Faizal Karmali

Former Associate Dir, Network Eng & Bellagio Program

Faizal Karmali joined The Rockefeller Foundation in 2013. As associate director, network engagement & Bellagio programs, Faizal led the Foundation’s strategic work in network engagement. This work helped teams build, harness, and diversify the people, organizations, and solutions necessary to catalyze innovation, influence, and sustainability in the Foundation’s work.

Prior to joining The Rockefeller Foundation, Faizal led a growing solar energy company and co-founded an award-winning social enterprise that built software for Canada’s energy sector. His foray into entrepreneurship was preceded by a decade working with the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) and its affiliates in North America, Asia, Europe, and East Africa, including time with the Department of Diplomatic Affairs at the Secretariat of His Highness the Aga Khan. In his time with the AKDN, Faizal was involved in assessing, supporting, and implementing a wide array of investments that spanned sectors including energy, aviation, media, health, and education. Increasingly, his roles involved nurturing C-level and government relationships for the AKDN, making a network mindset essential to driving success. His various roles and studies have afforded him opportunities to live and work in Bangladesh, Afghanistan, France, Uganda, Singapore, Canada, and most recently, New York City.

Faizal holds a bachelor’s degree in environmental engineering from the University of Western Ontario, and two master’s degrees, one in international education from the University of Toronto and the other in business administration from INSEAD.

Authored Content

  • Nov 28 2016
    Blog Post The Calculus for Commitment: The Power of Involving the Private Sector in Social Impact Networks The importance of engaging the private sector in efforts to address social problems is increasingly apparent. Wicked problems defy single-point solutions, and no single organization or sector working in isolation can solve them. This widespread understanding is matched by a growing number of businesses exploring the integration of social impact into their core strategies. “We’re […] Anna Muoio, Faizal Karmali
  • Oct 01 2015
    Blog Post A World Better Connected Than Ever Before... But Is It Actually Better? I spent Sunday at the Social Good Summit, a convening that leverages the world’s attention on New York City—thanks to the imminent UN General Assembly—to speak about the UN Global Goals. The Summit and the goals underscore our collective responsibility to address the challenges confronting us all, regardless of our racial, ethnic, or national identity: poverty, […] Faizal Karmali
  • Aug 06 2015
    Blog Post ENGAGE: Building and Harnessing Networks for Social Impact “Have you heard of ‘X’ organization? They’re doing interesting work that you should know about. You might even want to work together.” Words like these abound between individuals at conferences, at industry events, in email, and, all too often, trapped in the minds of those who see the potential in connecting the dots. Bridging individuals, […] Claudia Juech, Faizal Karmali
  • Nov 13 2014
    Blog Post Innovation: Found in Translation Translation of innovation, particularly in the context of poor and vulnerable people, requires thoughtful consideration and the tolerance for early risk without the promise of financial reward. Because philanthropy can often “take the risks others cannot and will not”, The Rockefeller Foundation celebrates opportunities to translate proven innovations from one setting to address complex challenges […] Faizal Karmali, Rehana Nathoo
  • May 07 2014
    Blog Post Using Twitter to Surface Food Security Solutions Leveraging social media and digital technology to hear from a wide array of voices is part of The Rockefeller Foundation’s approach to enriching its understanding of the dynamic challenges facing the poor and vulnerable. One such challenge is food insecurity, or the burdens of hunger and malnutrition. Policies and programs to address food insecurity have […] Faizal Karmali, James Geneske, Jereme Bivins, Rachel Korberg