NRGI’s board of directors consists of:
- Ernesto Zedillo (chair)
- Smita Singh (vice chair)
- Ernest Aryeetey
- Paul Collier
- Alan Detheridge
- Bennett Freeman
- Sean Hinton
- Mo Ibrahim
- Yuli Ismartono
- Warren Krafchik
- Elena Panfilova
Ernesto Zedillo is the Frederick Iseman ’74 director of the Yale Center for the Study of Globalization and a professor of international economics and politics, as well as international and area studies, at Yale University. He is an adjunct professor of forestry and environmental studies and teaches two seminars, “Debating Globalization” and “The Economic Evolution and Challenges of the Latin American and Caribbean Countries.”
Prior to Yale, Zedillo was a professor at the Natìonal Polytechnic Institute and El Colegio de Mexico. From 1978 to 1987, he worked for the Central Bank of Mexico. From 1987 to 1988, he served the national government of Mexico as undersecretary of budget; from 1988 to 1992, as secretary of economic programming and the budget; and from 1992 to 1994, as secretary of education. In 1994 Zedillo ran for the presidency and won. He served his country as president of Mexico until 2000.
He currently serves as chairman of the boards of the Natural Resource Governance Institute and the 21st Century Advisory Council of the Berggruen Institute on Governance, as well as co-chair of the Inter-American Dialogue. He also serves on the Global Commission on Drug Policy, chaired by Fernando Henrique Cardoso, and is a member of The Elders, an independent group of global leaders using their collective experience and influence for peace, justice and human rights worldwide.
From 2010 to 2012, Zedillo served as vice chair of the Global Commission on Elections, Democracy and Security, chaired by Kofi Annan; from 2010 to 2013, as chairman of the oversight board of the Natural Resource Charter; from 2005 to 2011, as chair of the Global Development Network; from 2010 to 2013, as co-chair of the Regional Migration Study Group; and from 2008 to 2010, as chair of the High Level Commission on Modernization of World Bank Group Governance.
He previously served on the International Commission on Nuclear Non-proliferation and Disarmament; was appointed by Mohamed El Baradei to serve as chair of the Commission of Eminent Persons to recommend the future course of the International Atomic Energy Agency; co-chaired the Partnership of the Americas Commission with Thomas Pickering; and co-chaired the Commission on Drugs and Democracy with former Presidents Cardoso of Brazil and Gaviria of Colombia.
He is a member of the G30 and the board of directors of the Peterson Institute for International Economics. He is a distinguished practitioner of the Blavatnik School of Government at the University of Oxford, and in 2011 he was elected an international member of the American Philosophical Society. He holds honorary degrees from Yale and Harvard universities; the University of Ghana; the Hebrew University of Jerusalem; the University of Massachusetts, Amherst; and the University of Miami.
He has edited several volumes, including Africa at a Fork in the Road: Taking Off or Disappointment Once Again? (YCSG, 2015); Rethinking the War on Drugs through the US-Mexico Prism (YCSG, 2012); Global Warming: Looking Beyond Kyoto (Brookings/YCSG, 2008) and The Future of Globalization: Explorations in Light of Recent Turbulence (Routledge, 2008).
He earned his bachelor’s degree from the School of Economics of the Natìonal Polytechnic Institute in Mexico and his MA and PhD from Yale University.
Smita Singh was the founding director of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation’s Global Development Program. Under her leadership, the program carried out extensive international grant-making and started several new initiatives, including the Think Tank Initiative, the Transparency and Accountability Initiative, and the Partnership for Quality Education in Developing Countries.
At the foundation, Singh also helped create the International Initiative in Impact Evaluation, a new international agency devoted to improving the measurement of results in development interventions. She also initiated the foundation’s efforts to reform development assistance policy and practices, which included seeding the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network and the International Aid Transparency Initiative.
Singh has lived and worked in several countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. A scholar at the Harvard Academy of International and Area Studies, her research interests focus on the comparative political economy of developing countries. She has also worked for the Commission on National and Community Service (now the Corporation for National Service), developing higher education initiatives and funding strategies for dispersing grants to community service and service-learning projects at over 200 colleges and universities. Before joining the commission, she worked at ABC News “Nightline” and, prior to that, with community-based women's organizations in India.
Beyond NRGI, Singh sits on the governing boards of Oxfam America, Twaweza, the International Budget Partnership, and the Center for Global Development. She is a member of the Aspen Strategy Group and serves on the U.S. President’s Global Development Council.
