Maria Guajardo is committed to raising the next generation of global leaders as a Professor of Leadership Studies at Soka University, Tokyo. Previously she served as Dean and Vice-President, with the distinction of being the first female and non-Japanese to serve in these positions. Her research connects leadership development, global citizenship education, and social change. Her work in diversity, equity, and inclusion has taken her from Malaysia to Mumbai, and from Singapore to South Africa. Her portfolio includes national and local policy work, leading national youth development initiatives, and advancing educational initiatives for children living in poverty. Maria, a clinical psychologist, author, and mother, has degrees from Harvard University and the University of Denver.