India Today Conclave 2008/Leadership for the 21st Century
THE HONOURABLE WILLIAM J. CLINTON
42nd President of the United States
The first Democratic president to be awarded a second term in six decades, President Clinton served from 1993 to 2001. Under his leadership, the United States enjoyed the strongest economy in a generation and the longest and largest peacetime economic expansion in US history, moving the nation from record deficits to record surpluses and creating over 22 million jobs.
After leaving the White House, President Clinton established the William J. Clinton Foundation with the mission to strengthen the capacity of people in the United States and throughout the world to meet the challenges of global interdependence. The Clinton Foundation works to combat HIV/AIDS, catalyse sustainable economic growth globally and brings together a community of global leaders to devise and implement innovative solutions to some of the world's most pressing challenges. The foundation has also partnered with the American Heart Association to fight childhood obesity in America. Following the 2004 tsunami, President Clinton served as the United Nations Special Envoy for Tsunami Recovery for two years and raised funds to assist the survivors of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
Leader of the Opposition, Lok Sabha
Lal Krishna Advani, Leader of the Opposition and the NDA’s prime ministerial candidate for the next general elections, is a formidable force in Indian politics. He has served as deputy prime minister as well as home minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government from 1999 to 2004—and three terms as the president of BJP. In a political career spanning 60 years, he has made an indelible mark as a fine parliamentarian, unparalleled organiser, effective administrator and an ideological mobiliser. H is role in shaping the Indian Right and making BJP a party of governance is historical.
Chairman & Managing Director, Reliance Industries Ltd
Mukesh Ambani is the Chairman, Managing Director and largest shareholder of Reliance Industries, India's largest private sector enterprise and a Fortune 500 company. His personal stake in Reliance Industries is 48 per cent. Spearheading his group's ambitious expansion plans and new projects in 2007, and as a result of a strong share price rally in his group companies, Mukesh Ambani was widely reported to have become the richest man in the world with a net worth of $63.2 billion. Along the way, he set up India's largest petrochemical chain, is rolling out the country's largest retail chain and is now well ahead with a $10 billion project for oil and gas exploration.
SUNIL BHARTI MITTAL
Chairman & Group CEO, Bharti Enterprises
Sunil Bharti Mittal is Chairman and Managing Director of the Bharti group. The $4.5 billion company runs India's largest GSM-based mobile phone service. The group also has partnerships with Axa for insurance and with the Rothschild family for exporting fruits and vegetables. As of 6th October 2007, Mittal's stake in the Bharti group was worth $20.9 billion, making him the fourth richest Indian. He is currently President of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), the prestigious federation representing Indian industry. Sunil Mittal has received several awards, including the Padma Bhushan in 2007, and was named Asia Businessman of the Year by Fortune Magazine in 2006.
Executive Vice-President, Cisco Services, and Chief Globalisation Officer, Cisco
Wim Elfrink has dual roles at Cisco. As Chief Globalization Officer (CGO), he is leading the company's globalisation strategy, and as Executive Vice-President, Cisco Services, he is responsible for Cisco Services worldwide. Wim Elfrink has been with Cisco since 1997. The Cisco globalisation strategy represents a shift in business management from a focus on geography to a focus on skill sets and talents. As Chief Globalisation Officer, Wim Elfrink leads Cisco's efforts to use innovative business models to globalise many business functions. He is also Executive Vice-President of Cisco Services, an award-winning and growing part of the business with annual revenues of $5 billion.
Thought Leader, Physicist, Philosopher & Author
Danah Zohar is a management thought leader, physicist, philosopher and author. Her best-selling books include Spiritual Capital: Wealth We Can Live By and SQ – Spiritual Intelligence, The Ultimate Intelligence,which constitute ground-breaking work on spiritual intelligence and spiritual capital. ReWiring the Corporate Brain : Using the New Science to Rethink How We Structure and Lead; The Quantum Society : Mind, Physics & A New Social Vision; and The Quantum Self : Human Nature and Consciousness Defined by the New Physicsare her previous workswhich extend the language and principles of quantum physics into a new understanding of human consciousness, psychology and social organisation.
