GSG grows Board of Trustees to span seven countries

LONDON/ NEW DELHI – Following elections, the Global Steering Group for Impact Investment (GSG) announces that six new Trustees will join its Board which, subject to approval by the UK Charities Commission, will increase to nine trustees from seven countries and four continents.

“As the GSG leads the world towards impact investing’s Tipping Point in 2020, the global leadership of our Board is crucial to our movement’s success.” said Sir Ronald Cohen, GSG’s co-founder and chairman. “Our new Trustees-elect bring the innovative vision and energy they have demonstrated in their home countries to leading our global movement.”

These appointments precede the GSG’s fourth annual Impact Summit, The Power of Impact: Driving to Tipping Point 2020, will take place in New Delhi, India, on 8-9 October 2018.

“We are delighted to bring our Impact Summit to New Delhi,” said Amit Bhatia, CEO of GSG. “The entrepreneurial energy and appetite for social change that characterize India today make it the perfect place to harness the power of impact in addressing the great challenges our global community faces.”

Following formal approval, the six new Trustees will join Sir Ronald Cohen, Nicola Cobbold, and Nick O’Donohoe as members of the Board of Trustees. They are:

  • Brigitte Mohn, Executive Board Member of Bertelsmann Stiftung (Founding NAB Chair, Germany)
  • Darren Walker, President of the Ford Foundation (NAB Chair, United States)
  • Giovanna Melandri, Founder and President of the Human Foundation (NAB Chair, Italy)
  • Masataka Uo, Founder and CEO of the Japan Fundraising Association and of Fundrex Co., Ltd. (NAB Vice Chair, Japan)
  • Rosemary Addis, Executive Director of Impact Strategist (NAB Chair, Australia)
  • Uli Grabenwarter, Deputy Director of Equity Investments at the European Investment Fund (Advisory Board Chair, EU)


The GSG is an independent global steering group catalyzing impact investment and entrepreneurship to benefit people and the planet. The GSG was established in August 2015 as the successor to and incorporating the work of the Social Impact Investment Taskforce established under the UK’s presidency of the G8. The GSG currently has 18 member countries, as well as active observers from leading network organizations. Chaired by Sir Ronald Cohen, the GSG brings together leaders from the worlds of finance, business and philanthropy.


Dr. Brigitte Mohn

Dr. Brigitte Mohn is the daughter of Bertelsmann Stiftung founders Liz Mohn and the late Reinhard Mohn (1921–2009). She studied political science, art history and German philology at the universities of Bamberg, Munster and Augsburg, earning a Master of Arts in 1991 and subsequently a doctorate. In 2001 she received an MBA from the Otto Beisheim School of Management in Koblenz and the Kellogg Institute in the United States.

Her career has included positions with the Kiel Institute for the World Economy; Bantam, Doubleday and Dell Publishing in New York; McKinsey in Hamburg; and Pixelpark in Switzerland.

Since 2001, she has served as chair of the German Stroke Foundation’s Executive Board. In 2002, she also became director of the Health program at the Bertelsmann Stiftung. She has been a member of the Bertelsmann Stiftung Executive Board since January 1, 2005.

Darren Walker

Darren Walker is president of the Ford Foundation.  Before joining Ford, Darren was vice president at the Rockefeller Foundation, overseeing global and domestic programs including the Rebuild New Orleans initiative after Hurricane Katrina. In the 1990s, as COO of the Abyssinian Development Corporation—he oversaw a comprehensive revitalization strategy, including building over 1,000 units of affordable housing and the first major commercial development in Harlem since the 1960s. Earlier, he had a decade-long career in international law and finance at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton and UBS.

Darren co-chairs New York City’s Commission on City Art, Monuments, and Markers, and serves on the Commission on the Future of Riker’s Island Correctional Institution and the UN International Labor Organization Commission on the Future of Work. He also serves on the boards of Carnegie Hall, the High Line and the Committee to Protect Journalists. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the recipient of thirteen honorary degrees and university awards, including the W.E.B. Du Bois Medal from Harvard University.

Giovanna Melandri

Giovanna Melandri, President and founder of Human Foundation, was a member of the Italian Parliament from 1994 to 2012 and has held the position of Minister for Culture (1998- 2001) and Minister for Youth and Sport (2006-2008).

During her political career, she has been mostly engaged in international relations, cultural affairs, human rights, youth policies, sport and environment. She has developed close cooperation with other multilateral organizations, such as UNESCO and WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency), whose creation she has successfully advocated for.

Giovanna started her career at Montedison study center where she worked from 1985 to 1988 and from 1982 to 1994 she was a member of the National Secretariat of Legambiente.  Since November 2012, Giovanna was nominated President of the MAXXI Foundation for contemporary arts.  Giovanna graduated cum laude in Economics at the University of Rome “La Sapienza” and was awarded an H.C. degree from the John Cabot University in 2000. In July 2003, she was awarded by the French President Jacques Chirac with the title of “Officier de la Legion d’Honneur”. 

Masataka UO

Masataka UO is the Vice Chair of the Japan National Advisory Board for the Global Steering Group for Social Impact Investment. He is also the founder and CEO of Japan Fundraising Association, a nationwide platform that promotes social impact investment and philanthropic giving in Japan, and the founder and CEO of Fundrex.Co.Ltd, a leading consulting company for social impact organizations. The Social Impact Center at the Japan Fundraising Association is performing a pivotal role in creating Social Impact Bonds projects, facilitating Social Impact Measurement Initiatives and advocating a dormant bank account utilization policy.

Aside from serving at the Economic Cooperation Bureau of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, he also worked for Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)

Rosemary Addis

Rosemary is Executive Director of Impact Strategist and established and Chairs the Australian Advisory Board on Impact Investing and Impact Investing Australia, which have led field building for impact investing in and from Australia since joining the Social Impact Investment Taskforce in 2013.

