Paurvi Bhatt, Managing Director, Global Health & Community Well-being, Medtronic Foundation, and Board Member, Global Health Council
Paurvi Bhatt is Managing Director, Global Health and Community Well-being, at Medtronic Foundation where she leads strategic partnerships in health and well-being that are positioned to scale and sustain improved health outcomes for the underserved around the world. A seasoned global health and development leader, Paurvi is known for delivering innovative and successful cross-disciplinary solutions to challenging issues of scale and sustainability. Her focus includes strategic philanthropy and investment; corporate social responsibility; health benefit reimbursement, and partnership design particularly in emerging markets and resource poor settings. She has shaped best practice health and social responsibility portfolios in several companies including Levi Strauss and Co. and Abbott, as well as, with the government and nonprofit sector, at USAID, US GAO, and CARE. Her technical training is in health systems and economics – with specific focus on HIV/AIDS, women’s health and measurement. Paurvi is known as for her commitment to building the next generation of women leaders in global health. She serves on several advisory groups focusing on human resources, and global health including advising Last Mile Health and Women Leaders in Global Health. She holds Board leadership roles serving as Treasurer for Global Health Council (GHC), and Board Chair for GlobeMed. She holds a Masters of Public Health in health systems and economics from Yale University and Bachelor Degree in neuroscience from Northwestern University.
Raj Kumar, Founding President and Editor-in-Chief, Devex
Raj Kumar is the founding President & Editor-in-Chief of Devex, the media platform for the global development community. A social enterprise dedicated to ensuring global development efforts do more good for more people, Devex was born in 2000 when Raj was a graduate student at the Harvard Kennedy School. Today, there are 100+ Devexers around the world serving a global audience of more than one million aid workers and development professionals. Beginning as a kid in Kerala, India, Raj has witnessed firsthand determined and courageous development work in over 50 countries – it’s what drives the Devex mission to “Do Good. Do It Well.” He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a media leader and former humanitarian council chair for the World Economic Forum, and has interviewed on-camera and on-stage hundreds of global luminaries on the most important challenges of our time.
Anand Parekh, Chief Medical Officer, Bipartisan Policy Center
Anand Parekh is Bipartisan Policy Center’s (BPC) chief medical advisor providing clinical and public health expertise across the organization, particularly in the areas of aging, prevention, and global health. Prior to joining BPC, he completed a decade of service at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). As deputy assistant secretary for health from 2008 to 2015, he developed and implemented national initiatives focused on prevention, wellness, and care management. Briefly in 2007, he was delegated the authorities of the assistant secretary for health overseeing ten health program offices and the U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps. Earlier in his HHS career, he played key roles in public health emergency preparedness efforts as special assistant to the science advisor to the secretary. Anand is a board-certified internal medicine physician, a fellow of the American College of Physicians, and an adjunct assistant professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins University, where he previously completed his residency training in the Osler Medical Program of the Department of Medicine. He provided volunteer clinical services for many years at the Holy Cross Hospital Health Center, a clinic for the uninsured in Silver Spring, MD. Anand is also an adjunct professor of health management and policy at the University of Michigan School of Public Health. He currently serves on the dean’s advisory board of the University of Michigan School of Public Health, the Presidential Scholars Foundation board of directors, and the board of directors of WaterAid America.
Michele Sumilas, Managing Director, Bread for the World, and Board Member, Global Health Council
Michele Sumilas manages the daily operations of Bread for the World and Bread for the World Institute and assists the president in directing their overall strategies. She has extensive, successful experience as a manager. Before joining Bread, she worked at the US Agency for International Development (USAID), including as chief of staff. While at USAID, Michele played a key role in the U.S. response to the Ebola crisis. USAID is a 10,000-person government agency with 13 bureaus in Washington, D.C., and 75 missions around the world. Michele previously served on the House of Representatives’ appropriations subcommittee on state and foreign operations, where she oversaw the U.S. government’s development policy and budget. Prior to serving in government, Sumilas worked at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where she led a global health advocacy portfolio. She also served as the director of government relations for the Global Health Council.
