Hamdi Ulukaya is the founder, Chairman and CEO of Chobani, LLC, one of the fastest growing food companies in the last decade and a pioneer for the natural food movement.
Raised in a dairy-farming family in a small village in eastern Turkey, Ulukaya launched Chobani in 2007 with the mission and vision of making better food more accessible. In less than five years, Chobani became the No. 1–selling Greek Yogurt brand in the U.S. with more than a billion dollars in annual sales. In 2017, Chobani was named by Fast Company as one of the 10 most innovative companies in the world, and number one in its Food and Social Good categories.
Ulukaya has always made helping people and having a positive impact on communities a priority for Chobani. From the beginning, the company has donated a portion of its profits to charitable causes, many of them in Idaho and New York where its products are made. A champion of reducing income and wealth inequality nationwide, Ulukaya advocated in support of a proposal to increase the minimum wage in New York that ultimately became law. In 2016 Ulukaya announced a groundbreaking profit-sharing program for company’s 2,000 employees. He also took the rare step in manufacturing of instituting a six week, fully paid parental leave program for all of the company’s mothers and fathers.
In 2016, Ulukaya launched the Chobani Food Incubator to mentor and support socially responsible food entrepreneurs and further deliver on the company’s mission to provide better food for more people.
Ulukaya founded the Tent Partnership for Refugees to bring entrepreneurial approaches and creative solutions to help end the global refugee crisis. He also signed the Giving Pledge and committed the majority of his personal wealth to the cause. For these efforts, he was named an Eminent Advocate by the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and received the United Nations Foundation Global Leadership Award, among other recognitions. In 2017, Ulukaya was named one of TIME’s 100 Most Influential People in the World for his work around the refugee crisis and his innovative approach to business. That same year, he was named one of Forbes’ 100 Greatest Living Business Minds.
Ulukaya sits on the board of the International Board of Special Olympics, the Pathfinder Village, and The American Turkish Council. A big fan of independent films and the Turkish soccer team Fenerbahçe., Ulukaya lives in New Berlin, N.Y.
Gideon Maltz is the Executive Director of the Tent Partnership for Refugees.
He previously served as deputy chief of staff to Ambassador Samantha Power at the U.S. mission to the United Nations; director of human rights and multilateral affairs at the U.S. National Security Council; and senior advisor to the Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development. Prior to government service, Gideon worked as an attorney in the international trade practice of Hogan Lovells and as a consultant at McKinsey & Company. He has also served as a Junior Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and a Predoctoral Fellow at Stanford’s Center for Democracy, Development, and Rule of Law.
Gideon has a BA from Yale and a JD from Stanford Law School.
Follow Gideon on Twitter: @GideonMaltz
Scarlet is the Senior Director of Private Sector Partnerships at Tent.
Prior to Tent, Scarlet worked at the Clinton Foundation for nearly eight years. She was the Associate Director of the Commitments Department and head of the Response & Resilience track at the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI). In this role, she advised corporate, philanthropic, government and non-profit leaders responding to natural disasters and humanitarian crises. Before that, Scarlet worked at the Elie Wiesel Foundation, founded by Nobel Laureate Elie Wiesel.
She is a graduate of Trinity College Dublin.
Hélène van Melle
Hélène is the Director of European Partnerships for the Tent Partnership for Refugees.
Prior to joining Tent, she worked for over twenty years at Accenture in Consulting and Global HR roles and was part of the Accenture team that set up the Refugee Talent Hub, accelerating the way to work by connecting companies to refugee talent.
Hélène has a Masters in Business Economics, is married with 3 children, and lives in the Netherlands.
Yaron Schwartz is a Senior Manager for Private Sector Partnerships at Tent.
Prior to joining Tent, Yaron worked at Deloitte in a consulting and public policy role focused on projects related to corruption, youth unemployment and immigration. He also previously worked for a member of the UK Parliament and a public affairs consultancy and served as a blogger at the Huffington Post.
Yaron has a BA in International Studies and History from Yale University and a MSc in International Relations from the London School of Economics, where he was a Fulbright Scholar.
Maia Bix is the Research and Grants Manager at Tent.
Prior to joining Tent, Maia worked at Venture for America, a two-year fellowship program for recent graduates who want to work at a startup and creates jobs in American cities. She has worked at the Malala Fund, the Clinton Foundation, and the International Rescue Committee, tackling challenges pertaining to girls’ education and refugee education, women’s economic participation, and violence against girls and women.
Maia has a BA in Political Science from Barnard College of Columbia University, where she led the establishment of the Ann and Andrew Tisch Scholarship for Refugee Women.