““Fixing failed states: the folly of foreign aid, the catastrophe of counterinsurgency, and the embers of entrepreneurship”

World Affairs Council of Central Illinois Presentation/Dinner
Speaker: Jesse Sullivan

Tuesday, May 2, 7:30 pm, Brookens Auditorium, University of Illinois Springfield
Program is free and open to the public.
Reception 5:30/Dinner 6:15 pm in PAC Restaurant, Program 7:30 pm in Brookens Auditorium

Mr. Sullivan has been the recipient of many awards and is widely recognized. In the broadest sense, Jesse Sullivan brings a diverse background with expertise in the following areas: livelihoods, economic opportunity, clean energy and financial services. However, when you delve further you will find his life has been one of dedicating and creating value in the most challenging environments.
In the deadliest district of Afghanistan Jesse led a team on counterinsurgency operations with the U.S. Department of Defense. His commanding officer stated, “Sullivan’s impact is immeasurable in dollars saved and lives not lost.” Sullivan was awarded the Global War on Terrorism Medal, the NATO Service Award, and was named a National Veteran Fellow by the World Affairs Council.
After the earthquake in Haiti of 2010, Jesse served as the Special Assistant to the Haitian Ambassador for Relief Efforts where he was named CNN’s Most Intriguing Person of the Day. He was responsible for shaping the resettlement strategy for Haiti’s largest refugee camp.
In South America, Jesse launched two academies for entrepreneurship; and in Bhutan, he worked with the Royal Family to design the nation’s first impact investment fund using the concept of Gross National Happiness. Also, in Palestine, Jesse worked with youth groups doing interfaith reconciliation work;
He served as a foreign policy advisor on a U.S. Congressional campaign, and helped to grow a national nonprofit to assist wounded veterans returning from Iraq & Afghanistan called The Mission Continues. Sullivan also founded OneWorld, a global justice magazine, that has circulated over 100,000 copies, received national awards, and even Desmond Tutu said, “It blew my mind.”
Most recently, Jesse is the founder & CEO of Alter, a venture that aims to transform failed states through entrepreneurship. The goal is to create jobs in poor countries rather than provide handouts, by finding the best entrepreneurs and matching them with Silicon Valley resources.
Sullivan received his bachelors degree from Saint Louis University in Theology & International Studies. He received a Master’s degree in Global Governance & Diplomacy from Oxford University as Rotary Scholar and received an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business where he was a recipient of the Social Change Leadership Award.