BIO: TAMI KESSELMAN
Consulant. Speaker. Expert. Lecturer.
An alumna of Bain & Co and Harvard, Tami Kesselman is a pioneer and thought leader in impact investing, working with family offices, investment advisors, and high profile entrepreneurial teams as they evolve impact strategies and scale their growth globally. She is known for her ability to rapidly identify risk in business models and help clients connect the dots to fix problems before they impact the bottom line.
An organizational strategy advisor by training, Tami’s career has included work across sectors, consulting to clients ranging from multinational corporation C-suite executives to teams of venture-backed entrepreneurs, and from academic institutions to intergovernmental collaborations, as well as 1:1 coaching for individual senior executives, each time with a focus on mission impact and goal attainment, mitigating risk while maximizing potential. Prior to launching Aligned Investing Global, Tami was a consultant with Bain & Company, until she was recruited to American Express where she rose through the ranks to Senior Director in global strategic planning and focused on M&A work for the CEO as well as heading multiple Asia Pacific and New York-based teams. Along with corporate work, she served in executive positions for the UN Commission on Environment & Development and as Worldwide Training Director for AIESEC International.
Her strong global perspective comes from work that has taken her to China, Hong Kong, Thailand, Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia, Australia, Hungary, England, Belgium, France, Italy, The Netherlands, Canada, Mexico, Colombia, and Brazil, with initiatives that often involve project-based capacity building, systems thinking, and implementing the resulting strategic redirection.
Tami has developed a loyal following for the proprietary heuristic framework she first launched in 2014 around SMARTimpact™ drawing upon insights from working with a broad range of top business leaders and entrepreneurial stars. Through both Aligned Investing Global and SolveForGood, Tami specializes in focusing clients on strategic capacity building, risk mitigation, and systems thinking at scale to improve financial returns while meeting impact targets.
Since launching Aligned Investing Global, Tami's focus has included advising asset managers, investment advisors, social impact accelerators, and multiple generations of family offices on scaling impact effectively. She is on the Steering Committee for the NEXUS Impact Investing Working Group, advising next gen heirs of some of the world’s largest families on portfolio stewardship. Tami also served as a leader for the launch of the 'Investable Solutions' track for Good Capital Project/SOCAP, and has been involved in the launch and leadership phases of multiple UN-related projects -- including training heads of 23 UNDP Asia & Pacific country teams on impact investing, advising on the launch of UNSIF (a platform raising a series of $100m-$200m blended capital funds), co-curating and emceeing the inaugural TEDxUNPlaza, co-chairing a conference on youth and technology live-streamed globally from the UN General Assembly, and launching the Capital Markets Global Summit in collaboration with UNCTAD, focusing on aligning private sector capital with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Additionally, Tami was brought in by USAID to helm the strategic design phase of a joint venture initiative for USAID, UNICEF and Village Capital in East Africa. At the same time, she served on the curriculum development committee shaping the launch of a global leadership course for the UN Transformational Leadership Network -- for UN headquarters & field staff from across agencies and continents, playing an integral role in creating curricula and facilitating weekly online modules to inspire this generation of leadership to move innovation and impact beyond current frameworks. In the U.S., Tami helped shape the Growing the Impact Economy Summit at Harvard, paving the way for broader regulatory reforms to grow the for-benefit sector nationally.
Always action-focused and inspirational, Tami has had speaking engagements at the World Forum at The Hague, the United Nations, Harvard Business School, Harvard Kennedy School, Oxford University's Saïd Business School, Columbia Business School, the MIT Enterprise Forum, Yale University, the University of Pennsylvania, McKinsey & Company, Bain & Company, Opal's Private Wealth Forum and Investor Consultants Forum, Latinos in Technology, Innovation & Social Media (LATISM), Womensphere, +SocialGood, the World Human Rights Forum Marrakesh, SOCAP, Nikkei's Tokyo AgriTech Summit, NEXUS Asia, NEXUS Global, SEEED Conference and the MaRS Social Finance Forum Toronto, as well as participating in think tanks for Rockefeller Foundation -- on crowdsourcing innovation, Opportunity Collaboration -- on impact investing, Harvard’s Advanced Leadership Initiative -- on decision leadership, and as a regular participant in Ambassador Philip Lader’s Renaissance Weekends.