SADHGURU JAGGI VASUDEV
Yogi, Mystic & Spiritual Master
Sadhguru Jaggi Vasudev is a leading Yogi and spiritual teacher who preaches that yoga is not an esoteric discipline from the past but a contemporary science vitally relevant to our times. He has been a delegate to the United Nations Millennium Peace Summit, a Member of the World Council of Religious Leaders, the World Economic Forum at Davos and the Indian Economic Summit where he has spoken on subjects as diverse as human rights, business values, social, environmental and existential issues. Sadhguru Jaggi Sadhguru is the founder of Isha Foundation based on promoting the inner sciences of universal appeal and the well-being of the individual and the world.
Commercial Director, Virgin Galactic
Stephen Attenborough is the Commercial Director for Virgin Galactic, a company wholly owned by Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group which is on track to become the world's first passenger carrying commercial spaceline. Stephen Attenborough joined Virgin Galactic as the company's first full-time employee in 2004 to put in place the commercial foundations of the business. He now leads a team in London that covers sales, marketing, customer care, PR and communications. He also is responsible for workstreams that are developing and managing the astronaut experience as well as the liability, insurance and regulatory framework. He joined Virgin Galactic after a career in investment management in London.
Managing Director & CEO, Glenmark Pharmaceuticals
Glenn Saldanha, Managing Director & CEO of Glenmark Pharmaceuticals, holds a Bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy and an MBA. He joined Glenmark Pharmaceuticals in 1998 as Director and took over as Managing Director & CEO in 2001. Saldanha joined Eli Lily’s global marketing team soon after graduating from NYU. His last assignment was with Price Waterhouse Coopers USA, where as consultant he had the opportunity to work with top pharmaceutical companies. Saldanha has been instrumental in growing Glenmark from an India formulations business in 1999 to a global firm with interests spanning discovery research, India and international formulations, and API. The company is now among the few Indian firms with a successful drug discovery programme.
Former Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh
Digvijay Singh has the distinction of being Madhya Pradesh's longest serving chief minister, having held office for two consecutive terms between December 1993 and December 2003. Born into the royal family of Raghogarh, he joined politics at the age of 24 and in 1984 became one of the youngest presidents of the state Congress Committee. During his term in office as CM, Singh laid emphasis on lifting Madhya Pradesh out of the BIMARU trap. After the Congress lost power to the BJP in the 2003 assembly elections, he was shifted to New Delhi as party general secretary and was instrumental in forging the party's alliances in crucial states like Maharashtra, Assam and Bihar.
Chief Minister of Gujarat
Narendra Modi has been Chief Minister of Gujarat since October 7, 2001, having just won his third successive victory in the assembly elections. He joined the RSS in the late 1960s and went on to become a full-time pracharak. Narendra Modi joined the BJP in 1986 and has been party General Secretary. Since becoming chief minister of Gujarat, he has led the state on a path of high growth and rapid development. After his stunning victory in the assembly elections last December, he has emerged as a frontline leader of the BJP and is being talked about as a future prime ministerial candidate.
Former Chief Minister of Jammu & Kashmir
A former chief minister of Jammu & Kashmir, Farooq Abdullah has dominated the politics of the Valley for almost three decades. Currently a member of the Rajya Sabha, he carries forward the tradition of his great father Sheikh Abdullah. Without compromising on national interest, he stands for more political autonomy to the state that launched his political career.
DR J. CRAIG VENTER
Pioneering Genomic Researcher
Dr Craig Venter is regarded as one of leading scientists of the 21st century for his invaluable contributions in genomic research. He is founder and president of the Venter Institute and the J. Craig Venter Science Foundation, and Founder and Chairman of The Institute for Genomic Research, non-profit, basic research support organisations dedicated to human genomic research as well as seeking alternative energy solutions through microbial sources. Dr Venter and his team at the Venter Institute continue to blaze new trails in genomics research and have recently published several important papers outlining scientific advances with significant implications for the human race.
Journalist, Author and Politician
Arun Shourie is a well-known journalist, author and politician. He received his doctorate in economics from Syracuse University in New York and served as an economist with the World Bank and also as a consultant to India's Planning Commission before making his foray into journalistm by writing several critical articles on economic policies. Arun Shourie quickly earned a reputation as a crusading journalist and was appointed editor of The Indian Express newspaper. He has authored a number of books and has been active in politics. A die-hard reformist, Arun Shourie joined the BJP in 1998 and served as minister for disinvestment in the NDA government.
