Board of Directors
THE CHOPRA FOUNDATION
Deepak Chopra, MD
CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD, FOUNDER & DIRECTOR
Deepak Chopra MD, FACP, founder of The Chopra Foundation, a non-profit entity for research on well-being and humanitarianism, and Chopra Global, a modern-day health company at the intersection of science and spirituality, is a world-renowned pioneer in integrative medicine and personal transformation. Chopra is a Clinical Professor of Family Medicine and Public Health at the University of California, San Diego. He is the author of over 89 books translated into over forty-three languages, including numerous New York Times bestsellers. His 90th book and national bestseller, Metahuman: Unleashing Your Infinite Potential (Harmony Books), unlocks the secrets to moving beyond our present limitations to access a field of infinite possibilities. TIME magazine has described Dr. Chopra as “one of the top 100 heroes and icons of the century.”
Ray Chambers is a philanthropist and humanitarian who has directed most of his efforts towards helping at-risk children. He is the Founding Chairman of the Points of Light Institute and co-founded, with Colin Powell, America’s Promise Alliance. Mr. Chambers is the Co-Founder of the National Mentoring Partnership, Founding Chairman of The Millennium Promise Alliance and Co-Founding Chairman of Malaria No More.
Mr. Chambers is also the Founding Chairman of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center He was the Chairman of Wesray Capital Corporation, which he co-founded with William E. Simon.
In February 2008, the Secretary-General of the United Nations appointed Mr. Chambers as the first Special Envoy of the Secretary-General for Malaria. The Secretary-General announced in June 2010 that Mr. Chambers had been appointed a member of his Millennium Development Goals Advocacy Group, a collection of recognized experts, humanitarians and leaders convened specifically to advance the achievement of the MDGs. In February 2013 the Secretary-General expanded Mr. Chambers’ mandate as his first Special Envoy for Financing the Health Millennium Development Goals and in 2016, with the adoption by the UN of the Sustainable Development Goals, the Secretary-General appointed Mr. Chambers as his Special Envoy for Health in Agenda 2030 and for Malaria.
In December 2008 President Bush recognized Mr. Chambers with the Presidential Citizens Medal for his work helping children worldwide. He was selected one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People for 2011.
François Ferré, Ph.D.
Dr. François Ferré is the co-CEO of ALMA Life Sciences LLC, an investment and consulting firm. He is also the co-Chairman and co-Founder of AltheaDx, a privately-held company (a spinoff of Althea Technologies) focusing on the development of pharmacogenomic tests. Dr. Ferre was the CEO of AltheaDx from 2010 to June 2013. Prior to AltheaDx, Dr. Ferré co-founded Althea Technologies and served as co-CEO from 1998 until 2008. He was a Director of Althea Technologies until April 2013 and has recently been appointed a Director of Ajinomoto-Althea after the acquisition of the company by Ajinomoto. He also currently serves on the board of a number of private companies such as Biomatrica and Portable Genomics. He is co-Chairman of the Advisory Board of MD Revolution.
Dr. Ferre is also a Trustee of the Keck Graduate Institute, Claremont CA. Dr. Ferré was the winner of the 2005 E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year award in the Life Sciences category. Dr. Ferré is a leader in gene quantification and biomarker development in the fields of AIDS and Cancer research.
In collaboration with Dr. Jonas Salk, he developed the first FDA validated quantitative PCR test for the assessment of HIV pro-viral DNA load in AIDS patients. Dr. Ferre has published several authoritative reviews on these topics, including the co-edition of a bestseller book on PCR with Nobel Prize winner, Dr. Cary Mullis. He received his Ph.D. in molecular oncology from the Pasteur Institute, France, and did his post-doctoral training at the University of California, San Diego.
Ajay K. Gupta
ACTING PRESIDENT & DIRECTOR
With his conviction about the importance of independence, transparency, and objective advice, Ajay K. Gupta actively co-collaborates with high-net-worth individuals in developing and implementing cohesive strategies that address their financial, investment, insurance, tax, charitable, and estate planning needs.
Ajay K. Gupta serves as the Chief of Investment Strategy and board of director at Creative Planning, Inc., an SEC Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) with clients in all 50 states and abroad. Prior to joining Creative, Gupta was founding principal of Gupta Wealth Management (GWM), a San Diego-based RIA after having lead San Diego wealth management team for UBS.
