Dr. Margo Thomas is a thought leader and catalyst for inclusive economic growth focusing on private sector
development, business ecosystems, entrepreneurship and competitiveness. In her current role of Founder and
President of the Women’s Economic Imperative, Dr. Thomas serves as a catalyst for initiatives aimed at increasing
opportunities for the economic empowerment of disadvantaged and under-represented groups globally.
In August 2021, Dr. Thomas was appointed to Advisory Board of the Center for Global Business at the University of
Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business. She continues to serve on the International Advisory Board of the
Newcastle University Business School.
In September 2019, Dr. Thomas was appointed as a Global Solutions Initiative Fellow to provide thought leadership on
critical issues underpinning the work of the G20. She played a significant role during the 2020 Virtual Global Solutions
Summit in moderating and curating global tables on the social and economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. In
November 2017, Dr. Thomas was appointed as a Fellow at Chatham House, The Royal Institute of International Affairs,
London, in the Global Economy and Finance practice. She has worked on a range of issues, including gender economic
equity, within the G20 space as an active participant in the Think 20 Engagement Group. In 2018, Dr. Thomas was
appointed Co-Chair of the T20 Taskforce on Women’s Economic Equity under the Argentine Presidency. This role was
carried forward under the 2019 Japanese Presidency of the G20. Dr. Thomas is a member of the T20 Task Force on
SDGs, serving as Co-Chair on Women’s Economic Empowerment. Under the 2020 Saudi Arabian Presidency of the G20,
Dr. Thomas is a member of the COVID-19 Response Task Force and the Social Cohesion Task Force.
In April 2016, Dr. Thomas was appointed to lead the independent secretariat of the High-Level Panel on Women’s
Economic Empowerment which was established by the United Nations (UN) Secretary-General with a mandate for one-
year. The Panel successfully concluded its work in March 2017, delivering two flagship reports and a results-oriented
pathway for shifting the needle on women’s economic empowerment globally.
Dr. Thomas, who holds a Ph.D. in Public Policy and Private Sector Development from the University of Manchester,
England, has international expertise in private sector development, investment promotion, trade, and competitiveness.
More recently, Dr. Thomas has worked extensively on women’s economic empowerment and gender equality issues.
Her career in public policy and private sector development spans more than 25 years. During these years, Dr. Thomas
has held several senior leadership positions, at the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation – Advisory Services.
Dr. Thomas advised and provided implementation support to more than 50 developing, transitioning, and post-conflict
governments on the national and subnational levels, while working for the World Bank Group. In leading work on
regulatory reforms to spur inclusive economic growth, Dr. Thomas has designed and implemented national, sub-national, and
regional programs to support comprehensive regulatory reform initiatives and engage key stakeholders – public, private and civil
society, citizens, and beneficiaries to increase impact on the ground. An important aspect of this work included effective
communications with stakeholders, engaging the press and providing training on related concepts and terminology to improve
the quality and accuracy of press coverage. One of her major initiatives in the Western Balkans established a regional
network of policymakers to share knowledge, effect policy change, and promote business environment reforms to
enhance regional and national competitiveness.
During her World Bank tenure, Dr. Thomas served as a Vice-Presidential Fellow responsible for leading Talent
Management Strategic Reform Initiative. In undertaking this corporate assignment, she provided leadership in
addressing one of the critical challenges facing knowledge institutions – attracting and developing the right mix of
talent to deliver results. Leveraging her prior experience in leading large teams in complex and challenging
environments, Dr. Thomas focused on critical talent issues from the business perspective providing thought leadership,
and implementing innovative solutions on talent recruitment, retention, and performance management.