Anoka Primrose Abeyrathne
Anoka is the Commonwealth Youth Award recipient for Excellence in Development Work 2012/2013 and was featured 3rd on the 25 World’s Most Influential and Powerful Young People list of 2012. The 2010 SAARC Youth Award recipient for outstanding environmental protection and climate change mitigation, Anoka started volunteering and activism for social development and environmental protection at age 14 and has a track record of excellence in projects with positive impacts in development. One of Sri Lanka’s first and youngest World Economic Forum Global Shapers due to her extensive work in the field of development and social entrepreneurship, Anoka is an Ashoka Foundation Youth Venturer, British Council Global Changemaker and Climate Champion.
She is the co-founder of Growin’ Money, a voluntary non-profit for youth to making communities a better place through youth empowerment, capacity building and changing perceptions regarding the environment through interactive workshops and dialogues. Her work revolves on poverty alleviation through economic incentives, providing skills training for better employability such as IT training and basic resume making, eco-tourism guide training, handicrafts making and organic produce making.
Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka
Dr Dayan Jayatilleka was until January 2013, Sri Lanka’s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to France, Portugal and Spain and Permanent Delegate to UNESCO. He was Ambassador/Permanent Representative of Sri Lanka to the United Nations in Geneva (2007-09) and was a vice-president of the UN Human Rights Council. He was appointed Chairman of the Governing body of the International Labour Organization (ILO) in 2007.
He was Minister of Planning and Youth Affairs in the North-East Provincial Council (1988–89).
Dr. Jayatilleka is a political scientist, author and commentator in the media. He received a First Class Honors Degree from the University of Peradeniya, and M.Phil from University of Colombo and a Ph.D. from Griffith University, Brisbane. He was also a Fulbright Scholar in 1982–83. His publications include The Travails of a Democracy: Unfinished War, Protracted Crisis (1995); Fidel's Ethics of Violence: The Moral Dimension of the Political Thought of Fidel Castro (2007).
Dr. Dayan Jayatilleka’s latest book is ‘Long War, Cold Peace: Conflict and Crisis in Sri Lanka’ (Vijitha Yapa Publishers, 2013).
Shanthi Anusha Sachithanandam
Shanthi Anusha Sachithanandam is the Founder member, former Chairperson and presently CEO of Viluthu, Centre for Human Resource Development. Viluthu is an NGO in Sri Lanka that is involved in advocacy and community mobilizing on issues related to good governance.
Shanthi has been involved in working on gender and development issues since the late 1980s. Her experiences range from working at the grass roots supporting institutions that implement community development projects, to participating in the advocacy processes connected to the Committee for Sustainable Development (CSD) at the United Nations in NewYork. She also has extensive experience working for international non government development agencies (Australian OXFAM, Christian Aid UK) and advising donors on policy and programme design guidelines (UNDP, World Bank, AusAID, Netherlands etc.).
Although her professional training was as an architect, she has written and edited 6 publications and read 14 research papers both in Tamil and English on issues related to gender and development. Shanthi continues to write numerous articles for newspapers and magazines on many issues of interest in both Tamil and English. she has also performed in both stage and street theatre, and hosted TV talk shows. An avid Carnatic singer, South Indian classical music remains one of her strong passions.
He is a LL.B (Hons) graduate from the University of London and a Law Apprentice under Senior Counsel Mr. Gomin Dayasri after completing the Attorney-at-Law examinations at Sri Lanka Law College and also a final-year student of the prestigious University of Colombo reading for his Bachelor Of Science Degree (BSc) in the Physical Science stream. He is the youngest attorney-at-law at present in Sri Lanka.
He is the Founder of Empower Lanka (www.empowerlanka.org); a youth led NGO that provides Microgrid power systems based on renewable (solar, wind, hydro) power to rural villages which have no access to electricity through international and local donations. The “Empower Lanka Model” makes it possible for the Corporate Sector to “Sponsor Villages” to install the power system and issues Ministry Of Environment Certified Carbon Credits to the sponsors. So far over 100 families in 6 villages have been given access to electricity. Empower Lanka was awarded the renowned Energy Globe Award for Sustainability in 2013
He is a public speaker on youth activism, entrepreneurship and project management addressing audiences such as the American Center in Colombo, the public diplomacy office of the American Embassy as well as the British Council. He was the Sri Lankan Delegate to the Shanghai International Youth Forum On Climate Finance and was the first Youth delegate from Sri Lanka to attend the Commission for Social Development (CSocD) assembly at the United Nations in February 2012. He was also the Sri Lankan delegate to the Looking Beyond Disaster UNESCO Youth Forum 2011 held in Christchurch New Zealand.
He is an International Climate Champion and Global Changemaker of the British Council and was the Co-Creator of “YOUTH is the Word- World Record”.
Asela De Silva
He is a day dreamer by profession. He currently works at JWT Colombo as a Senior writer. He has represented Sri Lanka at Young Spikes, an advertising competition held during Spikes Singapore and Young Lotus, a competition held at Adfest Thailand, asia's largest advertising festival. He was the first Sri Lankan and one of five selected from over a 100 countries to receive a scholarship to attend the Cannes Lions Young Creative Academy in France. He was won several awards in Sri Lanka, for creativity as well as effectiveness.
Asela began his career in business development. He then discovered his true passion was creating ideas that people can engage in. He has handled a range of Sri Lanka's most popular brands such as Sunsilk, Comfort, HSBC, Dialog, Munchee, Asian Paints, Reborn, Tigo, Etisalat, Taj Hotels, Cotton Collection and much more.
MB Imran (Imran Basheer), a multi talented individual who has made a career of Bollywood Dancing, Photography and Consultancy. Charismatic, lively and tuned on 24/7. Having come a long way in a very short span of time, this 27 year old formed a dance troupe “ImzyS” and has started a dance revolution in Bollywood dancing in Colombo, and now taking it overseas. With a huge following of young and old students, Imran is definitely putting a swing in things in around the globe. Never short of confidence and talent, Imran is more than a dynamic powerhouse;a great teacher and has the ability to envision great things. He has reached the pinnacle of his Dance and Photography career with an unrelenting thirst for knowledge and perfection.