Kristine Pearson is the founding CEO of two award-winning social enterprises – the non-profit Lifeline Energy which distributes power independent MP3 players and radios for mass education projects and emergency response; and the for-profit Lifeline Technologies, the company that manufactures them. Since its inception in 1999, more than 650,000 products have been distributed reaching an estimated 25 million listeners – primarily women and girls in sub-Saharan Africa.
Previously, Pearson held a senior executive position with a South African banking group, and prior to that was a consultant specializing in the development of senior level women in South Africa during its transition from apartheid. Pearson is a long-serving Schwab Foundation Fellow of the World Economic Forum. She was named by TIME magazine as a Hero of the Environment; served for 8 years on the Women’s Leadership Board of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government; was selected as a Lionesses of Africa; is a lifetime fellow of the World Technology Network; the Stockholm Cities Award received from the King of Sweden; and received the 2005 James C. Morgan Global Humanitarian Award and was the first recipient of the Tech Museum of Innovation Award in 2001 both in Silicon Valley. She recently received a lifetime achievement award from the African Women’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum.
A graduate of the University of California, Pearson has attended Executive Education at Harvard Kennedy and Business Schools, the University of the Witwatersrand and the Global Social Benefit Incubator at Santa Clara University. She has travelled to more than 100 countries including 34 in Africa. A dual national, she has lived in South Africa since 1989, where Lifeline Energy is based.