Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Connie Collingsworth and Microfund for Women’s Muna Sukhtian step down as Co-Chairs

New York, October 23, 2020 — Women’s World Banking today announced a change in its board leadership, as Co-Chairs Connie Collingsworth, Chief Operating Officer of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), and Muna Sukhtian, Managing Director of Microfund for Women, conclude their terms as Co-Chairs. Incoming Chair Janet Truncale is the Vice Chair and Regional Managing Partner for the Americas Financial Services Organization of Ernst & Young LLP, the US firm (EY), who has served on the Women’s World Banking board since 2018. As the Chair of the Audit & Finance Committee, Ms. Truncale brought a new level of sophistication and rigor to the board’s financial oversight and stewardship. Incoming Vice Chair Aniqa Sandhu is Veon’s Managing Director for Group Digital Financial Services in London where she is responsible for investments to build the ecosystem for digital financial services to accelerate financial inclusion. Ms. Sandhu has been on the Women’s World Banking Board since 2019, bringing a wealth of experience in women’s financial inclusion issues from her time as Chief Digital Officer at mobile money provider Jazz in Pakistan. These changes are effective immediately.

The two executives will replace BMGF’s Collingsworth and Microfund for Women’s Sukhtian, who served as Co-Chairs since 2016. Ms. Collingsworth has served on the Women’s World Banking board since 2010, and Ms. Sukhtian since 2015. Ms. Collingsworth will step down from the board entirely, while Ms. Sukhtian will continue to serve on the board, including as a member of its Leadership & Governance Committee.

Speaking about the changes, Women’s World Banking’s President and CEO Mary Ellen Iskenderian said, “Since they joined our board, Janet and Aniqa have brought a sense of energy, purpose, and the highest standards of professionalism to our discussions and work, and so I am thrilled and excited to have them as partners, mentors, and advisors to Women’s World Banking, to me and to my leadership team as we continue to work towards financial inclusion for 100 million more low-income women by 2027.”

She continues, “I also want to thank Connie and Muna for their unstinting support for our organization and its work, and their strong leadership over the last four years. Under their tenure, Women’s World Banking celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2019. In the last year alone, we launched both our Leadership and Diversity Program for Regulators and our Fintech Innovation Challenge, two initiatives which encourage greater diversity among regulatory managers, and more innovative solutions aimed at women. We have grown our Network to 51 financial services partners spanning 28 countries. And we have fully invested the Women’s World Banking Capital Partners, LP fund, to support ten portfolio companies in eight countries, and launched a larger follow-on fund to continue investing in women-focused financial institutions. We could not have achieved all this, and more, without Connie’s and Muna’s leadership and vision, and the entire board’s continued support and guidance.”

Commenting on the news, Ms. Truncale said: “The world continues to face the stark economic disparities that COVID-19 has exposed, and our work to financially include more women threatens to be set back by decades. I am looking forward to working with Mary Ellen, Aniqa, and the rest of the board and leadership team, drawing on their experiences, to ensure that we continue to serve the nearly one billion women globally who are outside of the formal financial system.”

 

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About Women’s World Banking

Women’s World Banking designs and invests in the financial solutions, institutions, and policy environments in emerging markets to create greater economic stability and prosperity for women, their families, and their communities. With a global reach of 51 partners in 28 countries serving more than 67 million women clients, Women’s World Banking drives impact through its scalable, market-driven solutions; gender-lens private equity fund; and leadership and diversity programs. To learn more about Women’s World Banking, visit womensworldbanking.org.

Media Contacts

Kate Stence ks@womensworldbanking.org

Andy Woolnough aw@womensworldbanking.org