IWD 2023


SALEEMAH ABDUL-GHAFUR Communications Director and Chief of Staff in the Office of the CCO Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Saleemah is an accomplished leader with extensive experience in global policy, advocacy, and communications. Before joining the foundation, Saleemah served as the founding director of the African Leaders Malaria Alliance (ALMA – one of our key advocacy partners), which comprises every sitting African head of state and government. ALMA developed a diplomatic apparatus based on accountability to generate African-owned and African-led ways to accelerate malaria elimination and improve health outcomes for women and children. In this role, Saleemah functioned as a combined chief of staff and chief communications officer. Additionally, Saleemah played a key role as director for the United Nations Secretary General’s Special Envoy for Malaria. 

Saleemah has also been advising African heads of state on the End Malaria Council (EMC) which is co-chaired by Bill and Ray Chambers. This includes briefing leaders on key trends and new data and policy related to the global malaria burden and presenting strategic opportunities to expand access to lifesaving commodities.

Previously, Saleemah was an associate director of Corporate Volunteerism at Hands on Atlanta and has served as a consultant to non-profits and governmental organizations on projects focused on alleviating poverty through interfaith dialogue and action programs.  
Saleemah is also a community leader with a strong commitment to and passion for civic engagement through activism, volunteerism, and advocating for gender equality in Muslim communities in the U.S. and abroad. In her free time, Saleemah is a writer and speaker who chairs a non-profit, non-partisan organization working to boost civic engagement in the American Muslim Community. 

CEO, The Carter Center

Paige Alexander joined The Carter Center as chief executive officer in June 2020.

Alexander has had a distinguished global development career, with over two decades of experience spanning the government and nonprofit sectors. She has held senior leadership positions at two regional bureaus of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), covering missions and development programs in 25 countries.

Between 1993 and 2001, Alexander held several roles in USAID’s Bureau for Europe and the Newly Independent States Task Force, including deputy assistant administrator, chief of staff, director for the Democracy and Governance Office, deputy director of the Bosnia Task Force, and country desk officer. After leaving for 10 years to work in a leadership role in the nonprofit sector, Alexander returned to USAID in 2011 in the Senate-confirmed position of assistant administrator for Europe and Eurasia; in 2015, she was again confirmed to lead the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Bureau, overseeing 1,000 employees, programs in 12 countries, and more than $1.4 billion in annual funding.

Founder & CEO, Wish for WASH

WISH FOR WASH has officially restructured to operate as a collective comprised of two sister organizations, Wish for WASH LLC (or Wish for WASH Holdings) and Wish for WASH Thinks, Inc. Wish for WASH Holdings is a for profit entity that acts as a holding company for intellectual property related to the collective (including patents, trademarks, etc) whereas Wish for WASH Thinks Inc is a 501c3 Georgia based nonprofit organization. Wish for WASH Thinks Inc is the operational arm of the collective where all of the collective’s research, design, and educational projects are housed. Together – the collective between these sister companies is called Wish for WASH.

Singer, Writer, Poet and Speaker

Amira Daugherty is a singer, writer, poet, and speaker. She holds a B.A. in Political Science from Agnes Scott College and an A.S. in Criminal Justice from Georgia State University. Through her music and community works, she continuously engages her passion for public service. She has served as the Deputy Finance Director for Carolyn for Congress, as well as an intern for Rep. Hank Johnson in Washington, D.C. through a highly competitive fellowship. She uses her singing, rap, and poetry to inspire and empower those who believe in uplifting others.

In the greater Atlanta area, Amira has worked with several non-profit and youth organizations. She currently volunteers with local mock trial teams to sharpen their skills in debate, and with the DeKalb County 4-H Club to teach children and adolescents about healthy living, drug and alcohol awareness, and money management. Throughout her career, her goal is to use creativity to create space to empower diverse groups of people to achieve their goals.

Rule of Law Advisor, UN Women

Beatrice currently serves as the Rule of Law Advisor (Justice and Constitutions) and Focal Point on Indigenous and minority Issues at UN women. She began her career in her native country, Ghana, as a gender and child law specialist, initially providing legal aid to indigent women and children through the Ghana Legal Aid Board, the Ghana Federation of International Women Lawyers and Women in Law and Development. While in Ghana, she also served as the Programme Officer for the Structural Adjustment Participatory Review Initiative, a tripartite exercise between government, Civil Society and the World Bank. 

Within the UN system, her work experience has been with UNICEF Ghana, as the first Chief of Protection, the African Centre for Gender and Social Development of the Economic Commission for Africa, as a Gender Advisor and UNICEF New York as a Human Rights Programming Specialist. She has supported law reform efforts in the fields of women’s land rights, inheritance, marital property and violence, while also engaging in research and policy development in the areas of women in agriculture, women’s land rights and harmful practices.

