Who we are
A global digital inclusion network
Founded in 1995, pioneer of the digital inclusion movement in Latin America, CDI (Center for Digital Inclusion) is one of the leading social enterprises in the world with a unique socio-educational approach. CDI Founder and Ashoka Fellow Rodrigo Baggio and our work at CDI have been recognized with more than 60 international awards. Today, we are a network of 780 Digital Inclusion Sites throughout Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, Spain, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay and Venezuela – monitored and coordinated by our 23 regional offices.
In addition to low-income communities, our schools are also present in indigenous communities, psychiatric clinics, hospitals for the mentally and physically disabled, as well as youth & adult detention facilities. CDI is an international NGO with US 501c3 status, headquartered in Rio de Janeiro. CDI has operations in the US, Spain, UK and and Latin America.
In addition to low-income communities, our schools are also present in indigenous communities, psychiatric clinics, hospitals for the mentally and physically disabled, as well as youth & adult detention facilities. CDI is an international NGO with US 501c3 status, headquartered in Rio de Janeiro. CDI has operations in the US, Spain, UK and and Latin America. With the support of James Wolfensohn, former President of the World Bank and the Wolfensohn Institute, CDI is in the process of expanding to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, to be followed by India and other parts of Africa.
♦ President of the Board | Marcello Hallake
Marcello Hallake is a partner with the law firm of Thompson & Knight in New York. His practice focuses on cross-border mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures and financings globally and particularly with Brazil and Latin America.
Born in Rio de Janeiro, Marcello grew up in Belgium where he graduated in law and in public and international affairs from Louvain University, prior to receiving an LL.M. degree from Georgetown University.
Marcello has been a founding member of the board of CDI International and its president since its formation in 2004. Marcello was also a co-founder of Brazil Foundation and is a member of its board, as well as of various other not-for profit organizations such as the IDB’s Inter-American Culture and Development Foundation, Brazil’s AlfaSol and Geneva Imitative North America. He is a frequent speaker at international conferences on legal and international public affairs matters.
♦ Founder, Executive Director | RODRIGO BAGGIO
Rodrigo Baggio is one of the world´s most recognized and respected social entrepreneurs. Pioneer of digital inclusion in Latin America, in 1995 he founded CDI, (Center for Digital Inclusion) the first non-profit organization to fight the digital divide in the region. Baggio is a fellow of all four global renowned organizations to support social entrepreneurship: Avina, Ashoka, the Schwab Foundation, and the Skoll Foundation. In 2003, he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters by DePaul University in Chicago.
Baggio is recognized nationally and internationally for his pioneering projects and vision. The World Economic Forum recognized Baggio as one the “100 Global Leaders for Tomorrow” and Time named him as one of the leaders of Latin America that will make a difference in the third millennium, selecting him for their “Local Heroes” campaign. In 2006 he was selected by CNN, Time and Fortune as one of the “Principal Voices” in economic development alongside Nobel Peace Prize winner, Muhammad Yunus. Baggio has received a Certificate of Recognition from the Clinton Global Initiative and was recently invited to join the Strategy Council of the UN’s new Global Alliance for ICT and Development. He and CDI have won more than 60 national and international awards from prominent organizations including Unicef, Unesco, the Technology Museum, Time, Fortune, CNN and the World Economic Forum.
His pursuit of social change began at 12 years of age, driven by his two interests: volunteer work with children living on the streets of Rio de Janeiro, and computers, which became his choice of profession. Self taught, he started a technology consulting firm in 1990 and taught computer classes in Brazilian schools. He also worked as a specialist in Artificial Intelligence (Accenture), and as a manager of the Reinventing Education program (IBM Brasil).
Feeling unfulfilled and stressed by the distractions of his career, at 26 Baggio followed his interest in technology back to the communities-in-need with whom he had worked as a child. His idea was to achieve greater social inclusion by achieving more digital inclusion. He founded “Informática para Todos,” Brazil’s first campaign for donated computers and shortly thereafter, in 1995, opened the first Information Technology and Citizens Rights School (ITCRS) in Dona Marta, a favela in Rio De Janeiro. He subsequently founded CDI to aid in the administration and funding of the school.
In the 18 years since, Baggio has led CDI´s global expansion with operations now in 12 countries and 780 CDI Community Centers throughout Latin America and Europe.
