CEMS Alumni of the Year 2021 Announced

After an unprecedented number of nominations and votes, the results for this year's CEMS Alumni of the Year are in! We would like to extend a round of applause to our CEMS Alumni of the Year Award Winners 2021.
CEMS AoY Awardees 2021

To celebrate these diverse successes of our alumni, the Global Office, Student Board & the CEMS Alumni Association has instituted the CEMS Alumni of the Year awards. The CEMS Alumni Awards are presented annually to outstanding alumni in recognition of excellent contributions to promote one or many of the CEMS values based on the 5 important parameters below:

  • Global Citizenship
  • Cultural Diversity
  • Professional Responsibility
  • Professional Accountability
  • Impact on society as a whole

Voting was conducted by the following CEMS Community members:  students, alumni, academic representatives (i.e. program manager, corporate relations manager, academic director, CP, GO etc.).



2021 CEMS AoY Award Winners

Read more about our 2021 awardees below:

Young Alumni Category: Angela Honegger, HSG/ HEC, 2018

After graduating from the CEMS MiM in 2017, Angela became president of "Student Impact”, an organization that advises social and sustainable startups in business-related areas and sensitizes students for more sustainability in the business world. After that, she co-created a global call for innovation on sustainable packaging solutions with Ashoka, an NGO supporting social entrepreneurs from all over the world. In parallel, Angela started her PhD on innovation for basic needs which improve the quality of life of people living in poverty. To transfer her theoretical work into practice, Angela recently became a fellow of the Mercator Foundation. For the first work placement of her fellowship year, she joined the "Disruptive Technologies and Venture Capital” team at the International Finance Corporation of the World Bank Group to accelerate social inclusion and economic growth in low-income countries.


Mid-Career Category:  Akanksha Batura Pai, NUS/ LSE & Bocconi, 2014

She is the Chairperson of the Young Executives Group of the SSA, furthermore she has also been appointed by The Ministry of Transport as Singapore’s Goodwill Maritime Ambassador (GMA) at the international level at the International Maritime Organization (IMO). As the Chairperson of the YEG and the IMO GMA, she engages youth in Singapore & around Southeast Asia & advocates for the maritime industry. She has managed to work with many government agencies to engage with the youth and educate them about the importance of the maritime industry & encourage them to join the industry. While Akanksha works as the Head of Strategy and Growth at Sinoda Shipping Agency Pte Ltd, she also serves as the Strategy Consultant at RAKS International Pte Ltd & at TransAsia Marine Services Pte Ltd. She has overhauled each company’s digitisation efforts by developing & implementing proprietary software solutions to increase operating efficiencies of each company. In addition, Akanksha is the Liaison Officer at The Hon. Consulate-General of Malta to Singapore. Strengthening diplomatic ties between Malta and Singapore by representing Malta strongly at cultural events - such as the annual European Union Film Festival, she has even furthered economic growth between the two countries by organizing the first ever Singapore- Malta Business Forum 2019 (before the pandemic) and by promoting Malta’s tertiary education opportunities to students in Singapore at the Study In Europe 2019 higher education fair (also pre-pandemic).


Senior Category:  Barbara Cominelli, Bocconi/ ESADE, 1994

After leading over 3,000 people at Vodafone, she became Chief Operating Office at Microsoft Italy and is today the CEO of the commercial real estate and investment firm JLL (Jones Lang LaSalle SpA) in Italy. Barbara embodies forceful, energetic and caring leadership. She has built a tremendous career. After leading over 3,000 people at Vodafone, she became Chief Operating Office at Microsoft Italy and is today the CEO of the commercial real estate and investment firm JLL (Jones Lang LaSalle SpA) in Italy. Barbara strives to be an insightful leader, in particular for women. She mentors and encourages women to reach their potential.  Read more here


Thanks to all within the CEMS Community who cast their vote!  The race was very close this year, but we would like to give a warm round of applause to our awardees and all of the candidates.  Well done and we look forward to next year's ballot.  Stay tuned for follow-up with our awardees in the CEMS Podcast and CEMS Global Alumni Week 2022 (March 29th - April 1st, 2022).