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Advancing Equity and Quality in Latin American Education
LUNCHEON 11:30 a.m.; LECTURE 12:00 p.m.

Vicky Colbert has been awarded the sixth annual Henry R. Kravis Prize in Leadership. The Kravis Prize, which carries a $250,000 award designated to the recipient organization, recognizes extraordinary leadership in the nonprofit sector. Ms. Colbert will be presented with The Kravis Prize at a ceremony on March 22 in New York City.

Ms. Colbert founded the nonprofit organization Nueva Foundation, which aims to improve the quality of education in low-income schools across the globe. Since its inception, the organization’s innovative educational model has reached more than five million children in Latin America and has influenced education models in Africa and Asia.
“Vicky Colbert is a true pioneer in education, and her commitment in Latin America is inspiring,” said Henry Kravis. “She has taken her experiences as UNICEF’s regional adviser for education in the Americas and Colombia’s vice minister of education and created an organization that affects change not only in her home country, but globally.”

Founded in 1987, the internationally recognized Escuela Nueva Foundation works to alleviate inequality and poverty through a collaborative learning educational program in Ms. Colbert’s native Colombia. The program provides effective teacher training, improves curriculum and fosters classroom environments that are engaging and compelling to students. The Escuela Nueva model moves away from traditional “teacher-centered” environments, which often emphasize rote memorization directed by the teacher, and instead encourages “child-centered” environments that fully engage students and allow them to learn at their own pace.
“I have always known that low quality education leads to an unqualified labor force, inequality and poverty. It is this injustice and inequity that led me to rethink education and craft a solution to improve its quality and effectiveness. At Escuela Nueva Foundation, we work to establish schools as the basic unit of change, nurturing a culture of peace and citizenship; allowing boys and girls to learn to learn and participate, and empowering them and their communities,” explained Vicky Colbert.
“Every year we seek nonprofits that achieve a far-reaching, tangible impact, and Ms. Colbert not only has improved the lives of more than five million children in Latin America, she also has created a successful and compelling education model whose cost-effectiveness is particularly relevant for low income schools,” said Marie-Josée Kravis.
Established in 2006, The Henry R. Kravis Prize in Leadership recognizes and celebrates extraordinary accomplishment and bold leadership in the nonprofit sector. The Kravis Prize is presented and administered by Claremont McKenna College and Marie-Josée Kravis and Henry Kravis. Mrs. Kravis, an economist, is a senior fellow of the Hudson Institute; Mr. Kravis, founding partner, co-chairman and co-CEO of Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., is an alumnus and trustee of Claremont McKenna College.

Past recipients of The Kravis Prize are: Roy Prosterman (2006), founder of the Rural Development Institute; Fazle Abed (2007), founder of BRAC; the Forum for African Women Educationalists (FAWE) (2008); Dr. Sakena Yacoobi (2009), founder of the Afghan Institute of Learning; and Pratham (2010), India’s largest nonprofit dedicated to improving the reading, writing, and basic arithmetic skills of children ages six through 14.

To learn more about The Kravis Prize, please visit