Acumen Fund Announces Sixth Class of Global Fellows
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Acumen Fund, a nonprofit venture firm addressing poverty in South Asia and East Africa, announced its 2012 class of Global Fellows today from a highly competitive pool of 550 applicants in 65 countries. The program addresses a talent gap in the social sector, cultivating the next generation of global leaders by fusing the operational and financial skills of its young professional recruits with moral imagination to create new solutions to global poverty. During the course of the year-long program, Acumen Fund Global Fellows will augment their leadership capacity and provide much needed management support to Acumen Fund investees serving the poor.
Acumen Fund selected nine extraordinary individuals to follow in the footsteps of the last five classes of participants. “Through the Acumen Fund Global Fellows Program, we are investing in innovators and visionaries who will become the next generation of leaders, utilizing their skills and this year-long experience to help solve the ongoing challenges of global poverty,” said Jacqueline Novogratz, CEO of Acumen Fund. “The Fellows are the future architects of the social sector, designing the social change initiatives that are creating scalable, innovative methods for providing resources and dignity to the poor.”
This year’s class of Fellows is one of most impressive to date, with the nine participants of various backgrounds, religions and ages, hailing from 7 countries around the world, including Zimbabwe, India, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Iran, the United Kingdom and the United States. Professionally, their backgrounds are diverse, from management consultants at top firms such as Bain & Company and Capgemini, to program officers at international NGOs, including the Telecom for Basic Human Needs in Japan and King Khalid Foundation in Saudi Arabia, to entrepreneurs that have founded their own organizations like Globe All Peace, a nonprofit that promotes education in remote and impoverished regions in Iran. Additionally, the group is fluent in more than fifteen languages, and has collectively lived in and traveled to over fifty countries.
The Fellows program begins at Acumen Fund’s New York City office, where the cohort will gather in September for eight weeks of intensive and multidisciplinary leadership training. The skill-building exercises explore a combination of both hard and soft skills, including instruction on investment and valuation techniques, marketing and operations, business negotiation, as well as self reflection and storytelling. The Fellows will also be meeting with leaders from diverse backgrounds, and acclaimed writers and thinkers. After this training is completed, each recruit will be assigned an Acumen Fund investee for whom they will work during the following nine months.