Buffett Institute announces winner of new global leadership award

Peter Kotecki, Assistant Campus Editor

As a result of Roberta Buffett Elliott’s recent gift of more than $100 million to Northwestern, the Buffett Institute chose entrepreneur and activist Khalida Brohi as the winner of the inaugural Buffett Award for Emerging Global Leaders.

The $10,000 award recognizes outstanding leadership among young people working in global health, social or economic development, human rights, climate change and food security.

Brohi, 26, founded Sughar Empowerment Society, a nonprofit organization in Pakistan that provides socioeconomic opportunities for rural and tribal women.

Sociology Prof. Bruce Carruthers, director of the Buffett Institute, said the award was established to recognize the accomplishments of young global leaders like Brohi.

“In honoring her achievements, we want to encourage her and other young leaders like her to continue their important work,” Carruthers said in a news release.

Brohi was chosen by members of the Buffett Institute’s undergraduate affiliate program — open to all NU undergraduates — at the beginning of Fall Quarter.

Emory Erker-Lynch, manager of undergraduate initiatives at the Buffett Institute, said Brohi received significant support from the undergraduate affiliate voters.

“Khalida’s courage and approach to empowering the confidence and skills of Pakistani women through socio-economic development and education in enterprise clearly resonates with the Northwestern community,” Erker-Lynch said in the release.

Brohi will visit NU in April 2016 to accept her award, participate in a workshop with students and address the University community. The event will be a great opportunity for students interested in social issues and international development, Carruthers said.

“In bringing Buffett Award winners like Khalida to campus, we will build links between the Northwestern community and a group of very special people who are still at the earliest, and in some ways most exciting, stages of their careers,” Carruthers said.

Brohi launched Sughar Empowerment Society in 2009 to provide tribal and rural women opportunities to grow their skills as well as learn leadership skills. She was named to Newsweek’s “25 under 25 Women of Impact” list as well as the news magazine’s “100 Women Who Matter in Pakistan” list.

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