You are here

Obama Scholar Talks & Reception

 Registration is closed for this event

Civic Leadership and Social Entrepreneurship

Co-sponsored by Columbia World Projects and the Tamer Center for Social Enterprise at Columbia Business School

Please join Professor Damon Phillips for this special evening with the inaugural cohort of Obama Foundation Scholars Program, a new collaboration between the University and the nonprofit foundation created by former president Barack Obama ’83CC. This event is an opportunity to hear from four civic leaders who will share their insights on social entrepreneurship and the impact they are making around the world. The Scholars will complete a one-year residency on campus at Columbia World Projects. A networking reception will follow the discussion. This event is open to everyone across Columbia University and beyond, interested in social entrepreneurship and international development.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019
6:00-8:00 p.m.

Columbia Business School
Warren Hall, Feldberg Space (Map →)
1125 Amsterdam Avenue, New York, NY 10025
(at the corner of 115th and Amsterdam Avenue)
Refreshments and hors d'oeuvres with RSVP

PROGRAM
6:00 p.m.  |  Doors Open and Networking
6:15 p.m.  |  Welcome Remarks
6:20 p.m.  |  Scholar Quick Talks, 10 minutes each
7:00 p.m.  |  Panel and Q+A, moderated by Professor Damon Phillips
7:25 p.m.  |  Networking
8:00 p.m.  |  Event ends

About the Speakers:

Obama Scholar Talks & Reception with Alice Barbe, Co-founder and CEO, SINGAAlice Barbe — France
Co-founder and CEO, SINGA

Alice Barbe is the co-founder and CEO of SINGA, a citizen movement that connects refugees in Europe with local communities by matching them through their common passions and competences. She is committed to changing the narrative about refugees by creating meaningful opportunities for them to engage with local communities. SINGA has brought together 30,000 people, including 3,500 refugees who have participated in its programs and more than 100 entrepreneurs who have created businesses and nonprofits to support innovation and migration.

Alice received her bachelor’s degree in law from the University of Montpellier in France and a master’s degree in political science from the University of Siena in Italy.

Obama Scholar Talks & Reception with Gabriela Galilea, CEO and Founder, Okimo Vision Ltd.Gabriela Galilea — Paraguay
CEO and Founder, Okimo Vision Ltd.

Gabriela Galilea is the founder of Okimo Vision, a company known for developing an alternative diagnostics software that uses sensors to detect vision problems in school-aged children. Through her work with Okimo, Gabriela aims to democratize access to visual healthcare through the creation of tools that can help diagnose and treat vision problems at a low cost. She has initiated conversations with governments to run pilots for visual screenings and reading tests that assess biometric, health, and academic performance data to detect visual impairment that could affect a child’s ability to learn early in their life.

Gabriela’s work is rooted in her personal experience as a visually impaired person in Paraguay. As a child, her parents had to take her abroad to receive treatment. There are only 250 ophthalmologists for a population of almost 7 million people in Paraguay and the majority of them are located in the capital. At Okimo, Gabriela’s goal is to provide every child in the world with preventative visual screenings and remote treatment using technology. Gabriela received her bachelor’s degree in law and diplomacy from the Catholic University of Asunción in Paraguay.

Obama Scholar Talks & Reception with Ana Maria Gonzalez-Forero, Chief Sustainability Officer, Fundación Por La Educación Multidimensional (FEM)Ana Maria Gonzalez-Forero — Colombia
Chief Sustainability Officer, Fundación Por La Educación Multidimensional (FEM)

For more than 25 years, Ana Maria Gonzalez-Forero has worked in Colombia organizing and advocating for the rights of vulnerable communities. Through her work with FEM, Ana helps rural ethnic communities secure the land ownership, self-governance, and resources guaranteed in Colombia’s National Development Plan. She has impacted more than 8,000 people who are now collective land title holders; an additional 7,000 that she has worked with are waiting for the state’s response.

As a social entrepreneur, Ana Maria founded two companies, Volunteer Hostel Cartagena and Cartagena Insider Tours, and is now incubating other projects such as Cafe Stepping Stone and Ninha. She also leads TRAKTI, a consulting firm and incubator for diversity and inclusion.

