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Keynote Speakers

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(check out the 2012 information below while you wait)

Saturday Keynotes

Lauren Bush

Saturday 1:00 -2:00 PM
Harvard Kennedy School

Lauren is the Chief FEEDer and Co-Founder of FEED Projects, a charitable company with the mission to create good products that help feed the world.  Each FEED product sold supports organizations such as the UN World Food Programme (WFP) and UNICEF.  Lauren started her work as an Honorary Spokesperson for the WFP in 2004 and has traveled to many countries around the world to learn about the realities of poverty and hunger firsthand.  Inspired by her travels in 2005 she conceptualized and designed the initial FEED 1 bag, which feeds one child in school for one year through WFP, as a way for consumers to give back in a tangible and meaningful way.

In 2007, FEED Projects was founded to sell FEED bags. To date, FEED Projects has partnered with companies like Whole Foods Market, Barnes & Noble, the Gap, HSN, Disney, Pottery Barn, and many more.  Through the sale of eco-friendly products, FEED has been able to donated over $6 million dollars to the WFP’s school feeding program, which equates to over 60 million school meals to school children.

Lauren is also the Chairman of the Board and Co-Founder of the FEED Foundation, a 501c3 non-profit organization that supports programs and organizations that are effectively working to fight hunger and eliminate malnutrition throughout the world. For her work with FEED, Lauren has been awarded the 2011 Stevie Award for Best Non-Profit Executive, the 2011 Fashion Group International Humanitarian Award, and the 2010 Accessories Council Humanitarian Award.

Lauren was born in Denver, Colorado, and grew up in Houston, Texas.  Lauren graduated from Princeton University in 2006 with a B.A. in Anthropology and certificate in Photography.  She now resides in New York City, where she works on FEED and other socially conscious ventures.

Taylor Conroy
Destroy Normal

Saturday 1:00 -2:00 PM
Harvard Kennedy School

Taylor Conroy is the creator and “Philanthropreneur” behind, a crowd-sourcing online fundraising platform. TenInThree was created out of Taylor’s passion to see an end to “Poverty Porn”, the use of graphic imagery from the developing world to incite donations, and from his belief that if people are equipped with the right tools to do massive social good, they will. TenInThree routinely raises $10,000 with just three hours of prep time by any individual fundraiser, and has funded the construction of schoolhouses,water systems, and latrines in Kenya, Sierra Leone, Nepal, and India.

He began his career as the youngest firefighter in Canada at age 20 in 2003, and started a boutique real estate company on the side that quickly became the top condo sales company on Vancouver Island. After leaving the fire department in 2005 he utilized funds from the real estate company to fuel his early philanthropic initiatives in Uganda, Kenya, and Ecuador. These initiatives included a short documentary film on village life, as well as fully funding the construction of a library and a schoolhouse in Kenya’s Masai Mara region. He currently sits on the Lex Reynolds Adoption and Permanency Committee aimed at finding solutions for displaced children, and consults, pro-bono, for several local non-profit organizations.

In 2011, Taylor sold the shares in his real estate company to grow TenInThree and continue consulting for NGOs and non-profit organizations internationally. He has been credited with initiating school building and other charity projects in over a dozen countries. He currently resides in Costa Rica and has begun filming another documentary called ‘Adventure Philanthropy’ that takes place in Kenya, India, and Cambodia and features innovative approaches to Social Enterprise. He has been featured on,,, and

Kavita M. Shukla

Saturday 1:00 -2:00 PM
Harvard Kennedy School

Kavita is the Inventor and Founder/CEO of Fenugreen (, a pioneer in the movement towards sustainable, active, natural packaging. Fenugreen is addressing the massive global challenge of food spoilage (25% of the world’s food supply is lost to spoilage) with its simple FreshPaper innovation.

Low-cost, biodegradable, and made of edible organic ingredients, FreshPaper keeps produce fresh 2-4 times longer. By keeping food fresh from “farm to fork” in a large-scale and sustainable way, while reducing resource and energy costs, FreshPaper holds the potential to revolutionize the food economy.

Kavita developed and patented FreshPaper while in high school, after she happened upon its active ingredients in a home remedy given to her by her grandmother in India. She founded Fenugreen in 2010 as a simple project to learn more about our food system and to see how FreshPaper could help make it more sustainable and accessible. Since its launch, FreshPaper has spread rapidly to farmers, retailers, and consumers nationwide, and Fenugreen is now establishing initiatives to benefit local food banks in the U.S. and small-scale farmers in the developing world. Fenugreen’s mission is “Fresh for All.”

Kavita holds two patents, with four pending, and has received several international honors for her potential as an inventor-entrepreneur, including recognition from the Lemelson-MIT Foundation, the Cartier Women’s Initiative, the Davidson Institute, the Swiss Consulate, the French Ministry for Foreign Affairs, and Startup America. She has also been inducted into the National Gallery for America’s Young Inventors. In 2011, Fenugreen was recognized as one of the most innovative young companies in the world as Grand Prize winner of the Kauffman Foundation’s Startup Open. Kavita holds a BA from Harvard University.

Vikram Akula
SKS Microfinance

Saturday 6:00 – 8:00 PM
Networking Reception

Vikram Akula has been at the forefront of creating market-based solutions for financial inclusion.

