Strategic Partnership Agreement

Board of Directors

Stichting BRAC International is governed by board members. The board members are elected from among distinguished individuals with sound reputations in social development, business or the professions who have demonstrated their personal commitment to pro poor causes. These individuals are elected to the board members to bring their diverse skills, knowledge and experiences to the governance of Stichting BRAC International. At present, there are 10 members on the board members. The board members usually meets four times a year, in accordance with the rules of Stichting BRAC International.

The members of the board are appointed as an honorary basis. As per the constitutions thet dod not draw any remuneration.

Members of Stichting BRAC International Board


Sir Fazle Hasan Abed
Chairperson

Sir Fazle was born in 1936 in Bangladesh. He was educated both at Dhaka and Glasgow Universities. He was a professional accountant in his thirties, working as a senior corporate executive at Shell Oil, when the 1971 Liberation War had a profound effect on him, dramatically changing the direction of his life. He left his job, moved to London and devoted himself to Bangladesh’s War of Independence. There, he helped initiate a campaign called “Help Bangladesh” to organise funds in raising awareness about the war.

When the war was over, he returned to the newly independent Bangladesh, finding the economy in ruins. Millions of refugees, who had sought shelter in India during the war, started returning to the country and their relief and rehabilitation called for urgent efforts. It was then that he established BRAC to rehabilitate the returning refugees in a remote area in north-eastern Bangladesh. He directed his policy towards helping the poor develop their capacity to better manage their lives. Thus, BRAC’s primary objectives emerged as alleviation of poverty and empowerment of the poor. Under his leadership, in the span of only four decades, BRAC grew to become the largest development organisation in the world in terms of the scale and diversity of its interventions.

Sir Fazle has received numerous national and international awards for his achievements in leading BRAC, including the WISE Prize (2011), Conrad Hilton Foundation Humanitarian Award (2009), the David Rockefeller Bridging Leadership Award (2008), the Inaugural Clinton Global Citizen Award (2007), the Henry R. Kravis Prize in Leadership (2007), the Palli Karma Sahayak Foundation (PKSF) Award for Lifetime Achievement in Social Development and Poverty Alleviation (2007), Gates Award for Global Health (2004), UNDP Mahbub ul Haq Award for Outstanding Contribution in Human Development (2004), Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneurship Award (2002), Olof Palme Award (2001), UNICEF’s Maurice Pate Award (1992) and the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership (1980).

He is also recognised by Ashoka as one of the “global greats” and is a founding member of its prestigious Global Academy for Social Entrepreneurship. In 2010, he was appointed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to the Eminent Persons Group for the Least Developed Countries. Sir Fazle has received several honorary degrees including Doctor of Humane Letters from Yale University in 2007, Doctor of Laws from Columbia University in 2008, Doctor of Letters from the University of Oxford and Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters, Rikkyo University, Japan in 2009, the Doctorate of Laws from the University of Bath in 2010, and Doctor of Laws Honoris Causa, The University of Manchester, UK in 2012. In February 2010, he was appointed Knight Commander of the Most Distinguished Order of St. Michael and St. George (KCMG) by the British crown in recognition of his services to reducing poverty in Bangladesh and internationally.


Mahabub Hossain
Secretary

Dr Hossainis an internationally renowned development economist. Prior to joining BRAC, Dr Hossain had been the head of the Social Sciences Division and programme leader of the Rainfed Ecosystems Programme of International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), Philippines. Prior to joining IRRI, he worked as the director general of Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS) from 1989 to 1992. Dr Hossainis known for his substantial contributions to research on rural development and agriculture policy in South and Southeast Asia.

He is the founding member of the North South University Foundation, and serves as a member of the BRAC University Board. Dr Hossain is a member of Technical Review committee of the Global Fund for Agricultural and Food Security, Project Advisory Council of the HarvestPlus Challenge Programme of CGIAR, and Rice Advisory Board for Syngenta Asia Pacific Pte.Ltd. He is also the member of the Global Knowledge Advisory Commission of the World Bank.

Dr Hossain obtained his Masters in Economics in 1969 from Dhaka University and PhD in Economics in 1977 from the University of Cambridge, UK. Throughout his distinguished career, he has authored/co-authored 11 books and research monographs and contributed more than 150 papers in refereed journals and edited books. He was awarded the first Gold Medal from the Bangladesh Agricultural Economist Association (in 1985) in recognition of outstanding contribution to understanding the operation of rural economy in Bangladesh. He is president elect of the Asian Society of Agricultural Economics for 2011-2015.