Ernest Aryeetey, vice chancellor of the University of Ghana, brings deep technical expertise to NRGI. He formerly ran the Institute of Statistical and Economic Research, and is a nonresident senior fellow with the Africa Growth Initiative in the Global Economy and Development program of the Brookings Institution, where he served as director from 2009-2010. He is a well-known and respected scholar who has expressed his deep concern about Ghana’s development trajectory and is well placed to impact its course.
Sir Paul Collier is professor of economics and public policy at the University of Oxford’s Blavatnik School of Government and a professorial fellow of St. Antony’s College. Until September 2012, he was a professor at Oxford’s Department of Economics and director of its Centre for the Study of African Economies. He is currently a professeur invité at Sciences Po.
From 1998 to 2003, Collier took a public service leave to direct the Research Development Department of the World Bank. Today he advises the bank’s International Finance Corporation, as well as the International Monetary Fund’s strategy and policy department.
In 2008 Collier was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire “for services to scholarship and development.” In 2013, he won the A.SK Social Science Award. In 2014, he was knighted.
Collier has written for the New York Times, the Financial Times, the Wall Street Journal, and the Washington Post. His books include The Bottom Billion (Oxford University Press, 2007), which won the Lionel Gelber, Arthur Ross and Corine prizes and was the joint winner of the Estoril Global Issues Distinguished Book prize; Wars, Guns and Votes: Democracy in Dangerous Places (Vintage Books, 2009); The Plundered Planet: How to Reconcile Prosperity with Nature (Oxford University Press, 2010), and Exodus: Immigration and Multiculturalism in the 21st Century (Oxford University Press and Penguin, 2013). His current research concerns the use of natural resources for development, urbanization, the economics of HIV/AIDS, and the economics and social psychology of culture.
Alan Detheridge spent 30 years with the Royal Dutch Shell Group, retiring in April 2007 as the group’s vice president for external affairs. In addition to NRGI’s board, he sits on the boards of Management Sciences for Health, the Open Contracting Partnership and Publish What You Pay.
Over the last dozen years of a three decade-long career, Bennett Freeman has worked at the intersection of governments, international institutions, multinational companies, investors and NGOs to improve corporate conduct and to promote human rights and sustainable development around the world. An innovative leader in the fields of business and human rights, natural resource governance and responsible investment, he has played pioneering roles in developing several now well-established multi-stakeholder initiatives and global standards including the Voluntary Principles on Security and Human Rights, the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) and the Global Network Initiative (GNI).
For nine years through April 2015, he was Senior Vice President-Sustainability Research and Policy at Calvert Investments, the largest family of sustainable and responsible (SRI) mutual funds in the U.S. He led the firm’s environmental, social and governance research and analysis and its shareholder advocacy and public policy initiatives on issues such as Sudan divestment and human rights in Myanmar; extractive revenue transparency and conflict minerals; internet freedom of expression and privacy; climate policy and adaptation. He also developed the themes of new funds focused on alternative energy, water sustainability and emerging markets.
Freeman served as a Clinton presidential appointee at the U.S. Department of State as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, as Senior Advisor to Under Secretary of State for Economic and Business Affairs Stuart Eizenstat, and as chief speechwriter for Secretary of State Warren Christopher. Previously he was Manager-Corporate Affairs for GE and began his career as a speechwriter and presidential campaign aide to former Vice President Walter Mondale.
Sean Hinton joined the Open Society Foundations in September 2015 as chief executive officer of the Soros Economic Development Fund and director of the Economic Advancement Program.
Prior to this, Sean was principal of Terbish Partners, which he founded in 2007 to provide strategic advisory services on cross-border transactions in China, Mongolia and Africa, focusing on the social and economic impact of large-scale extractive investments. He was a long-term senior advisor to Goldman Sachs (Asia) and the Rio Tinto group. Sean’s other roles included: deputy-chairman of SouthGobi Resources; special advisor to the CEO of SOHO China; and chairman of China Networks.
Sean has over 25 years of experience in China and Mongolia particularly, where he first lived from 1988-1995. He subsequently served as Mongolia’s first honorary consul-general in Australia.
Sean began his career as a consultant at McKinsey & Company in its Sydney and London offices, and was a specialist in McKinsey’s media and entertainment practice. He studied at the GSMD in London, the University of Cambridge and the MIT Sloan School of Management. He is a Henry Crown Fellow of the Aspen Institute and serves on the International Advisory Board of the Bahá’í Chair for World Peace at the University of Maryland.
