Foundation Board

We have a team of highly-qualified, dedicated individuals who bring a breadth and depth of experience to the Foundation.

Board Member

Jürg Zeltner

Jürg Zeltner became a member of the GEB in February 2009 and is CEO of UBS Wealth Management. Between February 2009 and January 2012 he served as co-CEO of UBS Wealth Management & Swiss Bank. In November 2007, he was appointed as Head of Wealth Management North, East & Central Europe. From 2005 to 2007 he was the CEO of UBS Deutschland, Frankfurt and, prior to that, he held various management positions in the former Wealth Management division of UBS. Between 1987 and 1998 he was with Swiss Bank Corporation in various roles within the Private and Corporate Client division in Berne, New York and Zurich. Mr. Zeltner holds a diploma in business administration from the College of Higher Vocational Education in Berne and is a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School.

Mr. Zeltner is a board member of the German-Swiss Chamber of Commerce and Chairman of the UBS Optimus Foundation Board.

Alex Friedman

Alexander S. Friedman is the Global Chief Investment Officer of UBS Wealth Management and Wealth Management Americas and is the Chair of the UBS Global Investment Committee. In this capacity, Friedman oversees the investment policy and strategy for approximately $1.6 trillion in assets.

Friedman is the former Chief Financial Officer of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and a member of the foundation’s management committee. Friedman joined the foundation following Warren Buffett’s historic gift in late 2006 and served as CFO during a period when the foundation more than doubled in size.

Friedman also managed a private investment vehicle, Asymmetry, served as a senior advisor to Lazard, the international investment firm, and on the Supervisory Board of Actis, the global emerging market private equity firm. He was a White House Fellow in the Clinton Administration and an Assistant to the U.S. Secretary of Defense.

Friedman is a member of the board of trustees of a number of non-profit organizations and has served on the investment committees of multiple endowments. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Friedman holds a JD from Columbia Law School, where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar, an MBA from Columbia Business School, and a BA from Princeton.

Kathryn Shih

Kathryn Shih joined UBS AG in 1987, and was appointed CEO Wealth Management Asia Pacific in 2002. In February 2010, she was appointed Group Managing Director of the firm. Based in Hong Kong, Kathryn provides strategic oversight of the wealth management operations in Asia Pacific as well as spearheading the development of the business in the region.

Before joining UBS AG, she was Assistant Vice President, Consumer Services Group, at Citibank NA, where she managed the sourcing and processing of consumer loans between 1984 and 1986.

In 1978, Kathryn graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Indiana University, US, and in 1980, she obtained a Masters in Business Management from the Asian Institute of Management. In 1999, she completed the Advanced Executive Program at Northwestern University, US. In 2001, she was conferred as Certified Financial Planner from Institute of Financial Planners of Hong Kong.

Christian Wiesendanger

Christian Wiesendanger is Head of Wealth Management Switzerland at UBS AG since October 2010, when he was appointed as Group Managing Director of UBS. Most recently, Mr. Wiesendanger worked for the Swiss bank Credit Suisse, where he was initially responsible for Wealth Management in central Switzerland and later became Head of Wealth Management for Latin America.

Mr. Wiesendanger holds a Master in mathematics and theoretical physics from the University Zurich, where he also obtained a PhD in theoretical physics. After achieving this he added Master of Business Administration at Insead Fontainebleau in France.

Lincoln Chen

Lincoln C. Chen is President of the China Medical Board. Started in 1914, the Board was endowed by John D. Rockefeller as an independent American foundation to advance health in China and Asia by strengthening medical education, research, and policies.

Dr. Chen was the founding director of the Harvard Global Equity Initiative (2001-2006), and in an earlier decade, the Taro Takemi Professor of International Health and Director of the University-wide Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies (1987-1996). In 1997-2001, Dr. Chen served as Executive Vice-President of the Rockefeller Foundation, and in 1973-1987, he represented the Ford Foundation in India and Bangladesh.

In 2008, Dr. Chen assumed the Chair of the Board of BRAC USA, having completed two terms as Chair of the Board of CARE/USA in 2007. He serves as Co-Chair of the Advisory Committee to the FXB Center on Health and Human Rights at Harvard. Dr. Chen also serves on the Board of the Social Science Research Council, the Institute of Metrics and Evaluation (University of Washington), the Public Health Foundation of India, and the UN Fund for International Partnership (counterpart to the UN Foundation). He was the Special Envoy of the WHO Director-General in Human Resources for Health (2004-2007), and the Founding Chair of the Global Health Workforce Alliance (2006-2008).

Dr. Chen is a member of the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the World Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Council on Foreign Relations. He graduated from Princeton University (BA), Harvard Medical School (MD), and the Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health (MPH).

Stefan Germann

Zimbabwe-born Stefan Germann leads World Vision International Global Health Partnerships & Health Research unit based in Geneva, Switzerland.