Muhammad A (Rumee) Ali
Treasurer

Mr Ali served at different levels in local and international banking sector. Prior to joining BRAC, he served as the deputy governor of Bangladesh Bank. With his appointment as country head and general manager of Grindlays Bangladesh in March 1997, Mr Ali became the first Bangladeshi to head a major international bank in Bangladesh. In July 2000, following the takeover of ANZ Grindlays by Standard Chartered Bank, Mr Ali was appointed the CEO of the Standard Chartered Group in Bangladesh, heading both Standard Chartered Bank and Standard Chartered Grindlays Bank. His banking experience includes stints in India, United Kingdom and Australia. Mr Ali was elected a Fellow of the Bangladesh Institute of Bankers in 2001.

He is the chairman of BRAC Bank Ltd, BRAC EPL Investments Ltd, BRAC EPL Stock Brokerage Ltd, bkash Ltd, BRAC SajaanExchange Ltd, and also the director of several organisations, including BRACNet and Delta BRAC Housing Finance Corporation Ltd (DBH). Mr Ali is a member of the Global Steering Committee of the Performance Based Grants Initiatives of the International Finance Corporation, and the Technical Advisory Committee of Bangladesh Investment Climate Fund. He also served as a member of the governing body of PKSF. At present, he is the vice chairman of Bangladesh Association of Banks.

He received a number of awards including C R Das and AtishDipanker Gold Medal for Banking in 1995 and 1999 and ‘CEO of the Year’ awarded by Junior Chamber International, Bangladesh and Bangladesh Management Institute in 2000 and 2001 respectively.

Mr Ali received his BA (Honours) and MA in Economics from University of Dhaka.


Susan Davis
Director

Ms Davis is a thought leader in international development and civil society innovation. She is a founder and current president and CEO of BRAC USA. In addition, she is a founding board member and immediate past chair of the Grameen Foundation. She serves on Ashoka’s international board committee that selects Ashoka Fellows, and is also a senior advisor to New York University’s Reynolds Programme on Social Entrepreneurship.

Previously, she led Ashoka’s Global Academy for Social Entrepreneurship, co-founded the University Network for Social Entrepreneurship and oversaw Ashoka’s expansion to the Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia. In addition, she served as a senior advisor to the Director General of the International Labor Organisation. Before that, she led the global advocacy group, Women’s Environment and Development Organisation.

She has extensive micro-credit experience from her years with the Ford Foundation in Bangladesh, and from her work with Women’s World Banking. She also served as a funder and volunteer representative to start Ashoka Bangladesh. Earlier, she was the assistant director of the export trading company of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Ms Davis serves on numerous other boards including Project Enterprise, Sirleaf Market Women’s Fund, and African Women’s Development Fund USA. She is on Mary Robinson’s advisory council of Realising Rights: the Ethical Globalisation Initiative, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She was educated at Georgetown, Harvard and Oxford universities.


Sylvia Borren
Director

Ms Borrenis presently co-chair of the Global Call for Action against Poverty (GCAP) and its Dutch Chapter EEN. She is also co-chair of the Worldconnectors, a diverse Dutch network of concerned citizens. She is a member of the advisory council on International Affairs of the Dutch Government (vice-chair of the COS, the Commission on Development Cooperation). She also serves as the independent chairperson of a programme with the Global Trade Union ‘Education International’ and Oxfam Novib to accelerate Quality Teacher Training for informal and formal teachers in developing countries, including creating a competency profile and life-skill curriculum. She is part of the International Women’s Commission for a just and sustainable peace in Palestine and Israel.

In 1994, Ms Borren joined Novib first as project director, and from 1999 to January 2008 she served as the executive director of Oxfam Novib, a part of Oxfam International. She chaired the New Dialogue (a broad civil society platform), and co-founded the NSF (Dutch Social Forum). She was member of the board of governors of a large mental health institute (Altrecht) for nearly 10 years. In 2006, she wrote the ‘Poverty Requiem’ with composer/conductor Peter Maissan, which has since been performed more than 60 times in 25 countries.

She holds a BA degree in Education and Religious Studies and an MA degree in Education.