Born in Hyderabad, India, Vikram Akula began working in rural development more than two decades ago, initially as a community organizer with the Deccan Development Society. In late 1997, he founded SKS Microfinance as a non-profit. He led the organization until 2004, when he joined McKinsey & Company in Chicago as a management consultant. In 2005, he returned to SKS Microfinance to lead its conversion to a for-profit finance company. He then led the company to a successful IPO in 2010, which was oversubscribed 14 times. Under his leadership, SKS scaled to a peak of 7.3 million active borrowers in 2010-11, by which time it had disbursed more than $5 billion in loans as well as provided a range of micro-insurance products. Vikram resigned in November 2011 after 14 years with SKS. His current social venture is in mobile banking in India.

For his work in financial inclusion, Vikram was named by TIME Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world 2006. He has a B.A. in Philosophy and English from Tufts, an M.A. in International Relations from Yale, a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Chicago, and was a Fulbright Scholar. He is the author of the book A Fistful of Rice; My Unexpected Quest to End Poverty Through Profitability, published by Harvard Business Press.

Vikram has received several awards for his work with SKS, including the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year in India (Business Transformation in 2010; Start-up in 2006). He was named as a World Economic Forum’s Young Global Leader in 2008, the Schwab Social Entrepreneur of the Year in India in 2006, and was an Echoing Green Public Service Entrepreneur Fellow from 1998-2002. He has been profiled in media ranging from the front page of the Wall Street Journal to CNN’s “Boardroom.”


Sunday Keynotes

Judith Rodin, Ph.D.
The Rockefeller Foundation

Sunday 2:00 – 3:00 PM
Harvard Business School

Judith Rodin is the president of the Rockefeller Foundation, one of the world’s leading philanthropic organizations.  Prior to the Rockefeller Foundation, she was the president of the University of Pennsylvania, and provost of Yale University.  She was the first woman named to lead an Ivy League Institution and is the first woman to serve as the Rockefeller Foundation’s president in its nearly 100-year history.  Since joining the Foundation in 2005, Dr. Rodin has recalibrated its focus to meet the challenges of the 21st century.  Today the Foundation supports and shapes innovations to strengthen resilience to risks and ensure that more people have access to the benefits of globalization.  Dr. Rodin is the author of more than 200 academic articles and has written or co-written 12 books and has received over 16 honorary degrees and serves as a member of the board for several leading corporations and non-profits.  Dr. Rodin is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and earned her Ph.D. in Psychology from Columbia University.

David Blood
Generation Investment Management

Sunday 4:45 – 5:45 PM
Harvard Business School

David Blood is co-founder and Senior Partner of Generation Investment Management.  Previously, he spent 18 years at Goldman Sachs including serving as co-CEO and CEO of Goldman Sachs Asset Management from 1999-2003.  David received a B.A. from Hamilton College and an M.B.A. from the Harvard Graduate School of Business.  He is on the Board of Harvest Power, New Forests, SHINE, Social Finance UK, Social Finance US, The Nature Conservancy, Foundation 1796 and Hamilton College; the Advisory Board of Bridges Ventures and the Harvard Business School Visiting Committee.

William Drayton
Ashoka: Innovators for the Public

Harvard Business School

As the founder and CEO of Ashoka: Innovators for the Public, Bill Drayton has pioneered the field of social entrepreneurship, growing a global association of nearly 3,000 leading social entrepreneurs who work together to create an ‘Everyone a Changemaker’ world.

Drayton has been a social entrepreneur since an early age — during his years as an undergraduate at Harvard and a law student at Yale, he launched a number of organizations, including Yale Legislative Services and Harvard’s Ashoka Table, an interdisciplinary weekly forum in the social sciences. In 1970, he began his career at McKinsey and Company in New York. From 1977 to 1981, Mr. Drayton served as Assistant Administrator at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, where he launched emissions trading (the basis of the Kyoto Protocol) and other reforms. In 1981, while working part-time at McKinsey and Company, he founded both Ashoka and Save EPA, the predecessor to Environmental Safety. With the support that he received when elected a MacArthur Fellow in 1984, he was able to devote himself fully to Ashoka. In addition to his current role as Chairman and CEO of Ashoka, Mr. Drayton is the chair of Youth Venture, Community Greens, and Get America Working!

Mr. Drayton has won numerous awards and honors throughout his career. In 1996, he was elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in recognition of his leadership in public service.  In 1999, Common Cause awarded him its Public Service Achievement Award.  In 2005, he received the National Wildlife Federation’s Conservation Achievement Award and was selected as one of America’s Best Leaders by US News & World Report and Harvard’s Center for Public Leadership. In 2006, he was recognized as being one of Harvard University’s 100 “Most Influential Alumni.” In 2007, he received the Duke University Center for the Advancement of Social Entrepreneurship’s (CASE) Leadership in Social Entrepreneurship Award, the University of Pennsylvania Law School’s 2007 Honorary Fellow Award, and the Goi Peace Foundation’s Peace Award. In 2009, he was named Honorary Fellow at Oxford’s Balliol College and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Yale University. In 2010, he received an Honorary Doctorate from NYU, as well as the Essl Social Prize, for his work creating and building the field of social entrepreneurship. In 2011, he received Honorary Doctorates from Babson College and Marquette University. Most recently, Bill received the John W. Gardner Leadership Award from Independent Sector, the World Entrepreneurship Forum’s Social Entrepreneurship Award, and the Prince of Asturias Prize for International Cooperation, Spain’s highest honor.