Ilze Melngailis

Senior Director, Business Council for the UN and Private Sector Engagement

Ilze Melngailis’ career has focused on applying business approaches to international development – accelerating gains in health, gender equality, and poverty alleviation. She designs and develops innovative corporate partnerships at the United Nations Foundation, where she is Senior Director, Business Council for the UN and Private Sector Engagement. She also leads private sector engagement with the UN and companies’ participation in the UN’s historic Sustainable Development Goals. She has contributed thought leadership and created impactful initiatives and programs in over 30 countries through leadership positions at GBC Health where she was Vice President, Partnerships and Impact Initiatives, and prior roles at the USAID-funded ACQUIRE Project at EngenderHealth, International Planned Parenthood Federation, and consulting roles. She has expertise in corporate ‘shared value’ strategies, women’s and girls’ empowerment, reproductive health and family planning, social marketing, and partnering effectively with the private sector to reach global development goals.

She earned her Bachelor’s degree at McGill University and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Yale University School of Management. She is a founding board member of Operation Fistula, and at the start of her career, founded and ran Latvia’s national Association for Family Planning and Sexual Health.