Ashok Alexander, Former Gates Foundation India Country Director

Leadership Lessons from the Field Less Traveled

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Ashok Alexander led the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s India office from its inception in 2003 until 2012, where he created Avahan, the Foundation’s flagship India AIDS prevention program. Avahan, which became probably the largest private prevention program ever undertaken in HIV/AIDS, scaled up Avahan across six states in India within three years. Over a decade, Ashok led the growth and expansion of the Gates Foundation’s first country office, with a grant portfolio of over $1 billion spanning health, sanitation and agriculture. Prior to joining the Foundation, Ashok worked in the private sector for 24 years in Hong Kong, the United States and India, including serving as Director of McKinsey and Company and head of the consulting firm’s New Delhi office.  In spring 2013,  Mr. Alexander was a Menschel Senior Leadership Fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health. Ashok is a graduate of St. Stephens College in New Delhi, has a post-graduate degree from the Delhi School of Economics, and an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad.