Sunday, 30 September 2012

Introducing TEDxEuston 2012 Speakers - Jacqueline Novogratz

At that seminal TEDGlobal in Arusha in 2007 – most of the speakers were Africans. But there were a few others – including Jacqueline Novogratz. She shared a powerful story of learning lessons of listening and patience from a group of entrepreneurial market women in pre-genocide Rwanda. This skill of listening and patience led Jacqueline to found the Acumen Fund; a ten-year-old social venture fund renowned for its patience; entrepreneurs have up to ten years to achieve financial sustainability. 
In a recent article, Forbes writes about Acumen
Instead of shoveling aid dollars to causes or governments that give away life-­sustaining goods and services, Acumen espouses investing money wisely in entrepreneurs in the developing world who strive to solve problems, from mosquito netting to bottled water to affordable housing. It’s a new twist on the old adage about teaching a man to fish, except that Novogratz wants to build an entire fish market.
Talk about challenging conventional wisdom! This is why we have invited her to TEDxEuston! there are a handful of tickets still available - details on the website.  


Jacqueline Novogratz is the founder and CEO of Acumen Fund, a non-profit global venture fund that uses entrepreneurial approaches to solve the problems of poverty. Acumen Fund aims to create a world beyond poverty by investing in social enterprises, emerging leaders, and breakthrough ideas. Under Jacqueline’s leadership, Acumen Fund has invested more than $75 million in 65 companies in South Asia and Africa, all focused on delivering affordable healthcare, water, housing and energy to the poor. These companies have created and supported more than 55,000 jobs, leveraged an additional $200 million, and brought basic services to tens of millions. In December 2011, Acumen Fund and Jacqueline were on the cover of Forbes magazine as part of their feature on social innovation. Prior to Acumen Fund, Jacqueline founded and directed The Philanthropy Workshop and The Next Generation Leadership programs at the Rockefeller Foundation. Jacqueline currently sits on the advisory board of the Harvard Business School Social Enterprise Initiative, the Aspen Institute Board of Trustees, and the board of, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Council for Social Innovation. She was also appointed by Secretary of State, Hilary Clinton to the Department of State’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board. Her best-selling memoir The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap Between Rich and Poor in an Interconnected World chronicles her quest to understand poverty and challenges readers to grant dignity to the poor and to rethink their engagement with the world. She has an MBA from Stanford and a BA in Economics/International Relations from the University of Virginia. She has received honorary doctorates from the University of Notre Dame and Wofford College, and the Freedom From Want Award from the Roosevelt Institute in 2011. Follow Jacqueline on Twitter @jnovogratz

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