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Bill Drayton

Washington, USA
Bill Drayton pioneered the field of social entrepreneurship. While a student at Harvard College, Balliol College in Oxford University and Yale Law School, he launched a number of organizations, including Harvard’s Ashoka Table, an interdisciplinary weekly forum in the social sciences, and Yale Legislative Services. After graduating from Yale Law School in 1970, he began his career at McKinsey & Company in New York. From 1977 to 1981, Bill served as Assistant Administrator at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, where he launched various reforms, including emissions trading (the basis of the Kyoto Protocol).     From 1981 to 1985, while working part-time at McKinsey, he founded both Ashoka and Save EPA, the predecessor to Environmental Safety. After receiving a MacArthur Fellowship in 1984, he was able to devote himself fully to Ashoka. In addition to his current role as Chairman and CEO of Ashoka, Bill is the chair of Youth Venture, Community Greens, and Get America Working!Bill’s numerous awards and honors throughout his career are a testament to his leadership skills and impact. The American Society of Public Administration and the National Academy of Public Administration jointly awarded him their National Public Service Award. In 2005, US News & World Report and Harvard’s Center for Public Leadership elected Bill Drayton as one of America’s Best Leaders, while in 2006, he was inducted to Harvard University’s 100 “Most Influential Alumni.” In 2007, Bill 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 Honorary Fellow Award, and the Goi Peace Foundation’s Peace Award. The next year, he was named a one of Utne Reader magazine’s “50 Visionaries Who Are Changing the World”.  In 2009, Bill was named Honorary Fellow from Oxford’s Balliol College and was awarded an honorary degree, Doctorate of Humane Letters, from Yale University. Bill received an Honorary Doctorate from NYU and the Essl Social Prize, for his work building the field of social entrepreneurship in 2010. In 2011, Drayton won Spain's prestigious Prince of Asturias award for his work promoting entrepreneurs; he was described as a "driving force behind the figure of social entrepreneurs, men and women who undertake innovative initiatives for the common good."  Most recently, Bill received the Harvard Kennedy School's prestigious Richard E. Neustadt 2012 Award for Public Policy.

My Guests Sessions

Thursday, June 27

9:30am IST

Friday, June 28

10:00am IST