Press Releases

President Clinton Opened 2012 Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting Emphasizing Action through Social Investment, Empowering Girls and Women, and Designing for Impact

September 23, 2012

Sept. 23, 2012
Contact: [email protected]

Featured speakers included Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, IDEO Chief Executive Officer Tim Brown, and Walmart President and CEO Michael T. Duke 

New commitments focusing on environmental protection, women’s empowerment, sustainable energy and global health and progress reports on previous commitments announced 

New York, NY – Today, Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, and Walmart President and CEO Michael T. Duke joined President Bill Clinton and other global leaders in New York City at the opening of the eighth Annual Meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative. Over the course of the three-day meeting, pioneers and innovators from business, government, and civil society will examine the most effective ways to design a more prosperous and sustainable world and confront the most urgent global challenges.

“As CGI’s eighth Annual Meeting begins, I am deeply grateful that such a diverse group of esteemed leaders are here with us to motivate global action and change lives worldwide,” said President Clinton. “Their dedication reminds us that the international demand for solutions must take priority over the differences that divide us. It’s the same dedication to humanity that has helped CGI members make nearly 2,300 commitments that have impacted the lives of more than 400 million people since 2005. In the next three days, I look forward to seeing how the world’s leading thinkers will propose creative and inclusive solutions to the obstacles facing our planet.”

This year’s theme, “Designing for Impact,” focuses on the capacity of global citizens to cultivate an environment where their lives and the systems they utilize can serve as an effective vehicle for change. Through this theme, participants will convey how innovation and creativity can transform into platforms for global action. Each day of the Annual Meeting, CGI members will use a different lens to approach designing their work for impact from the empowerment of women and girls to social investment.

President Clinton moderated the opening panel featuring Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, and Walmart President and CEO Michael T. Duke, who discussed how we can better design our world to cultivate greater opportunity and equality. The conversation followed opening remarks from IDEO CEO Tim Brown, whose cutting-edge ideas on design have influenced the meeting’s creative focus this year.

In addition to moderating the discussion in the plenary session, President Clinton announced new commitments for 2012 and reports on progress of commitments made at past CGI Annual Meetings.

The 2012 CGI Annual Meeting is sponsored by Abraaj Capital, American Federation of Teachers, Ambassador Gianna Angelopoulos, APCO Worldwide, Barclays, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, Booz Allen Hamilton, Cisco, CLSA Asia-Pacific Markets, Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank, Delos Living, Deutsche Bank, Diageo PLC, The Dow Chemical Company, Duke Energy Corporation, ExxonMobil, The Ford Foundation, Varkey GEMS Foundation, The Goldman Sachs Group Inc, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing, Hewlett Packard Company, Inter-American Development Bank, InterEnergy, Jive Software, Knoll Inc, Laureate International Universities, Microsoft Corporation, NRG Energy Inc, Procter & Gamble, The Rockefeller Foundation, Shangri-La Industries, Standard Chartered Bank, Starkey Hearing Foundation, Swiss Reinsurance Company, Tom Golisano, Toyota Motors Corporation, United Postcode Lotteries, The Victor Pinchuk Foundation, and Western Union Financial Services Inc.

The full program, webcast schedule, and list of all CGI Annual Meeting commitments are available here:

The following new commitments were announced today in plenary sessions:

GIVE: Lights and Power for Panzi Hospital
Commitment by: GlobalECHO Foundation
In 2012, the GlobalECHO Foundation committed to providing $150,000 over a two-year period that will help the Panzi Hospital in the Democratic Republic of Congo transition from a reliance on diesel fuel and an undependable grid to clean, sustainable, and renewable energy. Specifically, the Foundation will fund the installation of solar panels donated by another CGI member, Suntech Power Holdings Company Limited.

Health Justice for People with Intellectual Disabilities
Commitment by: Paychex Corporation and Special Olympics International
In 2012, Tom Golisano committed $12 million to fund 12 Special Olympics (SOI) International Healthy Communities Demonstration Projects worldwide. Through this contribution, SOI will identify communities where they will deliver a sustained set of health interventions and supports for individuals with intellectual disabilities in a comprehensive, community-based year round model. This commitment will enable SOI to expand its data collection and ability to document the global health status of people with intellectual disabilities, raising awareness and generating collaborative solutions to the issue of health disparities facing people with intellectual disabilities.

