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The Full Cohort of Atlantic Fellows is Announced

The Atlantic Fellows program made a major step forward this month in its efforts to advance fairer, healthier and more inclusive societies with 267 Fellows now participating in seven programs operating across five continents. The Fellows and programs are supported by the Atlantic Institute, which is based at Rhodes House. 

This first full global cohort of changemakers includes advocates, lawyers, artists, business professionals, health practitioners, government officials, academics and researchers.

“The Atlantic Fellows are energetic, diverse, international leaders who are acting on the world’s urgent needs and collaborating to build healthy and equitable societies. The Fellows’ work, individually and as a community, represents our highest aspirations for what our founder Chuck Feeney and The Atlantic Philanthropies set out to achieve over 35 years ago,” said Christopher G. Oechsli, president and CEO of The Atlantic Philanthropies.

The Atlantic Philanthropies has committed more than US $660 million to seed and support the work of the global network of thousands of Atlantic Fellows over the next twenty years. The full list of Fellows, and more information on the programs, can be found here.

Each of the seven Atlantic Fellows programs is focused on solving a distinct 21st-century problem. They include reducing the impact of dementia worldwide; achieving health equity in South Africa, Southeast Asia and the United States; advancing racial equity in the United States and South Africa; improving the well-being of communities in Australia and the Pacific by drawing on the knowledge and expertise of Indigenous people; and addressing global inequalities. 

The 267 Fellows, with diverse and inspiring stories, hail from 48 countries and disciplines. Some Atlantic Fellows and their work include:

  • Tala Al-Rousan, a Jordanian doctor and an Atlantic Fellow for Equity in Brain Health, is examining the causes and connections between stress from war and cases of dementia among refugees in the Middle East.
  • Fredrick Alucheli, an Atlantic Fellow for Social and Economic Equity and Disability Inclusion Advisor at Light for the World, is investigating how unequal access to educational opportunities affects employment of persons with disabilities in Kenya.
  • Faye McMillan, an Atlantic Fellow for Social Equity and an Associate Professor at Charles Sturt University, is developing a mental health app that creates a community of support based on people identified within an individual’s mobile phone contact list.
  • Santi Lapbenjakul, an Atlantic Fellow for Health Equity in Southeast Asia and champion of care for the elderly in Thailand, is collaborating with the government to train caregivers and redirect healthcare resources toward home care.
  • Rukia Lumumba, an Atlantic Fellow for Racial Equity and founder of People’s Advocacy Institute in Jackson, Mississippi, is working to develop a community model centered around co-governance to expand economic opportunity, promote sustainability and build community.
  • Sibongile Mtungwa, an Atlantic Fellow for Health Equity in South Africa, is the director of the Women’s Leadership and Training Programme where she is exploring partnerships and sustainable ways of advancing girls’ health, education and identity as part of their human rights.
  • Christina Rosenthal, an Atlantic Fellow for Health Equity, CEO of Paradigm Dental Center and Founder of The 516 Foundation, is practicing dentistry and connecting under-represented and/or under-resourced youth to mentors and resources needed to become healthcare professionals.

“I really believe that bringing people from a mix of professions together to work on complex problems has the potential to change the world,” said Phaedra Bell, an Atlantic Fellow for Equity in Brain Health at the Global Brain Health Institute, who is working to help young people have more meaningful interactions with those living with dementia. 

The Fellows programs are an intentional effort to bring together mid-career individuals from diverse professions, backgrounds and areas of expertise to learn from one another, find solutions to pressing problems, and achieve demonstrable impact.

“The Atlantic Fellows programs, with support from the Atlantic Institute, give these leaders the experience, resources and networks to accelerate their work,” said Oechsli.

The Fellows programs include:

  • Atlantic Fellows for Equity in Brain Health based at The Global Brain Health Institute at Trinity College Dublin and the University of California, San Francisco
  • Atlantic Fellows for Health Equity in Southeast Asia based at The Equity Initiative at the China Medical Board in Bangkok
  • Atlantic Fellows for Social and Economic Equity based at the International Inequalities Institute at the London School of Economics and Political Science
  • Atlantic Fellows for Health Equity in South Africa based at TEKANO
  • Atlantic Fellows for Social Equity based at The University of Melbourne
  • Atlantic Fellows for Racial Equity based at Columbia University in New York City and the Nelson Mandela Foundation in Johannesburg
  • Atlantic Fellows for Health Equity based at the George Washington University Health Workforce Institute

The Atlantic Philanthropies launched the first Atlantic Fellows Program in 2015 and the seventh Fellows program in 2018, with 267 Fellows participating around the world. The full list of programs and fellows can be found here.

The Atlantic Institute, based at Rhodes Trust in Oxford, England, brings together Atlantic Fellows across all disciplines and borders and provides a lifelong resource for collaboration among all Atlantic Fellows, so they can continue to find solutions for global problems.

About the Atlantic Fellows Program

The Atlantic Fellows Program empowers catalytic communities of emerging leaders to advance fairer, healthier and more inclusive societies. The Atlantic Fellows program is funded by The Atlantic Philanthropies, which have committed over $660 million, alongside other partner organizations and governments, to support the work of the global network of thousands of Atlantic Fellows over the next two decades, and beyond. Learn more at

About the Atlantic Institute

The Atlantic Institute, based at Rhodes House, provides resources and opportunities for the Fellows to connect, learn and work together to amplify their influence and impact. Learn more at

About The Atlantic Philanthropies

Over 35 years, Atlantic has made grants totaling more than $8 billion to advance opportunity, equity and human dignity. After establishing Atlantic in 1982, Chuck Feeney quietly devoted his wealth to the service of humanity. In keeping with Mr. Feeney’s “Giving While Living” big bet philosophy, Atlantic has invested in systemic change to accelerate lasting improvements for people in Australia, Bermuda, Cuba, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, South Africa, the United States and Vietnam. Atlantic committed its final grants in 2016 and will conclude operations by 2020. Learn more at

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