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Mamphela Ramphele


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Tomorrow's Leader Nominee 2013
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Mamphela Ramphele

Active Citizen

Currently resides in: Western Cape, South Africa

Born 28-12-1947 in Limpopo South Africa

Dr. Mamphela Ramphele has been a student activist, a medical doctor, a community development activist, a researcher, a university executive, a global public servant and is now an active citizen in both the public and private sectors.

Following the Soweto uprising in 1976, she was detained without trial, released after five months and soon afterwards served with an apartheid banning order.

She studied Medicine at the then University of Natal, has a B Comm degree, a Diploma in Tropical Hygiene, a Diploma in Public Health and a PhD in Social Anthropology.

She went on to become Vice-Chancellor of UCT, then one of four Managing Directors of the World Bank, based in Washington, DC.

Dr Ramphele has served as chairperson of Gold Fields, Circle Capital Ventures (Pty) Limited, Technology Innovation Agency (TIA), as a director of Medi-Clinic Corporation Limited and Remgro Limited and is currently a trustee of the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

She was founder of the Open Society Foundation for South Africa, the Citizens Movement, Indoni Academy and ReimagineSA.

In January 2013, Dr. Ramphele became the Leader of Agang SA, a party for all South Africans which won two seats in the national elections held in May 2014. Post elections Dr Ramphele retired from Party Politics to return to her role as an active citizen.

Dr Ramphele is the author of several books and publications on socio-economic issues in South Africa. She has received numerous national and international awards acknowledging her scholarship and leading role in spearheading projects for disadvantaged people in South Africa and elsewhere.

Web presence

Professional Portfolios

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A Passion for Freedom

in Books

Dreams, betrayal and hope

in Books

Professional details

Current Position(s)

Co-Founer and Global Brand Champion | ReimagineSA
2016 - present

Social Development and Community Services

RiSA is an initiative born of soul searching by a dedicated citizen and idealist
who believes in our potential for greatness as a society. We need to re-dream
the dream that propelled us to our celebrated political settlement and inspired
us to found our society on the foundations of social justice and respect for
human rights.

My experiences over the last two decades have brought me face to face with
how unhealed wounds from our ugly divided past are preventing us from
recognizing our inter-dependence and connectedness as a people. We need to
acknowledge and heal those wounds to achieve an emotional settlement. An
emotional settlement would open our hearts and minds to Ubuntu as the glue
to bind us together to see ourselves in one another as unselfish-conscious South

Previous Position(s)

Founder and Leader | Agang South Africa
2013 - 2014

Government, Public Administration and Defence

Founder of a communal political platform aimed at engaging ordinary South Africans in developing a new political party.

Executive Chairperson | Letsema Circle
2010 - 2012

Social Development and Community Services

Executive Chairperson | Circle Capital Group
2005 - 2009

Accounting, Banking and Finance

Director | Business Partners Limited
Johannesburg | 2005 - 2009

Johannesburg | 2005 - 2007

Accounting, Banking and Finance

Cape Town | 2005 - July 2012

Medical, Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals

Independent Non-Executive Director | REMGRO LTD
2005 - February 2013

Accounting, Banking and Finance

Managing Director | Human Development Network | World Bank Group
2000 - 2004

Accounting, Banking and Finance

Vice-Chancellor | University of Cape Town
Cape Town, South Africa | 1996 - 2000

Academia, Education and Training

Deputy Vice-Chancellor | University of Cape Town
Cape Town, South Africa | 1991 - 1995

Academia, Education and Training

Senior Research Officer | Tenure Social Anthropology | University of Cape Town
1986 - 1991

Academia, Education and Training

Research fellow | University of Cape Town
Cape Town, South Africa | 1986 - 1986

Academia, Education and Training

Founder & Medical Officer in Charge | Tzaneen | Ithuseng Community Health Programme
1978 - 1984

Medical, Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals

Branch Manager | Eastern Cape | Black Community Programmes
1976 - 1977

Social Development and Community Services

Founder & Medical Officer in Charge | King William’s Town | Zanempilo Community Health Centre
1975 - 1977

Medical, Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals

General Medical Experience | Mt. Coke Mission Hospital
King William’s Town, South Africa | 1974 - 1975

Medical, Healthcare and Pharmaceuticals

Vice President | External Affairs | World Bank Group

Accounting, Banking and Finance

Educational history


University of South Africa

Completed 1983

B. Com - Administration

University of Cape Town

Completed 1991

PhD in Philosophy - Social Anthropology

University of the Witwatersrand

Completed 1984

Public Health

University of KwaZulu-Natal

Completed 1972

Bachelor of Medicine

University of the Witwatersrand

Completed 1982

Tropical Health & Hygiene



Medal of Distinction | Barnard College



The Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf)


The Academy of Science of South Africa is the national science academy for that country. It was started in 1996, and encompasses all fields of scientific work.

World Academy of Art and Science


The Academy serves as a forum for reflective scientists, artists, and scholars to discuss the vital problems of humankind independent of political boundaries or limits, whether spiritual or physical -- a forum where these problems can be discussed objectively, scientifically, globally, and free from vested interests or regional attachments, to arrive at solutions that affirm universal human rights and serve the interests of all humanity.

Club of Rome

Full Member

The Club of Rome is a global think tank that deals with a variety of international issues, including the world economic system, climate change, and environmental degradation.

Mo Ibrahim Foundation

Board member

An organisation that supports good governance and great leadership in Africa.


Bunting Institute


Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund


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