Emeritus Professor of Economics and former Director of the Program on Gender Analysis in Economics (PGAE)

Maria S. Floro is Professor Emerita of Economics at American University in Washington, DC. She served as co-director of the Graduate Program on Gender Analysis in Economics (PGAE) between 2008 and 2021. Her publications include books on Informal Credit Markets and the New Institutional Economics, Women’s Work in the World Economy, and Gender, Development, and Globalization: Economics as if All People Mattered (co-authored) as well as monographs and journal articles on gender, vulnerability, informal employment, food security, care work, time use and well-being, financial crises, urban poverty, household savings, credit, asset ownership, and climate change. She collaborated in early 2000 with researchers, women’s groups, and community organizations in Thailand, Philippines, Ecuador, and Bolivia in conducting fieldwork on vulnerability, gender, and informal employment in urban poor communities. She recently led the Care Work and the Economy (www.careworkeconomy.org) project in 2017-2021.

President and CEO, Georgia Budget Policy Institute

Staci (she/her) serves as president and chief executive officer of the Georgia Budget and Policy Institute. A native of Warner Robins, Georgia, she has spent her career advocating for liberation and freedom, most recently serving as president and CEO of Planned Parenthood Southeast and Planned Parenthood Southeast Advocates.

​Staci’s lifelong commitment to social and economic justice was strengthened by her work at Planned Parenthood, where she most recently supervised operations at seven health centers and managed government relations and public affairs across two corporate entities and three states, including Georgia. An accomplished executive, she brings to GBPI over 25 years of experience fighting for policies that advance economic opportunity through impactful leadership, relentless advocacy and creative management.

Secretary for Women’s Affairs, Mayor’s Office of Bogotá, Colombia

Diana holds a PhD in Sociology from Northwestern University. She holds a M.A. (Sociology) from Northwestern University, a LLB from the University of Los Andes (Colombia) and a B.A. in Economics. She is the director of the Environmental Justice thematic line at Dejusticia. Her work focuses on environmental democracy, comparative environmental politics, and the political economy of development. In addition, she has carried research on forced displacement, intellectual property, taxes and implementation of judicial sentences.
Her publications include “La paz ambiental: retos y propuestas para el posconflicto” (2016); “Radical Deprivation on Trial: The Impact of Judicial Activism on Socioeconomic Rights in the Global South” (2015); “Internal Wars, Taxation, and State Building” (2016); “Dependency Theory” (2016);“Impuestos, clientelismo y tecnocracia” (2012); and “Globalizing Intellectual Property Rights: The Politics of Law and Public Health” (2012).

Publisher (Retired), Cox Media Group

Amy Glennon is the former publisher of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and of Cox Media Group’s Vertical Businesses, a portfolio of digital content sites.

Glennon is on the Advisory Board of the James M. Cox Institute for Journalism Innovation, Management and Leadership at The University of Georgia; and is an Advisory Board member of the Salvation Army of Metro Atlanta.

COO, City of Atlanta

Lisa Y. Gordon is the Chief Operating Officer for the City of Atlanta. She joined the Dickens administration in February 2022. Gordon is the former President and Chief Executive Officer of Atlanta Habitat for Humanity where she led one of the highest producing and impactful affiliates in the country. As a result of her strategic action, she quadrupled the number of families served in four years with a goal to serve over 1,000 additional families in five years. She leveraged a $74 Million balance sheet comprised of a construction business, retail store and mortgage company for exponential impact.

Gordon is a strategic leader and consensus builder who enjoys working on complex business issues and creating opportunities for success. She is a financial expert and has a strong acumen for complex transactions, public-private partnerships, and extensive experience with audit committees and financial reviews.

She was the architect of the city of Atlanta’s first five-year financial plan - a strategic document used to build the city’s reserves and increase their bond rating to A+. She also led the organization out of a $80 million dollar deficit that received accolades from the Mayor and City Council.

Writer Speaker Diversity Advocate;
​Retired SVP Southern Company

Marsha Sampson Johnson is a retired senior executive from Fortune 200 energy giant, Southern Company. As Vice President Customer Service at Alabama Power Company, she became the first African-American female officer in Southern Company’s history. Other executive positions held with Southern include: Vice President Birmingham Division, Vice President Talent Management, and Senior Vice President Human Resources and Chief Diversity Officer. The United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta and Coleman Management Consultants are also notable past work experiences.
Marsha is known for keen insights and riveting presentations on leadership and navigating careers. She connects with broad audiences and uses her website www.marshasampsonjohnson.com as a path for mentoring. Her Lessons from the Corporate Jungle appeared bi-weekly in the Birmingham Times and other writings are published on CNN Opinion.com. She is featured in the Empowering Women Leaders series on YouTube.

