2017 Speakers

Melinda Gates

Philanthropist Melinda Gates has dedicated her life to achieving transformational improvements in the health and prosperity of families, communities, and societies. Core to her work is empowering women and girls to help them realize their full potential. As Co-chair of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which is guided by the belief that every life has equal value, Melinda shapes and approves strategies, reviews results, and sets the overall direction of the world’s largest private foundation.

Melinda recently launched an executive office, Pivotal Ventures, which enables her to bring together the different strands of her advocacy and philanthropic work and create meaningful change. Melinda received a bachelor’s degree from Duke and an MBA from Duke’s Fuqua School. After joining Microsoft Corp. in 1987, she helped develop many of the company’s multimedia products. In 1996, Melinda left Microsoft to focus on her philanthropic work and family.