Debapriya Bhattacharya
Director

Dr Bhattacharya is a macro-economist and public policy analyst, and a Distinguished Fellow at the Centre for Policy Dialogue (CPD). He was also the first executive director of CPD from 1999 to 2007. He served as the special advisor on LDCs to the Secretary General, UNCTAD (2009-2010). Dr Bhattacharya was the ambassador and permanent representative of Bangladesh to the WTO, UN office, and other international organisations in Geneva (2007-2009), and the president of UNCTAD’s governing board as well as the coordinator of LDC Group in the UN System in Geneva. Dr Bhattacharya was also the general secretary of Bangladesh Economic Association for three consecutive terms.

He was a member of the macro-economic Policy Advisory Committee, Ministry of Finance; Banking Sector Reform Committee; Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources and National Committee for Vision 2020, Prime Minister’s Office, and many other distinguished offices. Dr Bhattacharya prepared the first ever country-level Trade-Related Technical Assistance Need Assessment for Bangladesh under the multi-agency Integrated Framework. For UNDP, he prepared the first ever disaggregated Human Development Index for Bangladesh and Nepal. Since 2001, he has regularly contributed to the preparation of the Global Competitiveness Report (GCR) of the World Economic Forum (WEF).

He holds a PhD (Economics) from the Plekhanov Institute of National Economy, Moscow and did his post-doctoral research at Queen Elizabeth House, Oxford. Dr Bhattacharya held a number of visiting positions including in UN-INTECH (Maastricht), University of Manchester and IDE (Tokyo). He is a regional editor of the Oxford Development Studies, member of the editorial board, South Asian Studies, Colombo, and Trade Insights, Kathmandu.


Shabana Azmi
Director

Ms Azmiis an internationally acclaimed actress who was a member of the Indian Parliament and a UN Goodwill Ambassador. She is also a vocal and committed social activist, undertaking campaigns and making public statements over various issues, particularly social justice, rights of women, plight of slum dwellers etc. She is a leading advocate of AIDS awareness in India. Ms Azmi is a visiting professor at Ann Arbor, Michigan and has addressed several universities in India and abroad, including Harvard, Columbia, Berkeley, MIT, University of Chicago and the University of London, on the need to relate communal harmony to issues of social justice.

For her sincerity and commitment in social activism, Ms Azmiwon the Rajiv Gandhi Award, the YashBhartiya Award from the government of the state of Uttar Pradesh, India, and the Padma Shri in 1988 from the Government of India. She was chosen by Time Magazine as one of 25 Asian heroes and was the only woman amongst the four Indians who have made a difference. She is the also the winner of an unprecedented five National Awards for Best Actress in India. Ms Azmi was also a former member of the RajyaSabha.

She completed her degree in Psychology at St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai, and she took a Diploma in Acting at the Film and Television Institute in Pune, India in 1972.


Shafiq ul Hassan (Quais)
Director

Mr Hassan is a businessman who has been involved in marketing of garments produced in Bangladesh to Europe since 1986. He is the managing director of Echo Sourcing Ltd UK, and Echotex Ltd Bangladesh. Echo Sourcing was made Supplier of the Year in 2003 by New Look Retailers Ltd UK and Echotex received both Bangladesh National Environmental Award and MCCI Environmental Award in 2010.

He received his MSc in Process Analysis & Development from Aston University, Birmingham.


Parveen Mahmud FCA
Director

Ms Mahmud FCA, is the managing director of Grameen Telecom Trust, which facilitates Social Business activities for employment generation in addressing social issues and poverty alleviation. She is a chartered accountant and a fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Bangladesh (ICAB). In her varied professional career, Ms Mahmud worked substantial time with national and international development agencies and has practiced chartered accountancy.

Ms Mahmud started her career with BRAC, and was the deputy managing director of Palli Karma-Sahayak Foundation (PKSF), an apex funding institution of microfinance activities for poverty alleviation. She was a partner at ACNABIN, Chartered Accountants. She was the first female president of ICAB in 2011. She is also the first female board member of the South Asian Federation of Accountants (SAFA), an apex accounting professional body of the SAARC. Ms Mahmud was a working group member of the Consultative Group on Social Indicators, UNCTAD/ISAR. She serves in various boards, and was the chairperson of Acid Survivors Foundation.


Irene Z Khan
Director

Ms Khan, an expert on international law and a human rights advocate, is director-general of the International Development Law Organisation (IDLO), an inter-governmental organisation which enables governments and empowers people to reform laws and institutions to promote peace, justice and sustainable development.

