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2013 World of Difference 100 Award Recipients | Page 3
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 Barbara Hackman Franklin      United States of America       Public Service/Government

The Honorable Barbara Hackman Franklin has served five U.S. presidents and was the 29th U.S. Secretary of Commerce under President George H.W. Bush, a role in which her historic mission to China re-opened commercial relations with that country. Ms. Franklin led the first White House effort to recruit women for high-level government jobs as a staff assistant to President Richard Nixon, an effort that resulted in tripling the number of women in those positions (1971-73). Her White House story is told in a book by Lee Stout, A Matter of Simple Justice: the Untold Story of Barbara Hackman Franklin and A Few Good Women. Her trailblazing career includes corporate, governmental, academic and entrepreneurial work, and she was one of the first women to graduate from Harvard Business School. Ms. Franklin has been an active leader of professional organizations and was the first woman to serve as Chairman of the Economic Club of New York (2003-2007). She was a founding member of Executive Women in Government, is a member of the President’s Circle of the International Women’s Forum of Washington, DC. Ms. Franklin is the President and CEO of the Barbara Franklin Enterprises a private international consulting firm. She is an advocate for and an adviser to American companies doing business in international markets, notably China.

 Monowara Hakim Ali     Bangladesh       Entrepreneurship
Monowara Hakim Ali is pioneer of women entrepreneurs in Bangladesh, a social entrepreneur with a passion for connecting people globally. Director of Italy’s Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce & Industry, she is a pioneer of woman entrepreneurs in Bangladesh. In 1978, she started her first business, A. Intraco Tours & Travels, in tourism. Since then, she has successfully established CNG & solar business under the name Intraco Group and has also established the first environment-friendly butterfly park. As a women entrepreneur she had to face various challenges and obstacles doing business in a conservative community in Bangladesh, especially in Chittagong. But she believes in facing challenges. Ms Ali started Women entrepreneurship development activities in the 1990s, establishing Chittagong Women Entrepreneurs Association in 1999 and the Chittagong Women Chamber of Commerce & Industry in 2003 - the first regional women’s Chamber in Bangladesh. To enable women entrepreneurs to access capital, she established the Women Cooperative Bank Ltd. Through her tenacity, fearlessness, creativity, passion, tireless efforts and active support, more than 5,000 women are doing business and over 15,000 women are getting support and benefits from her organization and together they are having a significant positive effect on the socio-economic development of the country. She has also established an orphanage, a women’s driving school and a girl’s school to broaden even further the support of women’s economic empowerment.


Susan Hall     United States of America      Education

Susan Hall is the co-founder of, an international website for women in finance. A media expert, author and educator, Ms. Hall is committed to enhancing financial literacy for women worldwide. Innovative approaches include interviews and onsite reports of financial literacy programs, a database of important articles by and about women in finance and topical news. The site is also marshalling the eyes of women on the ground in politics and finance to call attention to corrupt financial activities that impact women and children disproportionately. Whistleblowers are honored, with particular concern for women in finance and entrepreneurs. defines financial literacy broadly to make sure that women in business are financially aware. They also show the many career opportunities available to women in the financial world. W-T-W, together with women’s networks worldwide, is creating a comprehensive database of financial knowledge to support the economic advancement of women.

Beverly Hurley      United Kingdom       Entrepreneurship

Beverly Hurley is an inspiring serial entrepreneur and one of the UK's few experts on growing sustainable and successful women-owned businesses. She founded and directs
Enterprising Women, a rapidly expanding national community of over 8000 women. Over 80% of businesses started through the program are still running after four years, far outstripping national averages. It has been highly commended by the European Commission, and in 2009, Enterprising Women was selected by BIS as one of three national best practice examples for supporting entrepreneurship, and presented at the EC Charter Conference in Stockholm. YTKOGroup also has been awarded one of the only two prestigious Prowess "Flagship of Flagship” awards for excellence in support for women’s enterprise. A recipient of the Queen’s Award for Enterprise Promotion and the Enterprising Britain Award for 2012, Mr. Hurley is CEO at YTKO and founder of Outset, a program whose mission is to enable the creation and support the growth of over 6000 businesses, which together will contribute £1billion each year to the UK economy by 2020. Prior to YTKO, she started and built several successful companies. YTKO Group has demonstrated to the unemployed that self-employment is a realistic alternative to unemployment.

Elin Hurvenes       Norway       Entrepreneurship

When Norway implemented bold, world-leading legislation requiring Oslo Stock Exchange-listed companies to have 40% women on their boards, Elin Hurvenes was a key player in making that happen. She founded The Professional Boards Forum, the first-ever international match-making initiative between board-ready women and company chairmen. The Forum provides new networks and contacts in addition to a unique opportunity for businesswomen to demonstrate their competence by discussing complex financial and strategic issues in "simulated board meeting” events. In 2008, Ms. Hurvenes expanded to the UK with business partner Jane Scot and the support of Vodafone, Royal Bank of Scotland, Pearson, Accenture and PwC. In 2012 she expanded into the Netherlands, in cooperation with Direction and with the support of Shell, Heineken, Accenture, PwC, SNS REAAL and Gasunie. In 2013, she added Switzerland to the list. Ms. Hurvenes is widely cited as an authority by international media such as The New York Times, The Financial Times, BBC World News, The Times and the Wall Street Journal. She is a frequent keynote speaker at key international conferences and in 2012 she became a partner of the mentoring firm CMi, providing Chairmen Mentors for top executives in global firms.


