Gretchen Wallace (Activist/Change Agent/Author/Filmmaker)
Categories // Profiles & Bios
Gretchen Steidle Wallace's inspiration for her work with women in developing countries first stirred in her as a child when her military family was transferred to the Philippines, where she discovered the difficulties of poverty.
She graduated in 1996 with BA in foreign affairs from the University of Virginia, where she attended as a Jefferson Scholar. From 1996-1999 she worked in international project finance for PMD International, Inc. a boutique investment banking firm specializing in infrastructure development in poor countries.
She returned for her MBA (2001) at the Tuck School at Dartmouth College, where she helped to found Tuck's Allwin Initiative for Corporate Citizenship. After Tuck, she joined Ashoka: Innovators for the Public, an international non-profit organization advancing the profession of social entrepreneurship.
She was responsible for leading the launch of an incubator for social entrepreneurs and was invited to direct Ashoka's sister organization, Youth Venture.
In 2004, Gretchen established and now leads Global Grassroots. Gretchen is a producer of the Emmy-nominated documentary film, The Devil Came on Horseback, about her brother's tenure as a military observer in Darfur, Sudan, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2007.
She is also co-author of her brother's memoirs, titled The Devil Came on Horseback: Bearing Witness to the Genocide in Darfur, published by PublicAffairs in 2007. That same year, Gretchen was honored by World Business Magazine and Shell as one of the top International 35 Women Under 35.
In 2010 she was honored as a CNN Hero in Haiti for her work providing support for survivors of the earthquake, and was also recently nominated for a national CNN Hero Award. Gretchen is a trained practitioner of the alternative healing modality, Integrative Breathwork.
Gretchen Wallace on Global Grassroots