Ana received her bachelor’s degree in political science from Universidad Nacional de Colombia and her master’s degree in education from Universidad Pedagógica Nacional in Colombia.

Obama Scholar Talks & Reception with Omezzine Khelifa, Founder and CEO, Mobdiun – Creative YouthOmezzine Khelifa — Tunisia
Founder and CEO, Mobdiun – Creative Youth

Omezzine Khelifa is the founder and CEO of Mobdiun – Creative Youth, a social impact organization that empowers youth to lead change and help build a peaceful democracy in Tunisia. Mobdiun works with young people in marginalized communities targeted by violent extremists and provides them with opportunities to build skills and gain access to resources and networks to foster their creativity as peaceful builders of Tunisian society.

Through a community-based, youth development-centered approach, Omezzine and a group of sociologists collect and analyze data from youth living in areas traditionally targeted for recruitment by extremist groups. The data collected serves as a basis for a series of conversations with youth and the outcomes of these discussions are used to initiate a dialogue with multiple stakeholders, including government, the private sector, and civil society organizations to inform policy to counter radicalization.

Trained as an engineer, Omezzine was living and working in Paris prior to the Tunisian revolution and returned to Tunisia to support the country during this period of transition. She ran for political office and later served as a senior advisor in the Ministry of Finance before founding Mobdiun. She received her master’s degree in engineering from the École nationale supérieure d'informatique et de mathématiques appliquées de Grenoble in France.

Obama Scholar Talks & Reception moderated by Damon Phillips, Lambert Family Professor of Social Enterprise; Co-director, The Tamer Center for Social EnterpriseDamon Phillips
Lambert Family Professor of Social Enterprise; Co-director, The Tamer Center for Social Enterprise

Damon J. Phillips is the Lambert Family Professor of Social Enterprise. He received his PhD from Stanford University. Before joining Columbia in 2011, he was on the faculty of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business (from 1998-2011). During the 2010-2011 academic year he was a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University. Professor Phillips has expertise in social structural approaches to labor and product markets, entrepreneurship, innovation, organizational strategy and structure, as well as social network theory and analysis. His industry specialties are markets for professional services (law, consulting, investment banking) and culture (music industry). His 2013 acclaimed book, "Shaping Jazz," is an innovative study of the emergence and evolution of the market for recorded jazz. In addition to publishing in top journals within management and sociology, Professor Phillips has been on the editorial board of the Administrative Science Quarterly, an Associate Editor with Management Science, and was a Consulting Editor at the American Journal of Sociology. Professor Phillips is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate from Morehouse College with a bachelor's degree in physics. He earned his first master's degree in aeronautics and astronautics from Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He earned a second master's degree in sociology from Stanford University. Before pursuing his PhD at Stanford, he worked as an engineer and researcher affiliated with the U.S. Air Force (Lincoln Labs, MA) and was an executive in a family-owned electronics manufacturing business. He enjoys spending time with his wife and two daughters, learning to play instruments, and listening to music. Areas of Expertise: The Sociology of Labor Markets and Professional Careers Social Networks Managing Innovation, Creativity, and Change Entrepreneurial Management.


About the Obama Foundation Scholars Program:
The Obama Foundation Scholars Program at Columbia University brings together rising leaders from around the world who have demonstrated a commitment to finding solutions to challenges in their communities, countries and regions. Over the course of an academic year, the Obama Foundation Scholars will have the opportunity to deepen their knowledge and skills and to build new capacities and networks that will accelerate their impact in their home countries.

The inaugural cohort is comprised of twelve accomplished leaders, who are participating in an immersive program that brings together academic, skills-based and experiential learning, designed by Columbia University in consultation with the Obama Foundation. Scholars participate in a required course, which will run for the length of the academic year, as well as additional courses offered by Columbia University that are relevant to their specific field or values-based leadership, or that fill in gaps in their previous studies. The program also takes advantage of the unique opportunities for engagement that come with being at one of the world’s most important centers of research and with being in the City of New York.

To read more about the program, click here.

When
April 24th, 2019 6:00 PM through  8:00 PM