Union Cabinet Minister of Finance
Finance Minister P. Chidambaram was first elected to the Lok Sabha in 1984 and is a six-time Parliamentarian from Tamil Nadu. A lawyer by profession, the Harvard graduate has been Minister for Internal Security, Union Commerce Minister and Union Finance Minister in the past. In his earlier stint as Finance Minister in 1997, P. Chidambaram dismantled the high tax regime that India was famous for with historic cuts in personal and corporate taxes. He has pushed for India's integration with the global economy and has overseen an over 8 per cent GDP growth in successive years.
Adam Craig Gilchrist, 37, is cricket’s greatest-ever wicket-keeper batsman, that rare athlete who changed his sport through presence and skill. They call him the greatest all-rounder the game has seen since Sir Garfield Sobers, his explosive batting combined with pedigree keeping skills raising the bar for glovemen all around the world. A modern cricketer who was proud to follow an old world sporting code, Gilchrist is a global role model as well as the most successful Test keeper in history, a key factor in Australia’s dominance over a decade and a part of three World Cup-winning squads.
Politician & World Cup winning former Pakistan Cricket Captain
Imran Khan Niazi is a former Pakistan cricket captain and politician. He was one of the finest all-rounders in the modern history of the game. An Oxford graduate, Khan achieved the all-rounder's triple (securing 3,000 runs and 300 wickets) in 75 Tests, the second fastest record behind Ian Botham. His last ODI was the historic 1992 World Cup victory at Melbourne. After retiring in 1992, Khan founded the Shaukat Khanum Memorial Trust, a charity organisation which established Pakistan's first and only cancer hospital, before taking to active politics and founding the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf, of which he is chairman as well as sole member.
NAVJOT SINGH SIDHU
Former Indian Cricketer and Member of Parliament
Navjot Singh Sidhu, a former Indian cricketer, is now as big a star in television commentary and comedy and talk shows. His cricket career as India's opening batsman extended from 1983 to 1999. Since then Sidhu has gained fame as well as fortune by appearing as an expert on cricket shows where his sharp wit and humorous quotes are now immortalised as Sidhuisms and led to his appearance on prime time comedy shows. He is also a politician, having joined the BJP after his retirement from the game. Sidhu was elected to the Lok Sabha from Amritsar in 2004.
THE HONOURABLE AL GORE
Former Vice-President of USA, Nobel Peace Laureate, Author and Award-winning Filmmake
Former US Vice-President Al Gore is chairman of Current TV, an Emmy award winning, independently owned cable and satellite television non-fiction network for young people based on viewer-created content and citizen journalism. He also serves as chairman of Generation Investment Management, a firm that is focused on a new approach to sustainable investing.
Al Gore is a member of the board of directors of Apple, a senior adviser to Google, and a partner with the venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. He is a Visiting Professor at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, and chairs the Alliance for Climate Protection, a non-profit organisation designed to help solve the climate crisis.
Al Gore was elected to the US House of Representatives in 1976, 1978, 1980 and 1982 and the US Senate in 1984 and 1990. He was inaugurated as the 45th Vice-President of the United States on January 20, 1993, and served eight years. During the administration, Al Gore was a central member of President Clinton's economic team. He served as President of the Senate, a Cabinet member, a member of the National Security Council, and as the leader of a wide range of administration initiatives.
He is the author of the bestsellers Earth in the Balance and An Inconvenient Truth and is the subject of an Oscar-winning documentary. Al Gore is the co-winner, with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for "informing the world of the dangers posed by climate change." He and his wife, Tipper, live in Nashville, Tennessee. They have four children and three grandchildren.
Actor, Director and Producer
Aamir Khan is a highly acclaimed and award-winning film actor, producer and director. His career as an actor has been studded with memorable and award-winning performances, culminating in his role in the Academy Award nominated Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India for which he received his second Filmfare Best Actor award. After a break from acting, Aamir Khan made his comeback with Ketan Mehta's The Rising. Having established himself as one of the most successful leading actors of Hindi cinema, his recent directorial debut Taare Zameen Par has been hailed as a critical and box office success, adding yet another dimension to the multi-faceted star.
