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President Obama Meets in Ottawa with International Young Leaders Participating in the Open Government Partnership Global Summit

May 31, 2019 at 5:27 PM CDT

OTTAWA, CANADA — Today in Ottawa, President Obama met with nine emerging leaders from around the world to learn about how they are approaching important issues in their communities, including transparency, inclusivity, and accountability, and to discuss how the Obama Foundation can support young leaders and amplify their impact.

The roundtable, which the Obama Foundation held on the margins of the Open Government Partnership (OGP) Global Summit 2019, is part of a series of roundtables with young leaders the Foundation has conducted over the past two years to better understand what resources these leaders need to advance and scale their work. The participants in today’s roundtable were identified with the assistance of OGP and represented eight countries: Afghanistan, Argentina, Canada, Estonia, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom. These leaders work to promote open government, fight corruption, empower citizens, and harness new technologies to strengthen governance.

President Obama helped launch OGP in 2011 when the United States was one of eight founding governments to endorse the Open Government Declaration and develop an action plan to make their governments more open and accountable.

“The Obama Foundation’s goal is to inspire, empower, and connect the next generation of leaders to change their communities,” said Bernadette Meehan, the Obama Foundation’s Chief International Officer. “Today’s roundtable was a great opportunity to hear from the inspiring leaders present in Ottawa for the Open Government Partnership Global Summit about the challenges they face and the opportunities they see to model ethical and community-based leadership. As we continue to expand our global programming, we want to ensure that we are always in dialogue with young leaders about the ways in which the Foundation can best support their work.”

President Obama and the Obama Foundation previously hosted roundtables and town halls in Colombia, Germany, the Netherlands, South Africa, New Zealand, Singapore, India, Brazil, and Indonesia to learn more about the work of rising community leaders and discuss how the Foundation can support young leaders globally. As a result of these discussions, the Foundation has implemented a series of civic engagement programs that support young leaders around the world. These programs include the Obama Foundation Scholars Program, the Obama Foundation Fellowship, and the Leaders: Africa and Leaders: Asia programs.

You can read more about today’s event, including bios of the participants here.

Photos of the event may be found here (Opens in a new tab).


Contact: Laura Lucas Magnuson, [email protected] (Opens in a new tab)