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Dr. Frances Hesselbein

Founding President,

Leader to Leader Institute

“ When Drucker came to speak at our board meeting, I brought the entire national board and 100 national staff members. He told them, ‘ You do not see yourselves life-size. You do not appreciate the significance of the work you do, for we live in a society that pretends to care about its children, and it does not. And for a little while you give a little girl a chance to be a girl in a society that forces her to grow up all too soon.’ What we all realized at that moment was that the work we did in the social sector was as important as business or government; we were not simply junior members of a society.”

-Dr. Frances Hesselbein


Dr. Frances Hesselbein was appointed by Drucker as the chairman of the Leader to Leader Institute and served as its founding president for 26 years.


She has served on many non-profit and private sector corporate boards, including the Board of the Mutual of America Life Insurance Company, the Veterans of Corporation Advisory Board, the Chairman of the National Board of Directors for the Volunteers of America, the Boards of the Centre for Social Initiative at the Harvard Business School and the Hauser Center for Non-profit Management at the Kennedy School.


 She is editor-in-chief of the award-winning quarterly journal Leader to Leader, and has co-edited 24 books in 28 languages, including the Drucker Academy's three-volume Future Series.


 Dr. Hesselbein is the recipient of twenty honorary doctoral degress, some of the most significant ones include the John F. Kennedy Memorial Fellowship by Fulbright New Zealand; the Henry A. Rosso Medal for Lifetime Achievement, etc.


 Most notably she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the United States of America's highest civilian honour, in 1998. The award recognized her leadership as CEO of Girl Scouts of the U.S.A. from 1976 to 1990 and her role as the founding president of the Drucker Foundation.


Her contributions were also recognized by former President Bush, who appointed her to two Presidential Commissions on National and Community Service.

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