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American Express Commits to Not-for-Profit Leadership Development in IndiaLaunches American Express Leadership Academy in India
NEW DELHI,  October 31, 2011 -- 

American Express today launched the American Express Leadership Academy in India to help develop the country's emerging leaders who are dedicated and poised to be at the helm of the not-for-profit sector. The inaugural class of the American Express Leadership Academy will participate in a five day program created in partnership with Common Purpose.

The Leadership Academy in India will bring together 24 emerging leaders from 12 non-profit organisations supporting causes including child rights, community building, education, and environment. The Academy is part of a broader commitment from the American Express Foundation to work with these and other organisations to develop a broader pool of world-class leaders committed to working in the not-for-profit sector.

The Leadership Academy will focus on building the personal, business and leadership skills needed to run a successful non-profit organisation. American Express executives and special guest speakers participating in the Academy will focus on topics including leadership development, customer service, brand management and marketing.

"The not-for-profit sector in India is playing a pivotal role in shaping and influencing opinions of the country in a positive way. Emerging leaders from the sector need to increasingly understand their responsibilities and have a clear vision for the future," said Julia Middleton, CEO, Common Purpose. "There are limited opportunities for not-for-profit leadership development around the world and in India. This is why the American Express Leadership Academy is a very welcome new development for emerging leaders in this sector."

The 24 emerging leaders were selected from 12 national and local not-for-profit partners. Akanksha Foundation, ASER Centre /PRATHAM, CERE, Dignity Foundation, Hamari Muskaan, MLPC, Naz Foundation, SAATH, SALAAM BAALAK Trust, SEWA, SRIJAN and Udayan Care are among the participants in the first Indian Leadership Academy.

"At American Express, we appreciate the impact that talented leaders have on business, in the community and in society. We are committed to providing current and future non-profit leaders with opportunities to build and hone leadership skills that are critical to the sector. The American Express Leadership Academy is designed in a way to address the special challenges not-for-profit leaders face today, from building coalitions, leading volunteers and to managing limited resources strategically," said Sanjay Rishi, Executive Vice-President and Asia Business Head for Emerging Payments and New Ventures, American Express.

Eminent leaders of renowned not-for-profit organisations will be addressing coaching sessions at the Leadership Academy. Sessions on Leading a Successful Social Enterprise, The Role of Social Media and Leadership in a Changing World would be addressed by the likes of Dr. Rukmini Banerji, Director Programs, Pratham; Geeta Malhotra, Country Director, READ India; Mathew Cherian, CEO, Helpage India; Anshu Gupta, Founder Director, GOONJ and American Express senior leadership. During the sessions the heads of the organisations will act as advisors to the participants and the participants will be working to solve a problem with the help of the advisors.

After a competitive application process, 24 emerging non-profit leaders from across the country were selected for the inaugural Leadership Academy class. Each of the participants hold a manager-level position, is dedicated to a career in the non-profit sector and has built strong momentum in their respective fields. To ensure the non-profit Leadership Academy has a lasting impact and to measure its effectiveness, participants will set goals and action plans during the training, and will have access to follow-up support from Common Purpose in the form of online networking tools, telephone coaching sessions, and periodic review to complete their training.

About American Express
American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Present in India since 1921, American Express provides high quality travel related services to individuals and corporates in India. American Express Card products available in India include the Green and Gold Charge Cards, Green and Gold Credit Cards, Airline Co-brand Cards, the Corporate Charge Card and The Platinum Charge and Credit Card. Learn more at and connect with us on

American Express: Developing New Leaders for Tomorrow
One of American Express' three platforms for its philanthropy is Developing New Leaders for Tomorrow. Under this giving initiative, which recognises the significance of strong leadership in the not-for-profit sector, American Express is making grants focused on training high potential emerging leaders to tackle important issues in the 21st century.

About Common Purpose
Common Purpose is an independent international leadership development organisation. Over the past 21 years, Common Purpose has designed and delivered courses that help people at all stages of their career become more effective leaders in society.

Common Purpose runs courses that give people from the private, public and not-for-profit sector the inspiration, skills and connections to become better leaders both at work and in society. Common Purpose helps people, organisations, cities and regions to succeed, by broadening the horizons of their leaders and developing their ability to work together and lead complex change. &


Vibha Bajaj91 124 4190591vibha.b.bajaj@aexp.comMrinall Dey91

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