Janah, Leila

Janah, Leila
Founder & CEO
Sama and Laxmi


Leila Janah is the Founder and CEO of Sama and Laxmi, two companies recently highlighted on Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies list that share a common social mission to end global poverty by giving work to people in need. She is also the co-author of America's Moment: Creating Opportunity in the Connected Age, a book by Rework America: A Markle Initiative.

Prior, Leila was a Visiting Scholar with the Stanford Program on Global Justice and Australian National University’s Center for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics. She was a founding Director of Incentives for Global Health, and a management consultant at Katzenbach Partners (now Booz & Co.).


Leila is a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum, a Director of CARE USA, a 2012 TechFellow, recipient of the inaugural Club de Madrid Young Leadership Award, and the youngest person to win a Heinz Award in 2014. She also received the Secretary’s Innovation Award for the Empowerment of Women and Girls from Hillary Clinton in 2012.

Leila was included as one of The New York Times T Magazine’s “Five Visionary Tech Entrepreneurs Who Are Changing the World” in 2015. She was also named a “Rising Star” on Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list in 2011, one of Fast Company’s “Most Creative People in Business” in 2011, and was profiled as one of Fortune’s “Most Promising Entrepreneurs” in 2013.

Leila received a BA from Harvard in African Development Studies and lives in San Francisco.