My Story

Purpose - Our Guiding 'North Star'

“I went from an anti-apartheid family in South Africa, experiencing leadership excellence at age 7 in a rural mission hospital (Nqutu) in Kwa-Zulu Natal, meeting Nelson Mandela, placing his CEO, interviewing 10 000 potential leaders, being a ‘whistle-blower’, and surviving ovarian cancer, to being a Harvard University fellow, in less than four decades – I learned a new and better leadership way.” – Anne Pratt

How my journey began ...

“Being an adopted child meeting my birth family just before my 45th birthday, discovering my “roots” and a total of seven multi-cultures in my two families of origin, and feeling connected in diversity, helped me understand we share a more significant cultural history than we realize – our shared humanity. As we learn in Africa, it is our interconnected spirit of Ubuntu.”

– Anne Pratt

The 'terrible two's'

“Adoption can be complicated for parents and children alike. We got lucky. Each of us at different times met some of our respective birth families, understanding more of ‘our roots,’ always eager to share our individual experience and insights with each other. It is an unpredictable genealogy adventure, never quite knowing what comes up next, yet secure knowing ‘we are a team.’

– Anne Pratt

My own leadership crucible ...

“Despite significant losses in personal wealth, duplicitous media exposure for daring to ‘blow the whistle’ on my opponents who know (and knew) the uncomfortable and inconvenient truth…. Just 13 words from Nelson Mandela fortified my own moral courage to ‘do the right thing’ and brought me to Harvard to impact leadership excellence and better our world. How to Lead and Stay Alive is personal for me.”
– Anne Pratt

An Empirical Case for Hope

“Growing up in an authoritarian police state in an apartheid South Africa, living through deep divides, meeting Mandela, placing his CEO, listening, learning, and understanding the fears, the anger, and losses, coming to Harvard in January 2017, all deepened my core belief that Mandela is an empirical case of HOPE for America and the world today. Voted the ‘Leader of Leaders of the 20th Century’, his leadership way gives our world a more human face.”
– Anne Pratt

Who will cry when I die?

“Climbing Table Mountain in Cape Town in 2016, ‘waking up’ my ovarian cancer tumor, climbing Devil’s Peak a week later reciting ‘Invictus’, spiritually connecting with Mandela from the top, the thinnest layer between heaven and earth, gazing across an abundant Atlantic ocean to settle on Robben Island, inspired my faith to truly LIVE – to ‘be’ more, to ‘do’ more, to touch lives and to make an impact.”

– Anne Pratt


“Our gratitude, a practiced habit, creates immeasurable daily joy. It can be felt and expressed in times of vulnerability or tough, even grave adversity. In fact, it fuels our hope, it becomes our salvation.”

– Anne Pratt

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