Dr. Mo Ibrahim is the founder and chair of the Mo Ibrahim Foundation, which he established in 2006 to support good governance and exceptional leadership on the African continent.
Sudanese-born, Dr. Ibrahim has a distinguished business career. He founded Mobile Systems International, a world-leading cellular consulting and software provider, in 1989, and Celtel International, one of Africa’s leading mobile telephone companies, which pioneered mobile services in Africa, in 1998. He also founded Satya Capital Limited, a private equity fund focused on Africa.
Dr. Ibrahim has received honorary degrees and fellowships from academic institutions including Birmingham University; Bradford University; De Montfort University, Leicester; Imperial College, London; London Business School; Royal Academy of Engineering; SOAS, University of London; and the University of Pennsylvania.
He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the GSM Association’s Chairman’s Award for Lifetime Achievement (2007); the Economist Innovation Award for Social & Economic Innovation (2007); BNP Paribas Prize for Philanthropy (2008); Oslo Business for Peace Award (2009); Raymond Georis Prize for Innovative Philanthropy in Europe (2010); Clinton Global Citizen Award (2010); the Millennium Excellence Award for Actions in Africa (2012); the David Rockefeller Bridging Leadership Award (2012); the Africare Leadership Award (2013); the Kiel Institute Global Economy Prize (2013); the Eisenhower Medal for Distinguished Leadership and Service (2014); and the Foreign Policy Association Medal (2014).
In 2014, Dr. Ibrahim was appointed Commander of the Order of the Lion by President Macky Sall of Senegal, as well as Commander of the Wissam Arch by H.M. King Mohammed VI of Morocco.
Yuli Ismartono is the publisher of Tempo English, a unit of Tempo, Indonesia’s largest news weekly magazine, and the founder and managing editor of AsiaViews, a monthly regional magazine distributed as a news supplement in Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and the Philippines.
An expert in journalism and media relations, Ismartono worked for Tempo from 1983 to 1994, covering conflict areas and interviewing leaders such as Yasser Arafat, Benazir Bhutto, Dim Dae Jung, and King Norodom Sihanouk. When Indonesia’s New Order regime banned Tempo in 1994, Ismartono provided strategic communications support to a number of companies, including Freeport Indonesia. She rejoined Tempo in 2002, when the magazine resumed publishing following the establishment of a reformist government, as chief editor of Tempo English, a unit of the newly-formed Tempo Media Group.
Beyond NRGI, Ismartono sits on the board of the Bali-based Coral Triangle Center, launched by the Nature Conservancy in 2000 to assist in the capacity-building of tropical marine conservation managers and practitioners in seven Asia-Pacific countries, and Prestasi Junior Indonesia, a foundation that provides young Indonesians with extra-curricular training to value free enterprise, business and economics through school-to-work initiatives. She also supports Altsean-Burma, a non-profit organization working to advocate democracy in Myanmar, and the Washington-based consultancy firm APCO, where she is a member of the International Advisory Council.
Ismartono completed her undergraduate studies in political science in New Delhi, India, and her graduate studies in journalism at Syracuse University in New York. She is a member of AJI (Alliance of Independence Journalists), the Jakarta Editors Club, the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand, and the Jakarta Foreign Correspondents Club. She is also an Eisenhower Fellow.
Warren Krafchik is the executive director of the International Budget Partnership.
He joined IBP in 2001 from South Africa, where he founded one of the first institutions to pioneer independent budget monitoring in the global South. Under his leadership, IBP grew from a small convening organization to a globally recognized international hub for civil society public finance research, capacity building and advocacy.
Krafchik is a founding member and past civil society chair of the Open Government Partnership, the Global Initiative for Fiscal Transparency, and the Impumelelo Innovations Award program. Beyond NRGI, he sits on the board of the Transparency and Accountability Initiative.
Krafchik is an economist by training and a frequent author and speaker on public finance systems, accountability and development.
Elena A. Panfilova is the chair of the Center for Anti-Corruption Research and Initiative Transparency International - Russia, TI’s Russian chapter, which she founded in 1999. She served as its executive director until July 2014, when she became the chapter’s chair. She has been an academic, consultant and activist, held positions in the OECD and the Institute for Economy in Transition and became a member of the Russian Governmental Commission on Open Government. In August 2014, she became head of the Laboratory for Anti-Corruption Policy (which she founded in 2008), working to promote transparency and civil society. Since 2007, she has taught anti-corruption at the State University Higher School of Economics and Moscow State University. Elena was elected to the TI Board in 2011 and elected vice-chair in 2014.