Empowering Palestinian Women In and Through Media
Commitment by: NISAA Broadcast Radio Company
In 2012, 96 NISAA FM, a woman-owned radio station in the West Bank, committed to train and eventually hire community reporters and students in radio reporting and broadcasting. In order to work against gender stereotypes in media by increasing both women’s roles in media leadership as well as positive representations of women in media, every trainee will learn essential reporting skills, such as gathering news from the field, producing audio reports, reporting live, and working inside the NISAA studio.

Bridging the Gap: Empowering Women Through Education
Commitment by: Georges Malaika Foundation
In 2012, the Georges Malaika Foundation (GMF) committed to expand educational access and quality learning opportunities to 340 young girls in the Katanga Province in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  Through the use of a holistic approach to education, the GMF School will provide tuition-free education that also offers two meals a day, clean drinking water, sanitary latrines, internet access, and highly-trained teachers.

Man Up Congo: Youth Ending Violence Against Girls in Schools
Commitment by: Man Up Campaign
In 2012, the Man Up Campaign committed to support its two youth delegations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo who create community-based programs to combat gender violence, specifically the normalization of sexual violence against girls in school. Through Man Up’s support, the two youth delegations will be able to implement awareness raising activities (theater and workshops) to directly engage over 300 students around issues of gender-based violence.

Solar Panels for Panzi Hospital
Commitment by: Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. and The Panzi Hospital of Bukavu
In 2012, Suntech, the world’s largest producer of solar panels, partnered with CGI member GlobalECHO Foundation, committed to outfit the Panzi Hospital in the Democratic Republic of Congo to run on solar power. This commitment will help the hospital transition from a reliance on diesel fuel and an undependable grid to clean, sustainable, and renewable energy.


The following progress reports were announced today in plenary sessions:

P&G Children’s Safe Drinking Water: Save a Life an Hour
Commitment by: Procter & Gamble
In 2010, Procter and Gamble (P&G) committed to increase its scope of providing clean drinking water to developing countries by aiming to save a life every hour, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, by 2020. The PUR packet program has provided 1 billion liters of clean drinking water in the last 10 months and hopes to scale up with the PUR packet providing 2 billion liters a year by 2020.

Avon Foundation Global Breast Cancer Clinical Scholars
Commitment by: The Avon Foundation
In 2011, the Avon Foundation committed to create the Women Global Breast Cancer Clinical Scholars Program (Avon Global Scholars) to provide clinically-focused scholarship opportunities to breast cancer specialists outside the United States. The goal of the program is to give advanced training at leading U.S. breast cancer centers affiliated with the Avon Foundation to improve treatment and care of women facing breast cancer around the world.

Addressing Sexual Violence Against Girls
Commitment by: Becton, Dickinson & Co. (BD)
In 2009, Becton, Dickinson and Company (BD) and many other partners committed, via Together for Girls (TfG), to develop and implement sexual violence prevention and response programs at the country level. Together for Girls, the first global initiative to address human injustice and public health impact of sexual violence against girls, uses information from national surveys to mobilize government leaders, civil society, and donors.

Dream Builder: The Women's Business Creator
Commitment by: Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Foundation
In 2011, Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold, along with the Thunderbird School of Global Management, committed to develop and pilot an online Women’s Business Academy with the goal of providing business skills training to an estimated 3,400 women who plan to start or grow small businesses. The official program name has since been changed to “DreamBuilder: The Women’s Business Creator.” With curriculum and technological design well under way, DreamBuilder is on track to fulfill the Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to train 3,400 women over the next 5 years.

For more information please visit Follow us on Twitter @ClintonGlobal and Facebook at for meeting news and highlights. The event hashtag is #CGI2012.


About the Clinton Global Initiative
Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. CGI Annual Meetings have brought together more than 150 heads of state, 20 Nobel Prize laureates, and hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations and NGOs, major philanthropists, and members of the media. To date CGI members have made more than 2,100 commitments, which have already improved the lives of nearly 400 million people in more than 180 countries. When fully funded and implemented, these commitments will be valued at $69.2 billion.

CGI also convenes CGI America, a meeting focused on collaborative solutions to economic recovery in the United States, and CGI University (CGI U), which brings together undergraduate and graduate students to address pressing challenges in their community or around the world. For more information, visit and follow us on Twitter @ClintonGlobal and Facebook at



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