Globally theme of the University’s strategic plan.

Nieves Segovia

President, Institución Educativa SEK

Educator and expert in learning innovation, Nieves Segovia is President of SEK Education Group, comprising of University Camilo José Cela and SEK International Schools. SEK was founded in 1892. The group currently has nine schools in Spain, France, Ireland and Qatar, as well as UCJC University in Madrid, with over 15,000 students.

Nieves Segovia sits on the Education Advisory Board of the Spanish Ministry of Education. She chairs the Felipe Segovia Foundation and is a member of the board of trustees of Fundación Europea Sociedad y Educación and Fundación Transforma España.  She is Vice-Chair of the Global Sports Innovation Center, the Club Excelencia en Gestión and the Edutech Cluster Spain. She is also a member of Ashoka Support Network.She founded and promotes the Global Education Forum, a community of education innovators, and SEK Lab, an Edtech accelerator. In 2017 she launched the UCJC Integra Programme, a university refugee education scheme, which has now been joined by Sphera, a cross-cultural social entrepreneurship hub and EachTeach, a global refugee teacher training initiative. Among other awards, Nieves Segovia has received the UNICEF Prize for Education in Values and is recognised among the most influential women in education. She is a regular speaker at education forums and writes frequently for the media and specialised magazines.

Nieves Segovia is a 2019 Harvard Advanced Leadership Initiative Fellow.

Alan Solomont

Pierre and Pamela Omidyar Dean, Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life, Tufts University

Alan Solomont currently serves as the Dean of the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life. The only university-wide college of its kind, Tisch College studies and promotes the civic and political engagement of young people at Tufts University, in our communities, and in our democracy. Tisch College recently announced the formation of the Civic Studies Program in Tufts’ School of Arts & Sciences, offering the nation’s first major in Civic Studies on any university campus. Alan’s career has been marked by his commitment to political activism, public service and organizing for the greater good. He was appointed by President Obama to serve as the U.S. Ambassador to Spain and Andorra from 2009-2013. Alan is the former Chairman of the Corporation for National and Community Service. He was first appointed to the board by President Clinton in 2000, reappointed by President George W. Bush in 2007 and elected chair in 2009. He also served as the National Finance Chair of the Democratic National Committee. Alan is a dedicated Tufts Jumbo: filling the roles of student, Instructor, Tufts parent, Trustee & Board Chair.

Adam Weinberg

President, Denision University

President Adam Weinberg has a long-standing commitment to reviving and strengthening the public purposes of higher education. Since becoming President at Denison in 2013, the college has become heavily involved in civic and economic renewal efforts in Central Ohio. In particular, he has focused on increasing university support of local community organizations engaged in addressing pressing problems throughout the region. This work has included expanding the efforts of students and faculty through service learning, community service, and publicly engaged scholarship, while also finding ways for the college to play a larger role by financially supporting community efforts.

He has also focused extensively on rethinking the role of college presidents as well as the ways in which colleges operate. He is acting to incorporate civic engagement and community work, not only in the research and teaching mission of the college, but also in how the college operates as an employer and large civic actor in the local community. In addition, President Weinberg has worked to increase Denison’s global focus.