Diversity & Inclusion
Human Rights Activist
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Dr. Derreck Kayongo
Keynote & Workshops
“The Cost of Discrimination & How to Harness the Power of Diversity & Inclusion”
Dr. Derreck Kayongo is a social innovator, entrepreneur, human rights activist and the founder of Global Soap Project, for which he was honored as a 2011 CNN Hero. Kayongo recently served for three years as the CEO of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta, Georgia. Kayongo now travels the world inspiring people and major brands to harness the power of diversity and inclusion to strengthen business, including recent keynotes at Bank of America, Turner, Express Scripts, and Cox family of brands.
Known for his optimistic energy, Kayongo is a joyful, expressive speaker whose stories entertain, educate and inspire audiences of all ages and backgrounds. President Jimmy Carter recently chose Kayongo to interview him as part of the National Archives’ Amending America Initiative.
Derreck Kayongo was born in Kampala, Uganda, just before General Idi Amin Dada, one of history's most notorious dictators took control. Violence quickly spread through the country and civil war erupted. Kayongo eventually immigrated to America to attend university. On his first night in America, he was struck by the sheer quantity of soap provided in his hotel room. This hotel-stay inspired him to create a life-changing international aid organization called Global Soap Project that collects discarded soap from hotels, reprocesses it and distributes it to vulnerable populations worldwide.
This simple idea fights the #1 killers of children in many at-risk communities: hygiene-related diseases. Global Soap has given millions of bars of soap to refugees and people affected by natural disasters in 32 countries. Global Soap recently partnered with Clean the World, together, these organizations have contributed to a 30% reduction in child deaths, globally, since 2009. The city of Atlanta designated May 5 as annual Global Soap Project Day.
Derreck Kayongo’s unique perspective as a successful entrepreneur and social innovator originally from war-torn Uganda is an ideal backdrop from which to explore the value and opportunities inherent in a diverse and inclusive workplace. Kayongo’s keynote and workshops are both inspirational and actionable, leaving audiences feeling united, motivated and prepared to build powerful inclusive teams using his innovative approach.
Derreck Kayongo holds an honorary doctorate from Oglethorpe University and is a graduate of the prestigious Fletcher school of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.