How Can Businesses Respond to the Refugee Crisis?

Learn how businesses can accelerate solutions to the refugee crises.

Event Details


swissnex San Francisco
Pier 17, Suite 800, San Francisco, California 94111 United States


February 09, 2017 from 8:30 am to 10:30 am



How can we track food to ensure it gets to refugee camps? How can we best connect talent from war-torn countries to businesses in receiving countries? Is investing in businesses started by refugees the best way to restore disrupted lives? Join us to learn from Cisco, LinkedIn, Airbnb and many more, on how businesses can accelerate solutions to the refugee crises and share the challenges you face.


8:30am – Doors open

9:00am – Introduction by Philippe Sion, from FSG, on the role of business in the refugee crisis

9:10am – Remarks from discussion leaders

9:50am – Plenary conversation with discussion leaders

10:30am – Networking


Kellie Bentz

Kellie Bentz joined Airbnb in 2015 to lead their Global Disaster Response and Relief efforts. In this role, Kellie works across the enterprise to respond to crises and disasters that impact the Airbnb community that includes over 2 million hosts in 34,000 cities around the world. Since starting with Airbnb, Kellie has led responses ranging from wildfires in Canada to the Orlando shooting to the global refugee crisis. Kellie started her career in the disaster space with HandsOn Network in 2005 in response to Hurricane Katrina.

Kellie previously managed Target’s Global Crisis program, where she led the development of Target’s crisis response plan, Target’s emergency management partnerships and the company’s enterprise-wide crisis management team. Kellie serves in voluntary leadership roles with ResCon resilience conference, and previously has held advisory roles with the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster, CDC, Sustainable Dialogue Campus Network, Social Entrepreneurs New Orleans (now Propeller), and Mayor Landrieu’s social innovation advisory council.

Maryam Ghofraniha 


Maryam Ghofraniha is the Head of Global Partnerships for LinkedIn’s social impact group, LinkedIn For Good (LIFG). She manages LIFG’s relationships with nonprofits, private entities, and government partners across various initiatives with a focus on the refugee and youth employment sectors. Maryam leads LinkedIn’s Welcome Talent program, working to connect refugees to economic opportunity around the world. Prior to LinkedIn, Maryam led private-public partnerships for Google’s Social Impact group in emerging markets where she launched products that leveraged Google’s technology in the disaster response and environmental sustainability sectors. She co-founded PacHope, a nonprofit aimed at supporting the local San Francisco homeless community and serves on the board of Oasis for Girls, a nonprofit advocating for women and girls from under-resourced communities in San Francisco.

Eduardo Martinez

Eduardo Martinez has been Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer of United Parcel Service, Inc. since 2015. As Director of Philanthropy and Community Relations for The UPS Foundation, he is responsible for the operations and management of its global philanthropic, employee engagement and corporate relations programs.

In addition to his corporate responsibilities, Martinez served as Chairperson of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Humanitarian Response. He serves on the WEF’s “Managing the Risk and Impact of Future Epidemics” Steering Committee, and the UN Global Logistics Cluster’s Logistics Emergency Team Steering Council. He represents UPS on the Corporate Board of Advisors for the National Council of La Raza and as Executive Advisor Representative to to the Points of Light Institutes’ Service Council. 

Carolyn Miles


Carolyn Miles is President & Chief Executive Officer of Save the Children, an organization that gives children in the United States and around the world a healthy start, the opportunity to learn, and protection from harm. The global Save the Children movement currently serves over 185 million children in the US and in more than 120 countries. As a global organization, Save the Children has committed to driving down the numbers of preventable deaths of children under 5, ensuring every child gets a high-quality basic education and protecting all children from harm.

Miles joined the organization in 1998, was COO from 2004-2011, and became President and CEO in September 2011. Under her senior leadership, the organization has more than doubled the number of children it reaches with nutrition, health, education and other programs. Resources were just under $700m in 2016. Miles’ signature issues include hunger, learning outcomes, and ending preventable child deaths.

Kathy Mulvany

As Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Kathy Mulvany helps steward Cisco’s corporate social responsibility (CSR) vision of accelerating global problem solving to positively impact people, society and the planet in a connected world. As the head of Operations she promotes scalable, replicable and sustainable CSR impact by delivering improved productivity and operational excellence across Corporate Affairs and the integration of CSR into Cisco’s business functions.

Programs supported include Veterans, as well as Cisco Networking Academy, one of the largest education programs in the world, providing ICT skills education to more than 1 million students annually in over 170 countries. Prior to her current role, Kathy oversaw Public Benefit Investment (PBI) and the Cisco Foundation, providing grants to non-profit partners focused on critical human needs, education and economic empowerment.

Philippe Sion

The son of two refugees, Philippe Sion has over 12 years of consulting experience serving foundations, corporations, and nonprofits around the world. As Managing Director, he leads FSG’s relationship with several very large Fortune 100 corporations in transforming their corporate philanthropy and CSR approaches towards greater impact. In this context, Philippe dedicates part of his time to engage with companies around accelerating solutions to the refugee crisis.

Prior to FSG, Philippe worked for the Bridgespan Group and McKinsey & Company, where he was a leader in the global economic development group and the public / social sector practice.

Before becoming a strategy consultant in 2004, Philippe was an Associate Director at the World Economic Forum (WEF), organizing the economic and finance discussions of the organization’s flagship annual meeting of Davos. Philippe holds a M.Sc. in Financial Economics from the University of London (SOAS) and a B.A in International Relations from the University of Geneva, his hometown.


Listen to a recording of this event online.

Photo: Muzoon Almellehan, a young Syrian refugee recently resettled in Newcastle, United Kingdom, speaks to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon at a high-level civil society event of the UN Summit for Refugees and Migrants in New York on September 19, 2016. UN Photo/Rick Bajornas.

Event Photos