John Townsend, Director, Country Strategy, and Acting Senegal Country Director, Population Council
John Townsend, PhD, is Director of Country Strategy at the Population Council. In this role, he provides leadership and support across the Population Council’s country offices with the aim to maximize the Council’s positive impact and ensure the organization’s knowledge is effectively influencing national policy and programs. Townsend joined the Council in 1984. He served as director of the Frontiers in Reproductive Health program; director of operations research programs in Asia and the Near East (1993–1998) in New Delhi; regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean in Mexico (1990–1993); director of operations research in Latin America and the Caribbean (1985–1990); country director for the Council’s Colombia office (1984); and was Vice President and Director of the Reproductive Health program from 2006 to 2017. Before joining the Council, Townsend served for eight years as a social scientist with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Institute of Nutrition for Central America and Panama. Townsend is chair of the Reproductive Health Supplies Coalition, past chair of the International Medical Advisory Panel (IMAP) of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), a member of the advisory board for Merck for Mothers, Chair of the Institutional Review Board of the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW), and Civil Society Representative (2017–2018) to the Global Financing Facility and the Investors Group, hosted by the World Bank. Townsend was a long-term member of the Interagency Gender Working Group (IGWG) in Washington, DC, and a member of the Rights & Empowerment working group of the FP2020 Initiative.
Her Excellency Dr. Joyce Banda, former President of Malawi and Founder of the Joyce Banda Foundation
Her Excellency Joyce Banda served as the President of the Republic of Malawi from 2012-2014. She was Malawi’s first female president and Africa’s second. Prior to assuming office, President Banda served as a Member of Parliament, Minister of Gender and Child Welfare, Foreign Minister, and Vice President of the Republic of Malawi. While serving as Minister of Gender and Child Welfare, she championed the enactment of The Prevention of Domestic Violence Bill (2006), which provided the legal framework to support the prevention and elimination of all forms of violence against women and girls. President Banda is credited for turning around an ailing economy, instituting a number of economic reforms which led to significant economic expansion. In the areas of democracy, good governance, and rule of law, President Banda repealed a number of draconian laws which weakened essential democratic institutions, infringed upon civil liberties, and restricted the freedom of the press. President Banda was named one of the world’s most powerful black women by Forbes in 2013 and 2014, and one of the most 100 influential people in the world by both TIME and Forbes. In 2014, CNN named her one of the most inspirational woman in politics. Her unwavering commitment to the promotion of women’s maternal health and reproductive rights led her to establish the Presidential Initiative on Maternal Health and Safe Motherhood, which spearheaded the fight against high maternal mortality rates and the promotion of safe motherhood in Malawi. During her presidency, Malawi registered considerable success in the areas of maternal and child health, reducing the maternal mortality ratio from 675 deaths per 100,000 live births to 460. In 1997, President Banda founded the Joyce Banda Foundation International, which seeks to transform villages in Malawi through their work in supporting women’s economic empowerment, education, maternal health and HIV/AIDS programs, leadership training, and support for human rights. In addition to this, she also serves on the Board of Nutrition International in Canada, Board Member of the Tana High Level Forum for Peace and Security in Africa. She has recently been appointed Member of Counsel of Former and Serving Female Heads of State along with Prime Minister Theresa May. She is also currently a Distinguished Fellow with the Woodrow Wilson Center and Center for Global Development. President Banda regularly serves as a panelist and motivational speaker at international conferences and fora, and has spoken at the International Conference on Women in Beijing, Harvard Medical School and the Kennedy School of Politics, the London School of Economics and Political Science, the New African Woman Forum, and the Women Deliver Conference, and George Washington University among others.
Nasserie Carew, Director, Global Communications & Office of Public Affairs, Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) & Board Member, Global Health Council
Nasserie Carew is currently Director of Global Communications & Office of Public Affairs at the Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG). In this role, she is responsible for the agency’s worldwide communications strategy and execution, including media relations, employee communications, and thought-leadership communications. BBG is a U.S. federal agency that oversees the Voice of America, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, the Middle East Broadcasting Networks, Radio Free Asia, and the Office of Cuba Broadcasting. Nasserie joined the BBG from the U.S. Department of State, where she served as Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of Public Affairs and led communications in the State Department’s Ebola Coordination Unit (ECU). Prior to that she served as the Managing Director of Public Affairs at the Millennium Challenge Corporation, where she managed a broad range of communications functions, working with leadership in the White House and across government agencies. A veteran of issues management, Nasserie has led international and national strategic communications for over 20 years. Nasserie is a member of the Global Health Council’s board of directors and has served on numerous advisory committees including the advisory body of the World Congress on Communication for Development. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Iowa and a Master’s degree from Howard University.