SPEAKING TOPICS & PAST AFFILIATIONS
Co-Chair | Curator | Master of Ceremonies
Opal Financial Group's Impact Investing Forum*
TEDx: Concordia, DupontCircleED, UNPlaza
Capital Markets Global Leadership Roundtable
at the UN: Aligning Investment Capital with the SDGs
Expert | Thought Leader | Keynote Speaker
Investing for Financial & Impact Success*
Due Diligence & Structuring for Global Scale*
Leveraging Market Forces vs 'Giving'*
Effective use of 'Invest/Divest' Strategies*
An Insider's Look at the SDGs and the Evolution of Multi-Sector Collaborations*
Curriculum Development | Lecturer
SMART™ impact *
at Harvard, Yale, UMich, UPenn and multiple
investment & entrepreneurship conferences*
Transformational Leadership & Resiliency
for the United Nations Transformational
Leadership global course
Steering Committee | Policy & Strategy Group
NEXUS Impact Investing Working Group*
UN SDG Action Campaign
Gerson Lehrman Group*
Board of Directors
Harvard Kennedy School Alumni Board of Dir.*
AIESEC U.S. (Chairman Emeritus, Governance Chair)
Board of Advisors | Senior Advisor
AIESEC Yale University*
IMI Emerging Managers Association
SELA: Blockchain initiative for sustainable Africa
Mentor Capital Network* (Founding Member)
Mentor | Capital Advisor
Harvard Business School Rock Center for Entrep.
Hult Prize (Entrepreneur-in-Residence & Mentor)
M & A Advisors*
"Emerging Leader Award"
"Dealmaker of the Year Award"
Harvard Business School*
"New Venture Competition"
"President's Innovation Challenge"
Mentor Capital Network
"Social Impact Business Plan Competition"
Global Social Venture Competition (GSVC)
Eastern Region Judge
* Current affiliation
Corporate Governance & Systems Influence
With an ability to detect potential issues early on and an aptitude for bringing people together for quick resolution, Tami has been asked to join multiple boards, and to take on responsibilities otherwise reserved for attorneys, including for the multi-million dollar leadership development and employment readiness nonprofit AIESEC U.S., where she was elected Chairman of the Board in 2016 after serving for a year as Chairman of the Governance Committee. In 2018 she was elected by the global alumni base for a 4-year term to the Harvard Kennedy School's Alumni Board where her roles include the Governance Committee and the Executive Committee.
Often tapped to work with accelerator organizations and with individual entrepreneurial CEOs as they evolve from seed stage to Series C and exit rounds, Tami is a founding member of Mentor Capital Network and a Council Member for Gerson Lehrman Group (GLG). She regularly serves as a mentor to entrepreneurs, including having served as a mentor for the Rock Center for Entrepreneurship at Harvard Business School and an Entrepreneur-in-Residence for the Hult Prize, as well as serving as a Capital Advisor for Unreasonable Group's Impact fellows program and an advisor for the UN Office for Partnerships.
Tami has also served annually as a judge for business plan competitions including the prestigious President's Innovation Challenge at Harvard University, the Global Social Venture Competition at Berkeley, the New Venture Competition at Harvard Business School and the Mentor Capital Network's Social Impact Business Plan Competition, as well as mentoring winners on systems thinking to avoid unintended consequences when scaling regionally or globally.
Tami earned her MPA from Harvard's Kennedy School with her Masters concentration in Business & Government Policy and curricula spanning Harvard Kennedy School, Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School. She was elected and served as Vice President of the HKS student government and President of Harvard's university-wide student government, was the Graduate Rep for Harvard's Provost Committee on Computerization and in her second year was the CA to Roger Porter for his Business & Government course, along with rowing crew for both HBS and HKS. She earned her Bachelors in Industrial Relations from the University of Michigan where she was a Taubman Scholar. In between Michigan and Harvard, Tami served on the board of AIESEC International in Europe and completed student internships for a pharmaceutical subsidiary of Procter & Gamble in Italy, the U.S. Council for International Business in NYC and the United Nations in Brazil.