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Caroline Pugh

Entrepreneur & International Activist

Spotlight on: Caroline Pugh, entrepreneur, community builder and founder of Oya Partners – a firm that supports philanthropists and family offices on a range of issues including philanthropic giving, investment strategy, community building and leadership development.

With a tenacious spirit and an insatiable drive for success, Caroline embodies entrepreneurship at her core. At only 19 years old, she founded her first tech company to develop 3D human scanning technology. Following that, she became the Chief of Staff to Aneesh Chopra, the first CTO of the United States. During this time she developed a nation network of Chiefs of Staff –eventually landing her on the “15 Female Entrepreneurs to Watch” by Entrepreneur magazine and “master networker” in Forbes.

"Think globally to challenge the status quo."

Caroline finds success through her community, stating “I only want to surround myself with people that I can learn from, build with, laugh with, and be challenged by.”

This mentality led her to her next venture, and perhaps the most impressive yet. Caroline is currently serving as a Board Member and Senior Advisor to the Mandela Institute of Humanity. The Institute is founded and led by activist and humanitarian Ndaba Mandela, which builds upon the legacy of his grandfather, Nelson Mandela. The non-profit strives to bridge the gap between Africa and the rest of the world by empowering the next generation of leaders through their “100 Mandela’s” program and fighting for the eradication of HIV/AIDS.

When asked what is next for her, she responded, “2020 marks a new decade which poses a prime time to recalibrate, reflect and a set a big vision for the future. This quote by Joel Barker will be my mantra for 2020: Vision without action is merely a dream. Action without vision just passes the time. Vision with action can change the world.”