Stefan has over 15 years experience in child health related development, relief and advocacy work in Africa, working in various health leadership roles with a number of different agencies. His work includes management of a large rural hospital in Matabeleland, Zimbabwe, which included establishing and managing a midwifery training school. He also worked at regional level in East & Southern Africa in the support of an expanded response to children and AIDS.

In 2005 he joined World Vision International’s emergency relief team as the director for the integrated technical sector teams in the Asia Tsunami response which included major health components. Throughout 2010 Stefan played an active role in the development and related consultation process for the UN SG Global Strategy on Women’s and Children’s Health. He holds a number of board and advisory board memberships and currently is the civil society representative on the Advisory Board of the Global Health Program at The Graduate Institute, Geneva, focusing on the role of NGOs in global health diplomacy.

He has been actively involved in PMNCH for a number of years, especially most recently in relation to the UN Secretary General’s Global Strategy on Women’s and Children’s Health, CSO/MNCH-related accountability issues and has worked to second a MNCH policy person from Vision to the Inter-Parliamentary Union to enhance parliamentary support for MNCH in a number of key countries.

For Stefan, engagement in MNCH is not only professional, but driven by his personal experience: he credits the lives of two children and wife to the effective emergency obstetric care received during their deliveries in Zimbabwe.

Theo Sowa

Theo Sowa is Chief Executive Officer of the African Women’s Development Fund. She previously worked as an independent advisor on a wide range of international social development issues. Her earlier work was with children at risk in UK and international settings, leading to an appointment to the Board of the UK National Youth Agency by the then UK Minister for Education..

Theo has worked for many years as an Advisor to Graca Machel and other public sector and civil society leaders on a range of global issues, including women’s rights, child rights, African and international women’s leadership, and strategic advocacy. She has worked with a variety of international multilateral organisations, civil society organisations and national government bodies, including Save the Children Fund and UNICEF. Theo’s work has had a special focus on the promotion and protection of women and children’s rights in armed conflict situations, as well as on women and youth leadership. She has a special interest in strengthening the role and impact of philanthropic activity on social development issues, in Africa and internationally.

An experienced writer, Theo has produced a number of policy reports for NGOs, journal and magazine articles and was also a contributing editor to a book on the Impact of War on Children and the co-author of a book on Groupwork with young people. She is co-editor of a recent UNICEF Innocenti/ Harvard University book on Children and Transitional Justice.

Marcel Tanner

Marcel Tanner obtained a PhD on medical biology from the University of Basel and a MPH from the University of London. He is Director of the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute and Professor of Epidemiology and Medical Parasitology at the University of Basel and at the Federal Institute of Technology. Since 1977, his research ranges from basic research on the cell biology and immunology on malaria, schistosomiasis, trypanosomiasis and filariasis to epidemiological and public health research on risk assessment, vulnerability, health impact and district health planning. His research, teaching and health planning expertise are based on substantial long term experience from working in rural and urban areas in Africa (mainly Tanzania, Chad, Burkina Faso and Côte d’Ivoire) and Asia (China, Thailand, Laos). He was co-investigator and coordinator of the first African malaria vaccine trial in 1992 and participated as co-principal investigator in several major intervention trials on malaria (iron supplementation, intermittent preventive treatment) and schistosomiasis. Besides research the capacity building and North-South partnership was a main interest as reflected in the development of the Ifakara Health Institute in Tanzania. He has published extensively in the many fields (>500 original papers). He also acted and acts as advisor on communicable diseases research and control, health systems strengthening and capacity building in various national and international agencies / bodies and in boards/committees such as e.g. WHO/STAC-TDR, Wellcome Trust, DNDi, NITD, INCLEN-Trust and INEPTH.

Fay D. Twersky

Fay Twersky is Director of the Effective Philanthropy Group at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Twersky has an extensive background in program design, strategy development and evaluation. She served for four years as a Director and member of the leadership team of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, designing and developing their Impact Planning & Improvement division. She was also a founding principal of BTW - Informing Change, a firm that provides strategic consulting to foundations and nonprofit organizations. Before launching BTW, she worked for nine years with two other consulting organizations, Harder+Company Community Research and the Center for Applied Local Research.

Twersky has authored more than 100 articles and reports. Most recently, she has been a contributor to the Stanford Social Innovation Review, the Chronicle of Philanthropy, the Alliance Magazine and was principal author for Measurement and Evaluation in Israel's Third Sector, and A Guide to Actionable Measurement. She also co-edited the book, “New Social Entrepreneurs: The Success, Challenge and Lessons from Nonprofit Enterprise Creation.” She holds two Bachelor’s degrees in Rhetoric and Middle Eastern Studies with high honors from the University of California, Berkeley, and a Master’s degree in City Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.