Ajay earned a Bachelor of Commerce with a major in finance from Concordia University. He attained the Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA®) designation after successfully completing the Advanced Training Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business. Gupta also completed the Private Equity and Venture Capital (PEVC) program at Harvard Business School and the Certified Private Wealth Advisor Education Program at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business.
Ajay lives in San Diego, California, with his wife, son, and twin daughters.
Matthew Harris is a founding partner of Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) and is based in New York. Matthew leads GIP’s global energy industry investment team including crude oil and refined product, natural gas, electricity, LNG, petrochemicals and metals and mining. He is also a member of the Executive Committee of GIP and of its Investment and Portfolio Valuation Committees. Matthew has been intimately involved in GIP’s investment, management, and strategic activities since its formation in 2006.
GIP is an independent infrastructure fund manager that combines deep industry expertise and relationships with industrial best practice operational management. GIP was founded in 2006 to invest in high-quality infrastructure assets in the energy, transportation and water/waste sectors, each an area in which GIP has a depth of experience and longstanding relationships. GIP manages approximately $45 billion for its investors. Additionally, the companies in GIP’s investment portfolio have combined annual revenues greater than $33.8 billion and employ approximately 47,000 people.
Matthew is Co-Founder and Co-Chairperson of The Bedari Foundation. The Bedari Foundation is a private family foundation dedicated to using its experience and resources to enable significant cultural shifts in the fields of mental health and wellness, community displacement and environmental conservation. The Foundation’s vision is that humanity can cultivate the deeper sense of self-awareness and spirituality required to reassess underlying attitudes, beliefs, and responsibilities about ourselves, our communities and our planet.
Matthew is Co-Founder of The Avatar Companies. Avatar is a private partnership focused on making equity investments in the emerging fields of mental health and wellness. Avatar’s companies typically offer proprietary, branded and scalable solutions to the mental health and wellness crisis affecting our world.
Matthew holds a B.A. in Political Science (cum laude) from the University of California at Los Angeles. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the World Wildlife Fund.
TREASURER & SECRETARY, DIRECTOR
Paul Johnson is a former managing partner of Johnson O’Connor Feron and Carucci, LLP in the greater Boston area. He has extensive experience in business advisory services, high net worth strategic planning, and estate and trust services. Paul recently completed service for the maximum terms as a member of the Board of Trustees of Hartwick College where he was chair of the Financial Affairs Committee.
Paul is a member of the Board of Directors of a number of not-for-profit organizations including Bethany Homes, a national leader in senior housing with services where he serves as Treasurer and chair of the Finance Committee, the Boston Cardiac Foundation, the Strazzula Foundation in Boston and other organizations, including the Chopra Foundation.
Fred Matser, leading humanitarian and businessman, is the founder and co-founder of a wide range of charitable foundations that span the fields of healthcare, environment, conservation, peace, and global transformation. One of his bigger initiatives is StartFund, a fund that aims the empowerment of people in a sustainable context. This fund has co-financed about 300 projects in over 50 countries. Previously the director of one of the most successful real estate and project development companies in the Netherlands, since the last 30 years he concentrates on philanthropic projects aimed at inspiring individuals and groups towards the creation of a more functional society. He has been honored with several international awards for these projects.
In his humanitarian work, he has initiated or contributed to a number of significant and original humanitarian projects including Peace Child, Child Alive Program for Red Cross, Fred Foundation, StartFund, Malaria No More, and The Twinkling Eyes Club. For his work, Fred has received several awards including the first international Caring Award in Washington, DC in 1992, which was later awarded to individuals such as Mother Teresa and Jane Goodall. He also received the Van Emden Award in The Hague, The Netherlands in 1995.
Alice Walton is a committed patron of the arts and philanthropist, recognized by TIME magazine as one of the most influential people in the world (2012). She led the Walton Family Foundation’s founding of Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art and serves as Chairwoman of the museum’s Board of Directors. Since opening in 2011, the museum has welcomed more than 2.5 million visitors.
Located in her hometown of Bentonville, Arkansas, Crystal Bridges is among several of Ms. Walton’s transformative projects. She was a driving force in the development of the Northwest Arkansas Regional Airport, improving transportation infrastructure throughout the region. She also established Camp War Eagle, which offers Northwest Arkansas children of differing socio-economic backgrounds an exceptional summer camp experience.
Ms. Walton has had an extensive career in finance, including the founding of the investment bank Llama Company. She is also a former breeder and owner of championship cutting horses.
Ms. Walton holds a Bachelor of Arts from Trinity University and an honorary Doctor of Arts and Humane Letters from the University of Arkansas.