Marsha is a graduate of Jacksonville University (Florida), Harvard University’s Advanced Management Program, and an alumna of five geographically based leadership programs (Jacksonville, Atlanta, Birmingham, Mobile, and Alabama). She served three terms as a Global Director of the International Women’s Forum, and is a former Director of IWF Georgia.

Editorial director, TEDWomen

Pat Mitchell is a lifelong advocate for women and girls. At every step of her career, Mitchell has broken new ground for women, leveraging the power of media as a journalist, an Emmy award-winning and Oscar-nominated producer to tell women’s stories and increase the representation of women onscreen and off. Transitioning to an executive role, she became the president of CNN Productions, and the first woman president and CEO of PBS and the Paley Center for Media. Today, her commitment to connect and strengthen a global community of women leaders continues as a conference curator, advisor and mentor.

In partnership with TED, Mitchell launched TEDWomen in 2010 and is its editorial director, curator and host. She is also a speaker and curator for the annual Women Working for the World forum in Bogota, Colombia, the Her Village conference in Beijing, and the Women of the World (WOW) festival in London. In 2017, she launched the Transformational Change Leadership Initiative with the Rockefeller Foundation focused on women leaders in government and civil society.


As the President and CEO of CARE USA, Michelle Nunn leads a global team of 7,000 people working in more than 100 countries to save lives, defeat poverty, and achieve social justice. During her tenure CARE has taken its fundraising and impact to new levels, including FY21 revenue that was the highest in the organization’s history and programs that reached more than 90 million people. CARE is one of the world’s largest humanitarian organizations with a holistic approach to work in crisis response, food and water, health, education and work, climate change and all centered in gender equality. CARE’s work over the decades has demonstrated that poverty cannot be overcome until all people have equal rights.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, CARE marked its 75th Anniversary and Nunn led a $100M Crisis Response Campaign that met its target early and was expanded to $150M given the urgency of needs around the world. Included in CARE’s response is a re-launch of the CARE Package, an iconic symbol of American generosity, and the organization’s first-ever programming in the United States. Nunn’s championing of the CARE Package is a rooted in her belief in human solidarity and that the most powerful tools are also often the simplest.

Nunn built a career of service as a social entrepreneur and nonprofit CEO. In 1989 she co-founded the volunteer-mobilization organization Hands On Atlanta, which under her leadership, grew from a group of friends working on six projects a month to one of the nation’s largest civic action and volunteer hubs. In 2007, she led the merger between Hands On and President George H.W. Bush’s Points of Light – the world’s largest volunteer-service organization. Nunn’s experience with Hands On and Points of Light further reinforced her belief that lasting impact comes from people advocating for change at the community level. Nunn served as Points of Light CEO from 2007 to 2013.

CEO, Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregivers (RCI)

Dr. Jennifer Olsen, an experienced epidemiologist, serves as Chief Executive Officer of the Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregivers (RCI), which promotes the health, strength, and resilience of caregivers throughout the United States. Prior to joining RCI, Olsen managed the Ending Pandemics in Our Lifetime initiative at the Skoll Global Threats Fund – whose mission was to drive large-scale change by investing in and connecting with those dedicated to solving five of the world’s greatest threats: climate change, pandemics, water security, nuclear proliferation, and conflict in the Middle East.  Olsen also served as Fusion Division Director in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness & Response at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, where she developed and implemented an analytics platform to increase awareness and information sharing during public health emergencies. She also previously held roles with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency, where she conducted modeling and simulation analysis with a focus on epidemiological scenarios. Olsen holds a B.A. in biomathematics from Rutgers University, an M.P.H. in Epidemiology from The George Washington University, and a Dr.P.H. from the University of North Carolina.

Martin Luther King Professor of Law, University of California Davis

Mary Ziegler is the Martin Luther King Professor of Law at the University of California Davis. One of the world’s leading historians of the abortion debate in the United States, she is the author of six books on social movement struggles around abortion, including the award-winning After Roe: The Lost History of the Abortion Debate (Harvard University Press, 2015) and Abortion and the Law in America: Roe v. Wade to the Present (Cambridge University Press, 2020).  Her latest book, Roe: The History of a National Obsession, was published by Yale University Press in January 2023. Ziegler frequently works with leading media outlets around the world, including the Atlantic, CNN, NPR, PBS Newshour, and the New York Times.

​IWD 2023 Agenda
IWD 2023 Sponsorship
IWD 2023 Speakers
IWD 2023 Mentorship
IWD 2023 Leadership
IWD 2023 Registration
IWD 2023 Resources/Media

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