Over a 30+ year career, Rosemary has held senior roles across sectors, including as an equity partner at Allens-Linklaters, at leading community organisation The Smith Family, in Victorian Government leading national reform and in the Australian Government leading the first social innovation unit (2010-13).  She is widely published on policy, innovation and impact investment.

Rosemary is an experienced Chair and Director with a law degree (First Class Honours), the New York Bar (1995), Australian Institute of Company Directors diploma (2002) and international accreditation as a broker of cross-sector partnerships (2005). She has been recognised as one of the world’s leading lawyers (Chambers Global 2000-2002), for contributions to innovation AFR/Westpac 100 Women of Influence (2015), and was a finalist for Thought Leader of the Year in the Women in Finance Awards (2017).

Uli Grabenwarter

Uli is Deputy Director – Equity Investments at European Investment Fund (EIF). In this capacity he oversees EIF’s activities in Impact Investing, Technology Transfer and Venture Capital. He has led the build-up of the Social Impact Accelerator (SIA), the first pan-European social impact investing fund-of-funds and has brought impact investing as a new business line of EIF mainstream, with currently four impact investing product lines under management.

From 2010 to 2012 Uli conducted a 20 months research project on impact investing in collaboration with IESE University of Navarra in Barcelona and the Family Office Circle Foundation based in Switzerland, analysing best-market-practices for impact investing in the private equity and venture capital space. He is a visiting Professor for Venture Capital and Impact Investing at IESE University and regularly publishes articles and white papers. Uli is also chair of the European Impact Investing Luxembourg think-tank platform ( and member of several expert groups on impact investing and impact metrics across Europe. Uli holds a Master’s degree in Business and Finance of the University of Graz.


Sir Ronald Cohen, Chairman

Sir Ronald Cohen is Chairman of the Global Steering Group for Impact Investment and The Portland Trust.  He is a co-founder director of Social Finance UK, USA, and Israel, and co-founder Chair of Bridges Fund Management and Big Society Capital.

For nearly two decades, Sir Ronald’s pioneering initiatives in driving impact investment have catalyzed a number of global efforts, each focused on driving private capital to serve social and environmental good. These efforts are leading the global impact investment movement towards an Impact Revolution.

He chaired the Social Impact Investment Taskforce established under the UK’s presidency of the G8 (2013-2015), the Social Investment Task Force (2000-2010) and the Commission on Unclaimed Assets  (2005-2007). In 2012 he received the Rockefeller Foundation’s Innovation Award for innovation in social finance.

He co-founded and was Executive Chairman of Apax Partners Worldwide LLP (1972-2005). He was a founder director and Chairman of the British Venture Capital Association and a founder director of the European Venture Capital Association.

He is a member of the Board of Dean’s Advisors at Harvard Business School and a Vice-Chairman of Ben Gurion University; a former member of the Harvard University Board of Overseers; a former director of the Harvard Management Company and the University of Oxford Investment Committee; a former Trustee of the British Museum; and a former trustee of the International Institute for Strategic Studies.

He is a graduate of Oxford University, where he was President of the Oxford Union and serves as an Honorary Fellow of Exeter College.  He has an MBA from Harvard Business School to which he was awarded a Henry Fellowship.

In 2007, Sir Ronald published: The Second Bounce of the Ball – Turning Risk into Opportunity and today is authoring a book on the “Impact Revolution.”

Nicola Cobbold

Since October 2015, Nicola has focused on the current global refugee and migration challenge and the potential role for impact investment tools to help create solutions at scale. This followed nearly eight years as CEO of The Portland Trust, a British non profit ‘action tank’. Previously Nicola worked as a lawyer, specialising in media and copyright. Prior to specialising in media, Nicola worked as a corporate lawyer at Linklaters in London and Paris.

Interspersed with her legal career, Nicola worked in reconciliation and coexistence. In addition to compiling a report for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in South Africa, she was a trustee (2001-2003) of the Jewish Council for Racial Equality. She has been a governor of the Hebrew University (2010-2013) and a Board Member of Seeds of Peace (2011 – 2014) and the Eastern Mediterranean International School in Israel (2013-15). She was a founding shareholder of Social Finance Israel and is a Trustee of The Portland Trust and The Institute for Jewish Policy Research. She is a steering committee member of the World Commission on Forced Displacement and a member of the CGD Innovative Finance for Resettlement Working Group.

Nicola is a graduate of Cambridge University.

Nick O’Donohoe

Nick O’Donohoe is Chief Executive of CDC and is also a member of the CDC Board. He was previously a Senior Adviser to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation where he specialised in the use of blended finance models. Prior to taking this role, Nick co-founded, Big Society Capital (BSC). He served as its Chief Executive Officer from 2011 to December 2015.

Previously Nick worked at JP Morgan, as Global Head of Research. He was a member of the Management Committee of the Investment Bank and the Executive Committee of JP Morgan Chase, as well as the senior sponsor for JP Morgan’s Social Finance Unit. Nick co-authored “Impact Investments: An Emerging Asset Class”, published by JP Morgan and the Rockefeller Foundation. Prior to JP Morgan, he worked at Goldman Sachs.

Nick served as Chairman of the UK Dormant Assets Commission. He is also a board member of the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) and Deputy Chairman of the Global Steering Group on Impact Investment.

Nick has an MBA from the Wharton School and a BA in Mathematical Economics and Statistics from Trinity College, Dublin.

For more details, please reach out to:

Meg Massey                                                                 

Contact: +12028275712

 Sukanya Narain

Contact: +917042898247



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