Chairman & CEO, Hyde Park Entertainment, and Hollywood Producer
Ashok Amritraj is Chairman and CEO of Hyde Park Entertainment and is one of the most successful Hollywood producers, having produced over 95 films in the last 26 years with grosses in excess of $1 billion. His films include box office hits with majors stars such as BRINGING DOWN THE HOUSE (Steve Martin), PREMONITION (Sandra Bullock), WALKING TALL (The Rock), RAISING HELEN (Kate Hudson), BANDITS (Bruce Willis), and ORIGINAL SIN (Angelina Jolie). His current projects include MANDRAKE THE MAGICIAN with Warner Brothers, STREET FIGHTER with 20th Century Fox and THE OTHER END OF THE LINE with MGM.
Member of Parliament
Kanimozhi Karunanidhi is a Tamil poet, journalist and politician. She is the daughter of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi. Kanimozhi Karunanidhi started her career with The Hindu newspaper before editing a Tamil weekly magazine. She has conducted programmes in Sun TV and Vijay TV and is a features editor for a Singapore-based Tamil newspaper. She writes Tamil poetry and has translated the works of other Tamil poets into English. Kanimozhi Karunanidhi became a Rajya Sabha member in 2007. She is a strong supporter of Pan Tamil issues, in particular Sri Lankan Tamils, and has organised Tamil folk art festivals called Chennai Sangamam.
Founder & CEO, SKS Microfinance Pvt Ltd
Vikram Akula is the CEO and Founder of SKS Microfinance in 1998, an organisation that offers micro-loans and insurance to women in impoverished areas of India. Today, SKS is one of the fastest growing microfinance institutions in the world, having provided over $550 million in loans to nearly 1,72 million poor women. SKS leads the industry in the use of innovative technologies and has pioneered the use of technology at the village level. Vikram Akula worked as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company, and as a Fulbright Scholar in India coordinated an action-research project on providing micro-credit for food security.
Member of Parliament
Sachin Pilot is a Congress MP representing Dausa constituency of Rajasthan. At 26 years, he became the youngest MP in the country. He is the son of the late Congress leader Rajesh Pilot. Sachin Pilot was educated at Air Force Bal Bharti School in New Delhi and graduated from St Stephens College, Delhi University. While in college, he was the captain of the college shooting team. He received his MBA from Wharton Business School. Sachin Pilot is a prominent leader of the Gujjar community in Rajasthan. He is a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs and a member of the Consultative Committee in the Ministry of Civil Aviation.
Former Somerset Captain and world's leading Cricket Writer and Commentator
Peter Michael Roebuck is one of the world's most influential and respected cricket writers and commentators. His identity as a media man of great authority is so well-established that it is easy to overlook the fact that before he stepped into the press box, Roebuck spent 17 years playing first-class cricket, captaining Somerset and scoring more than 17,000 runs. He divides his time between Australia and South Africa, writing for the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age in Melbourne. He is the author of several books, including his latest In It To Win It, the story of Australian cricket's phenomenal prowess in the game.
She's played an unwed mother, a divorcee with a child, a war reporter and even a radio jockey based in Australia. A former model, Preity Zinta has earned a substantial reputation for playing a woman of substance. A student of criminal psychology, the Army brat has never been one to sit on the sidelines of life. Whether it is standing up to the Mumbai underworld or asking for a cleaner, greener Mumbai, Preity Zinta has always believed that stardom is more than just lending one's name to pretty frames and pricey products. Of late, she has broadened her cinematic horizons, acting in off-mainstream movies with directors like Jahnu Barua and Deepa Mehta. Clearly, as an actor and as a citizen, Preity Zinta is here to stay.
Chairman, Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front
Yasin Malik is chairman of the Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF). His faction is a secular separatist movement which advocates a united Kashmir independent from both India and Pakistan. Malik came into prominence as a militant in JKLF and underwent training in Pakistan-based camps. He later turned to a peaceful mode of protest. The JKLF was originally a militant organisation, but since 1995 it has renounced all violence and called for strictly peaceful methods to achieve its aims. Yasin Malik is also a strong advocate for the right of return of Hindu Kashmiri Pandits who have been forced to leave the state.