WDI Global Impact Speaker Series Welcomes Gates Foundation Leader

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The WDI Global Impact Speaker Series kicks off for the academic year by exploring the role that good supply chains play in ensuring health products reach their intended recipients in Africa and India, how technology is making a difference and why having a motivated and dedicated staff is critical. The Oct. 4 talk featuring David Sarley, senior program officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, also will highlight how graduating students can make a difference in global public health.

Sarley’s talk, “Primary Health Care Supply Chain Challenges and Opportunities,” will be held at 5 p.m. in Room R2220 at the Ross School of Business. It is free and open to the public.

The WDI Global Impact Speaker Series features thought leaders and practitioners who do innovative work in low- and middle-income countries. They share their experience, provoke thought, and stimulate discussion around the opportunities and challenges of international development.

Over the last five years at the Gates Foundation, Sarley has created and managed investments across multiple delivery teams tasked with strengthening supply chains, and recently joined the Innovation and Strategy team in Vaccine Delivery.  

David Sarley

David Sarley

“David has a deep understanding of the needs, opportunities and challenges that many countries face ensuring that their citizens have access to a reliable supply of lifesaving health commodities,” said Michael Krautmann, senior research associate with WDI’s Healthcare Initiative. “Through his work at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, David is at the forefront of technological and organizational solutions to these challenges, and his talk will be insightful for students, faculty and all those who are interested in improving global access to medicines.”

Sarley has nearly 35 years experience in investment and development in emerging markets. He has worked for 15 years in public health supply chain management, including 10 years with USAID grantee John Snow Inc. (JSI) and five at the Gates Foundation. Prior to JSI, he worked in economics consultancy for 16 years in trade, transport, finance and health economics.  

He was a volunteer with the United Kingdom-based Voluntary Service Overseas and started his career for Ford Motor Co. in inventory management. He has a bachelor’s degree in Econometrics from the University of Hull in England, and a graduate degree from Southampton University. He has lived in four countries and worked in over 80 countries.


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