Award-winning chef, Owner, Think Food Group, & Founder, World Central Kitchen @WCKitchen
Named one of Time Magazine’s “100 Most Influential People” in both 2012 and 2018, and awarded the 2015 National Humanities Medal, José Andrés is an internationally-recognized culinary innovator, New York Times best-selling author, educator, humanitarian, and chef/owner of ThinkFoodGroup. A pioneer of Spanish tapas in the United States, he has been recognized as “Outstanding Chef” and “Humanitarian of the Year” by the James Beard Foundation and is known for his groundbreaking avant-garde cuisine and his award-winning group of 31 restaurants located throughout the country and beyond. As a naturalized citizen originally from Spain, Andrés has been a tireless advocate for immigration reform. In 2010, Andrés formed World Central Kitchen, a non-profit that provides smart solutions to end hunger and poverty by using the power of food to empower communities and strengthen economies. Notably, his team served over 3.7 million meals to the people of Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria, an experience about which he wrote the bestselling book We Fed An Island: The True Story of Rebuilding Puerto Rico, One Meal at a Time. World Central Kitchen’s food first responders have continued to deploy to natural disasters in California, Guatemala, North Carolina, Indonesia, and Colombia, reaching 8 million meals served and counting.
Director-General, Evaluation, World Bank Group
Alison Evans, a United Kingdom national, assumed her position as Director-General, Evaluation at the World Bank Group on January 3, 2019. Before her current role, Dr. Evans was the Chief Commissioner of the UK’s Independent Commission for Aid Impact (ICAI) based in London, England where she provided strong leadership and vision to the transformation of that organization's scrutiny mandate.
Alison Evans brings more than 25 years of international development experience, spanning policy, research and evaluation across diverse geopolitical and multicultural environments. Prior to joining ICAI, she was Executive Director of the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), the UK’s leading international development think tank, helping to steer new strategic directions and a strong results focus for the organization. She worked for six years as a Senior Economist at the World Bank, as a member of the team producing the WDR 1997 and as a Senior Evaluation Specialist in OED (former name for the Independent Evaluation Group).
She earned a Ph.D. in Development Studies from the University of Sussex and a Master's in Economics and Politics from the University of Cambridge.
Julie Gathoni Sumira Gichuru
Ms. Julie Gichuru is an entrepreneur and media personality with investments across media, ICT, retail and entertainment sectors. She is a Fellow of the Africa Leadership Initiative EA and hosts the pan African television show Africa Leadership Dialogues. Ms. Gichuru’s career in the media over the past 18 years has seen her work across the fields of broadcast, print and digital media, pioneering an impressive number of celebrated shows.
Ms. Gichuru is the first African woman to receive the Martin Luther King Salute to Greatness for peace advocacy in Kenya in 2007 and 2008. Through her company ARIMUS MEDIA Limited Julie drives African conversations on leadership and development and oversees the production of quality African content. She is a Fellow of the United Nations Foundation Global Journalist Corps, she has been recognized by Women in Enterprise as one of the 60 Most Influential African Women in the World and is a Fellow of the Archbishop Desmond Tutu Leadership Program. Ms. Gichuru has been recognized as a Young Global Leader under the World Economic Forum, and received the Order of the Grand Warrior from former President Mwai Kibaki for her contributions to nation building in Kenya.