Between 2001 – 2009, Ms Khan was the secretary general of Amnesty International. Prior to joining Amnesty International, she worked for the UN High Commissioner for Refugees at its Geneva headquarters and various field operations for 21 years.

She is the chancellor of Salford University (UK), and sits on the board of several international organisations, including Save the Children International, Mary Robinson Foundation for Climate Justice and the Centre for Economic and Social Rights. Ms Khan has been the recipient of several awards and honours, including the Sydney Peace Prize in 2006 for her work on women’s human rights, and the UK Asian Award for Public Servant of the Year in 2011. She studied law at the University of Manchester and Harvard Law School. Her book, The Unheard Truth: Poverty and Human Rights has been translated into seven languages.

Members of BRAC International Holdings B.V. Board


Sir Fazle Hasan Abed
Director

Sir Fazle was born in 1936 in Bangladesh. He was educated both at Dhaka and Glasgow Universities. He was a professional accountant in his thirties, working as a senior corporate executive at Shell Oil, when the 1971 Liberation War had a profound effect on him, dramatically changing the direction of his life. He left his job, moved to London and devoted himself to Bangladesh’s War of Independence. There, he helped initiate a campaign called “Help Bangladesh” to organise funds in raising awareness about the war.

When the war was over, he returned to the newly independent Bangladesh, finding the economy in ruins. Millions of refugees, who had sought shelter in India during the war, started returning to the country and their relief and rehabilitation called for urgent efforts. It was then that he established BRAC to rehabilitate the returning refugees in a remote area in north-eastern Bangladesh. He directed his policy towards helping the poor develop their capacity to better manage their lives. Thus, BRAC’s primary objectives emerged as alleviation of poverty and empowerment of the poor. Under his leadership, in the span of only four decades, BRAC grew to become the largest development organisation in the world in terms of the scale and diversity of its interventions.

Sir Fazle has received numerous national and international awards for his achievements in leading BRAC, including the WISE Prize (2011), Conrad Hilton Foundation Humanitarian Award (2009), the David Rockefeller Bridging Leadership Award (2008), the Inaugural Clinton Global Citizen Award (2007), the Henry R. Kravis Prize in Leadership (2007), the Palli Karma Sahayak Foundation (PKSF) Award for Lifetime Achievement in Social Development and Poverty Alleviation (2007), Gates Award for Global Health (2004), UNDP Mahbub ul Haq Award for Outstanding Contribution in Human Development (2004), Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneurship Award (2002), Olof Palme Award (2001), UNICEF’s Maurice Pate Award (1992) and the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership (1980).

He is also recognised by Ashoka as one of the “global greats” and is a founding member of its prestigious Global Academy for Social Entrepreneurship. In 2010, he was appointed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon to the Eminent Persons Group for the Least Developed Countries. Sir Fazle has received several honorary degrees including Doctor of Humane Letters from Yale University in 2007, Doctor of Laws from Columbia University in 2008, Doctor of Letters from the University of Oxford and Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters, Rikkyo University, Japan in 2009, the Doctorate of Laws from the University of Bath in 2010, and Doctor of Laws Honoris Causa, The University of Manchester, UK in 2012. In February 2010, he was appointed Knight Commander of the Most Distinguished Order of St. Michael and St. George (KCMG) by the British crown in recognition of his services to reducing poverty in Bangladesh and internationally.


Mahabub Hossain
Director

Dr Hossainis an internationally renowned development economist. Prior to joining BRAC, Dr Hossain had been the head of the Social Sciences Division and programme leader of the Rainfed Ecosystems Programme of International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), Philippines. Prior to joining IRRI, he worked as the director general of Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies (BIDS) from 1989 to 1992. Dr Hossainis known for his substantial contributions to research on rural development and agriculture policy in South and Southeast Asia.

He is the founding member of the North South University Foundation, and serves as a member of the BRAC University Board. Dr Hossain is a member of Technical Review committee of the Global Fund for Agricultural and Food Security, Project Advisory Council of the HarvestPlus Challenge Programme of CGIAR, and Rice Advisory Board for Syngenta Asia Pacific Pte.Ltd. He is also the member of the Global Knowledge Advisory Commission of the World Bank.

