It was wonderful to see so many Partners, Associate Partners and Individual Associates at our recent AGM. Some of what I am sharing with you in this message formed part of the AGM welcome but I make no apology for the repetition; sometimes there are some things that can stand being said or heard more than once.
A good example would be the sincere thanks that must go to all of you who are connected with the GRLI and who are amplifying global responsibility in such turbulent, often chaotic and increasingly complicated environments. Despite challenging circumstances and contexts, previously impenetrable boundaries and barriers are being dismantled in the activation of positive change and impact in our landscape.
One thing that has helped the Core Team of John, Anders and myself to stay steady has been the Margaret Mead quote:
‘Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. For indeed, that’s all who ever have’.
It would be remiss of me if I didn’t take this opportunity to highlight some of those caring people who are working closely with the GRLI to support a changed world.
Throughout the last year we have been very fortunate to have been steered by a strong and very committed GRLI Board and Guardian Group and I know I speak on behalf of John and myself when I express our heartfelt thanks to all those who give of themselves and their time so generously to ensuring the continued rigour and integrity of the GRLI. Particular thanks to Vanessa Duckenfield, Chair of the Group of Guardians, who finds time within a busy business and family life to ensure a substantial steer is felt by the Core Team and Board from the wider Partnership.
The AGM gave us such a good opportunity to publicly recognise those immediately leaving their formal role on the Board of the GRLI. Firstly, a huge thank you to Julia Christensen Hughes, a deeply committed and engaged Board Member and pioneering partner of the Deans and Directors Cohort. We are delighted that Julia will be staying connected to the GRLI through HESI as an advisor on ratings and rankings.
Thanks also to Sophie Charrois, who is stepping down as Co-President of oikos. oikos has a seat on our Board as a strategic partner along with EFMD and AASCB and Sophie has brought a refreshing and much needed perspective to the Board dialogue. We are very sorry to lose Sophie but look forward to welcoming a duo of Co-Presidents, Carolin Lemke and Darija Miletic to the Board.
As many of you will be aware, Caryn Beck Dudley will be stepping down from her position as President and CEO of AACSB International in the middle of next year. There will be further opportunities to acknowledge the value the GRLI places on our relationship with AACSB in general and with Caryn in particular, in the meantime, we are working with Caryn to ensure a smooth transition to her successor.
In terms of the future of the GRLI Board, for the first time we have created a role for a Chair Elect to take effect six months before the current term of office ends.
As per our terms of reference as a Foundation for Public Good, the Chair of the Board is chosen from amongst the Partner representatives, and we are fortunate indeed to have such strong representation from which to choose. Following recommendations from the Governance Committee to the Board, we are very pleased to announce that Peter Mollegaard, has accepted the role of Chair Elect for six months to June 2023, when he will assume the role of Chair of the Board. Peter is former Dean of Maastricht School of Management, which is a current GRLI Partner, and having returned to his homeland, is currently a Dean at the University of Southern Denmark. In addition, Peter is a Board Member of AACSB and Chair of the Danish Council on Climate Change.
It would be even more remiss of me if I didn’t recognise the contribution and commitment made by John as our Executive Director over the last year. If you haven’t already heard the recording of the AGM, I would strongly urge you to do so as it gives an astounding insight into the breadth and depth of actions, engagements and relationships entered into and sustained by the GRLI over the last year. An amazing achievement and primarily thanks to John and, of course, to you, the Partnership, to our Strategic Partners EFMD, AACSB and oikos and to all of us engaged in finding and forging a kinder and more inclusive world.
Wishing everyone health, joy and peace now and throughout 2023