Morten Huse       Norway      Champion, Women’s Economic Empowerment

For more than 20 years, Professor Morten Huse has demonstrated with his research how women’s participation and the diversity they represent are both essential to creating value on boards. He has followed the discussion in Norway and internationally about women on corporate boards, including the evolution, implementation and consequences of the Norwegian Gender Quota Law on Corporate Boards. His focus has been on board dynamics and characteristics that lead to, and keep women in, powerful positions in the corporate world, particularly his observations about "Golden Skirts” - women who hold multiple board positions and form the female counterparts of the well-established male type who serves on multiple boards. Mr. Huse is the Reinhard Mohn Chair of Management and Governance at the University of Witten/Herdecke, Germany. He is also Professor of Organisation and Management at BI Norwegian Business School, Oslo, a member of the Catalyst Europe Advisory Board and a former president of the European Academy of Management (EURAM). Professor Huse’s main research activities are related to value-creating boards, board behaviour, board dynamics, board leadership and board diversity from entrepreneurial and strategic management perspectives.

Shereen Ibrahim Allam       Egypt        Community

By 2008, after setting up and running two successful businesses, Shereen Ibrahim Allam was ready to follow her passion for developing people. She established AWTAD (Association for Women's Total Advancement & Development), an NGO for the development and economic empowerment of women and youth in Egypt. AWTAD’s uses mentoring, simulations and enabling platforms to support women to realize their full economic empowerment and achieve their dreams AWTAD is also a founding member of the MENA-BWN (Middle East & North Africa Businesswomen’s Network); which currently has ten other member countries, known as "Network Hubs," from the MENA region. In her own career, after working for five years in multi nationals, Ms. Allam established a workshop to design, produce and distribute baby’s clothes, Baby Boom, which has become a huge success. She then founded a recycling company, Ecotek, becoming a pioneer in introducing recycling into Egypt. Once again, she resumed her role of a mentor and coached around 80 of her staff on all the required skills for this unique business. This entrepreneurial experience and passion to uplift women ultimately led to her establishing AWTAD.

Christina Ioannidis       United Kingdom        Entrepreneurship

Christina Ioannidis has been supporting the economic empowerment of women worldwide since 2004. Christina has developed training programs around the subject of leadership and personal development for women; but aside from her "day job” as the CEO of Aquitude, she has been single-minded in her support of women’s economic empowerment. She has served as a board member of the European Professional Women’s Network, London; she has been on the board of TIAW, running the Women on Boards program, as well as supporting the Marketing Committee; and she was one of the original Mentors for the Cherie Blair Foundation for Women in 2009. In the latter capacity, she mentored, in her own time, an entrepreneurial woman in India. She has also served as active members in the City Women’s Network in London and the Arab International Women’s Forum. She has won many accolades for her work and has used her reputation to propel women’s organizations forward and help them grow within the eye of the press. As an avid networker, she always seeks to connect women of influence who can support each other’s business and personal growth. Moreover, she has shown little fear during a reception in 10 Downing Street in highlighting to the UK Prime Minister that the lack of Women on Boards is a detriment to the UK’s Commercial competitiveness!

Marilyn Johnson      United States of America       Corporate

As vice president of market development, Marilyn Johnson uses her expertise to attract a wide range of women-owned and minority businesses to IBM. Among the many positions she holds, Ms. Johnson is a board director for the National Council of Negro Women, a co-chair of the Women’s Leadership Exchange Multicultural Advisory Board, and a Sequoyah Fellow of the American Indian Science and Engineering Society. She has received the Leading by Example award from the Center for Women’s Business Research, and was honored as one of Network Journal magazine’s Top 25 Influential Black Women. She is among a select few women comprising New York City YMCA’s Academy of Leaders, and was honored with the Count Me In Women’s Business Growth Forum’s Corporate Visionary Award. She has held positions on the executive boards of the Council for Better Business Bureaus, Asian Pacific Islander American Scholarship Foundation, National Council of Negro Women and American Airlines Marketing Advisory Council. She has been applauded for her active commitment to mentoring and coaching activities. Johnson has been a featured speaker for numerous professional organizations around the world, including the World Diversity Conference in the City of Prague in the Czech Republic, Black Women Executive Roundtable hosted by the Mayor of Paris, France, and Blacks in Government, Washington, DC.   


Hafdis Jonsdottir      Iceland       Community/Entrepreneurship

Hafdis Jonsdottir, is the past-president for FKA (The Icelandic Association of Women in Business). As well as being a volunteer leader for this important women’s organization, Ms. Jonsdottir is described as a creative, fast-forward thinking Icelandic entrepreneur who loves to motivate people to lead in their own lives. She is renowned as a champion for women’s economic empowerment. Her most significant focus has been her tireless devotion to campaign for including more women on boards. She has been a key factor in the quick progress of Iceland becoming one of the top countries in the world in regard to gender diversity on corporate boards. She has truly been making a world of difference with her admirable work to open up corporate boards for more talented and qualified women.

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The International Alliance for Women is organized as a 501(c)3 foundation in the USA. We are a global community of economically empowered women across all continents that welcome you to our members’ cities and countries, connecting you with their networks of business and community professionals.

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The International Alliance for Women connects leading women’s organizations worldwide to leverage their reach and resources, creating a global community of economically empowered women.

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