Dr Hossain obtained his Masters in Economics in 1969 from Dhaka University and PhD in Economics in 1977 from the University of Cambridge, UK. Throughout his distinguished career, he has authored/co-authored 11 books and research monographs and contributed more than 150 papers in refereed journals and edited books. He was awarded the first Gold Medal from the Bangladesh Agricultural Economist Association (in 1985) in recognition of outstanding contribution to understanding the operation of rural economy in Bangladesh. He is president elect of the Asian Society of Agricultural Economics for 2011-2015.


Muhammad A (Rumee) Ali
Director

Mr Ali served at different levels in local and international banking sector. Prior to joining BRAC, he served as the deputy governor of Bangladesh Bank. With his appointment as country head and general manager of Grindlays Bangladesh in March 1997, Mr Ali became the first Bangladeshi to head a major international bank in Bangladesh. In July 2000, following the takeover of ANZ Grindlays by Standard Chartered Bank, Mr Ali was appointed the CEO of the Standard Chartered Group in Bangladesh, heading both Standard Chartered Bank and Standard Chartered Grindlays Bank. His banking experience includes stints in India, United Kingdom and Australia. Mr Ali was elected a Fellow of the Bangladesh Institute of Bankers in 2001.

He is the chairman of BRAC Bank Ltd, BRAC EPL Investments Ltd, BRAC EPL Stock Brokerage Ltd, bkash Ltd, BRAC SajaanExchange Ltd, and also the director of several organisations, including BRACNet and Delta BRAC Housing Finance Corporation Ltd (DBH). Mr Ali is a member of the Global Steering Committee of the Performance Based Grants Initiatives of the International Finance Corporation, and the Technical Advisory Committee of Bangladesh Investment Climate Fund. He also served as a member of the governing body of PKSF. At present, he is the vice chairman of Bangladesh Association of Banks.

He received a number of awards including C R Das and AtishDipanker Gold Medal for Banking in 1995 and 1999 and ‘CEO of the Year’ awarded by Junior Chamber International, Bangladesh and Bangladesh Management Institute in 2000 and 2001 respectively.

Mr Ali received his BA (Honours) and MA in Economics from University of Dhaka.


Susan Davis
Director

Ms Davis is a thought leader in international development and civil society innovation. She is a founder and current president and CEO of BRAC USA. In addition, she is a founding board member and immediate past chair of the Grameen Foundation. She serves on Ashoka’s international board committee that selects Ashoka Fellows, and is also a senior advisor to New York University’s Reynolds Programme on Social Entrepreneurship.

Previously, she led Ashoka’s Global Academy for Social Entrepreneurship, co-founded the University Network for Social Entrepreneurship and oversaw Ashoka’s expansion to the Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia. In addition, she served as a senior advisor to the Director General of the International Labor Organisation. Before that, she led the global advocacy group, Women’s Environment and Development Organisation.

She has extensive micro-credit experience from her years with the Ford Foundation in Bangladesh, and from her work with Women’s World Banking. She also served as a funder and volunteer representative to start Ashoka Bangladesh. Earlier, she was the assistant director of the export trading company of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Ms Davis serves on numerous other boards including Project Enterprise, Sirleaf Market Women’s Fund, and African Women’s Development Fund USA. She is on Mary Robinson’s advisory council of Realising Rights: the Ethical Globalisation Initiative, and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She was educated at Georgetown, Harvard and Oxford universities.


Sylvia Borren
Director

Ms Borrenis presently co-chair of the Global Call for Action against Poverty (GCAP) and its Dutch Chapter EEN. She is also co-chair of the Worldconnectors, a diverse Dutch network of concerned citizens. She is a member of the advisory council on International Affairs of the Dutch Government (vice-chair of the COS, the Commission on Development Cooperation). She also serves as the independent chairperson of a programme with the Global Trade Union ‘Education International’ and Oxfam Novib to accelerate Quality Teacher Training for informal and formal teachers in developing countries, including creating a competency profile and life-skill curriculum. She is part of the International Women’s Commission for a just and sustainable peace in Palestine and Israel.

In 1994, Ms Borren joined Novib first as project director, and from 1999 to January 2008 she served as the executive director of Oxfam Novib, a part of Oxfam International. She chaired the New Dialogue (a broad civil society platform), and co-founded the NSF (Dutch Social Forum). She was member of the board of governors of a large mental health institute (Altrecht) for nearly 10 years. In 2006, she wrote the ‘Poverty Requiem’ with composer/conductor Peter Maissan, which has since been performed more than 60 times in 25 countries.

She holds a BA degree in Education and Religious Studies and an MA degree in Education.

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