mHealth Alliance Partnership Board Names Karl Brown Chairman

Rockefeller Foundation Director To Succeed Tom Wheeler In Role

Washington, D.C.

December 3, 2012


Alexis Krieg

The mHealth Alliance today named Karl Brown, Associate Director at the Rockefeller Foundation, the new Chairman of the Partnership Board, effective February 1, 2013.  Outgoing Chairman Tom Wheeler announced the transition, through which he will become chairman emeritus, at a meeting of the mHealth Alliance Partnership Board.

“It has been a privilege and an honor to have been able to work with the mHealth Alliance during its first three years,” outgoing Chairman Tom Wheeler said.  Wheeler, who is Managing Partner of Core Capital, joined the mHealth Alliance as chairman in 2009.

“I am pleased to announce that my colleague Karl Brown, a Partnership Board member since the founding of the mHealth Alliance, and indeed one of the key catalysts in its creation, will be taking my position. He is a visionary and an able leader who can see the Alliance through this next chapter of its development,” Wheeler said.

Kathy Calvin, CEO of the United Nations Foundation, which hosts the mHealth Alliance, and a member of the board, welcomed the transition saying: “We are indebted to Tom Wheeler for his insight, leadership and continuing commitment to the mHealth Alliance. We welcome Karl Brown to this new role, which is a natural continuation of the vision and strong support he has provided to the Alliance from its inception.

“The mHealth Alliance has taken important strides over the last year to enhance the enabling environment by producing landscape analyses that map critical gaps and create frameworks for collaborative action, by mobilizing catalytic funding, and by brokering action-oriented partnerships.  This work, together with that of the two mHealth initiatives that the Alliance houses, is powering up the ecosystem and setting the stage to move mHealth to scale in 2013,” she added.

Incoming Chairman Karl Brown said: “I want to join the mHealth Alliance and my fellow members of the Partnership Board in thanking Tom Wheeler for three excellent years of service.  Three years ago, when the Rockefeller Foundation helped create the mHealth Alliance, we had a vision that it would become a leading authority in the fast growing mHealth sector.  I am honored to continue Tom’s vision in leading the Alliance into a new stage of activities focused on creating an enabling environment for mHealth projects and programs to scale.”

mHealth Alliance Partnership Board Members include:

  • Tom Wheeler, Chairman, Managing  Partner, Core Capital
  • Karl Brown, Associate Director of Applied Technology, Rockefeller Foundation
  • Kathy Calvin, CEO, United Nations Foundation
  • Andrew Dunnett, Director, The Vodafone Foundation
  • Haitham El-noush, Senior Advisor, Department of Global Health, Education and Research, Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad)
  • Lawrence Yanovitch, President, GSMA Foundation
  • Martha Newsome, Global Director, Health & Nutrition; Water, Sanitation & Hygiene, World Vision
  • Tom Wheeler, Managing Partner, Core Capital, Chairman Emeritus
  • Gabi Zedlymayer, Vice President, Office of Global Social Innovation, HP

Alternate Board members include Paul Ellingstad, Director, Global Health, HP and Rick Parnell, Chief Operating Officer, United Nations Foundation.

The mHealth Alliance is a global catalyst for unlocking the potential of mobile technologies to support health information and service delivery, with a focus on low- and middle-income countries.

Its Founding Partners, each of which is represented on the Partnership Board, are: the Rockefeller Foundation, GSMA, HP, the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation, the United Nations Foundation, and the Vodafone Foundation.

The Alliance also works with Strategic Partners who support key areas of mHealth Alliance activity. These include Booz Allen Hamilton, Johnson & Johnson, TechChange, the Thompson Reuters Foundation, Pfizer and USAID.

Since opening for institutional membership in February 2012 the mHealth Alliance has welcomed 144 member organizations from around the globe, who represent private (44%) and non-profit (42%) sectors, as well as government (3%) and academia (11%). A full list of member organizations can be found online at

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Note to editors:  Watch a video of a conversation between Tom Wheeler and UN Foundation Founder and Chairman Ted Turner at the 2010 mHealth Summit here:

About the mHealth Alliance
The mHealth Alliance champions the use of mobile technologies to improve health throughout the world. Working with diverse partners to integrate mHealth into multiple sectors, the Alliance serves as a convener for the mHealth community to overcome common challenges by sharing tools, knowledge, experience, and lessons learned. The mHealth Alliance advocates for more and better quality research and evaluation to advance the evidence base;  seeks to build capacity among health and industry decision-makers, managers, and practitioners; promotes sustainable business models; and supports systems integration by advocating for standardization and interoperability of mHealth platforms.  The mHealth Alliance also hosts (HUB), a global online community for resource sharing and collaborative solution generation. Hosted by the United Nations Foundation, and founded by the Rockefeller Foundation, Vodafone Foundation, and UN Foundation, the Alliance now also includes PEPFAR, HP, the GSM Association, and NORAD among its founding partners. For more information, visit

About the Rockefeller Foundation
The Rockefeller Foundation aims to achieve equitable growth by expanding opportunity for more people in more places worldwide, and to build resilience by helping them prepare for, withstand, and emerge stronger from acute shocks and chronic stresses. Throughout its 100 year history, the Rockefeller Foundation has enhanced the impact of innovative thinkers and actors working to change the world by providing the resources, networks, convening power, and technologies to move them from idea to impact. In today’s dynamic and interconnected world, The Rockefeller Foundation has a unique ability to address the emerging challenges facing humankind through innovation, intervention and influence in order to shape agendas and inform decision making.  For more information, please visit