♦ Marcel Fukayama – CEO
Majored in Business Administration (FIAP) with a Masters in Business Administration at Escola Superior de Propaganda e Marketing (ESPM) and extension in Global Marketing Management at University of California. Involved with internet cafes since 2001 when, at age 17, started up his own business. Co-founded three associations for internet cafes in Brazil working with policy makers and market leaders and developed the very first digital inclusion initiative in internet cafes in the country.
Marcel is also the LIVESTRONG Foundation – Brazil leader and he is supposed to engage friends, families and community members in collective action to make cancer a priority working within my local communities to raise awareness, reduce stigma and generate funding for the cancer fight.
In 2009, as project and operations manager, worked for CDI developing innovative projects for partners such as Coca-Cola, Casas Bahia and SEBRAE. Co-founded CDI Lan, the first social business initiative of CDI, with the mission of providing access to innovative solutions that transform lives of low-income communities through a network of 6,500 affiliated Internet cafes, with strategic focus on education and financial inclusion.
In 2012, CDI Lan was recognized by New Ventures Mexico as one of the best social enterprises in Latin America and was certified as the first Brazilian B-Corporation, group of enterprises committed to use the power of core-business to address solutions for social and environmental challenges. Marcel is CEO of CDI Global since April, 2013 and he believes that technology is a powerful resource that can be used to alleviate poverty and empower people to rebuild communities and make the World a better place.
♦ Michele Hunt
Michele is internationally known for her work as a change catalyst and “thinking partner” to leaders of organizations and communities on leadership development, organizational transformation, and organizational effectiveness. She works with leaders and their teams to help transform their organizations to higher levels of participation, teamwork and performance. Her work is rooted in the principles of shared vision, values, alignment and continuous learning.
Michele launched her firm in 1995. Her customers have included leadership teams of: IBM, Motorola, Swiss Reinsurance Company, Popular Inc., (Banco Popular Puerto Rico, Banco Popular North America), Bright China Management Institute, Banco Do Brasil, BHP of Australia, NASA, The U.S. Veterans Administration, The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, The U.S. National Park Service, The US Department of Education, Junior Achievement of New York, World Vision International, The Episcopal Divinity School at Harvard and the leadership team of the Chicago Public Schools. Her work also includes communities. In 1998 Michele partnered with Aruba’s Quality Foundation in the facilitation of a national shared vision for the country of Aruba: Aruba, 2005. This process involved all segments of their society including school age children. Michele is also a keynote speaker at meetings and conferences around the world for businesses, nonprofit organizations and communities. Her presentations are founded on her belief that people have the capacity to create far better futures than we have dared to dream. She comes to these beliefs through her personal and professional experiences and through her research on others who have dreamed big and turned their dreams into reality. She published these stories in her book, DreamMakers: Putting Vision & Values to Work.
♦ Noah Goodhart
Noah is a New York based entrepreneur who has spent the last 10 years starting, running, and investing in internet companies. Along with his brother and partner Jonah, Noah started his first internet company at Cornell, an early online advertising company called Colonize.com. Noah went on to become Co-CEO of Smarter Ad Group, a leading online customer acquisition firm. Noah was also afounding investor and Board member of Right Media, the leading online advertising exchange which was acquired by Yahoo! in 2007. Most recently, Noah co-founded WGI Group, a seed stage fund which has invested in over 10 early stage technology companies, and serves on the Board of several portfolio companies.
Noah’s first internet job was in 1996 as an intern at the White House, where we helped build whitehouse.gov. Noah was the recipient of the National Science Foundation grant and has published his academic research on the role of advertising and technology in the political process. He holds a B.A. degree, summa cum laude, from Cornell University, an M.A. Degree from Yale University, and is on leave from the PhD program in political science at Yale, which he paused to pursue his entrepreneurial activities.
♦ Jonah Goodhart
Jonah is a New York based entrepreneur who has spent the last 10 years starting, running, and investing in internet companies. Along with his brother and partner Noah, Jonah started his first internet company at Cornell, an early online advertising company called Colonize.com. Jonah went on to become Co-CEO of Smarter Ad Group, a leading online customer acquisition firm. Jonah was also a founding investor and Board of Right Media, the leading online advertising exchange which was acquired by Yahoo! in 2007. Most recently, Jonah co-founded WGI Group, a seed stage fund which has invested in over 10 early stage technology companies, and serves on the Board of several portfolio companies.
Jonah holds a B.A. degree from Cornell University.