There is so much negative news about people committing atrocities out there in the world, we could almost believe there aren’t any good role models to look up to. Many people look to superheroes to fill their hearts with hope—others look to celebrities to mirror their lifestyles.
Sometimes people forget to look up to those who are actually doing things to make the world a better place, the real role models of our times—some are business people, others, human rights activists. Let’s take a look at four noteworthy role models we can strive to resemble.
1. Matthew Gline
The first role model on our list is Matthew Gline, the CEO of Roivant Sciences, a biopharma company dedicated to improving inefficiencies in the industry. Roivant Sciences develops medicine and technology in innovative ways. This is accomplished with the help of its subsidiaries—distinguished by their suffix “vant”. For example, Axovant produces gene therapies for neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, Lokavant elaborates solutions for clinical trial monitoring, and Immunovant focuses on autoimmune therapeutic solutions.
Mr. Gline has an admirable background. His career in biopharma officially took off when he studied at Harvard College, where he earned his AB degree in Physics. Later, he went on to become the founder of FourThree, a consulting and risk analytics technology company. Afterward, he was appointed Vice President at Barclays, a risk management company, Vice President at Goldman Sachs in Digital Structuring, and lastly, Chief Financial Officer at Roivant Sciences before becoming the Chief Executive Officer. At Roivant Sciences, he oversaw the billion-dollar merger with Sumitomo Dainippon Pharma, a biopharma company based in Japan.
2. Malliha Wilson
Another role model people should be aware of is Malliha Wilson, the first visible minority to be appointed as Ontario’s Assistant Deputy Attorney General. Ms. Wilson, a Tamil Canadian, earned her undergraduate degree in one of the most prominent colleges in Montreal, Qébec, McGill University. Later, she finished her law degree at Osgoode Hall Law School at York University, Toronto, Ontario.
Wilson’s career is centered around human rights, labour law, and politics in Canada. She served the Supreme Court of Canada and Ontario Court of Appeal as litigation counsel. Malliha also served in the Ontario Public Service, Counsel for the Ministry of Government Services, Native Affairs Secretariat, Ministry of Labour, and Crown Law Office-Civil. After serving for eight years as Assistant Deputy Attorney, she served the Investment Management Corporation of Ontario (IMCO) as a Special Legal Advisor.
She has received multiple awards for her legal advisory services and co-founded the Toronto-Based law firm, Nava Wilson LLP. Presently, she’s a part of the Advancement of Parliamentary Democracy at the Board of the Churchill Society, Global Journal, Editorial Board of the Philippe Kirsch Institute, Principal’s Advisory Group, and Board of Osgoode Hall Law School Alumni Association. On top of that, she attends comdu.it galas to raise funds for the improvement of Sri Lanka’s Northern and Eastern districts. It’s no wonder so many people look up to someone as influential as Malliha.
3. Vivek Ramaswamy
Vivek Ramaswamy, the former CEO and founder of Roivant Sciences, is another key figure in our times. Having graduated summa cum laude from Harvard College, he developed a career in biopharma. He co-founded Campus Venture Network, where he was also the President, and worked at QVT Financial’s biotech portfolio. In 2021, he stepped down as CEO at Roivant and became an executive chairman for the company, and was succeeded by Matt Gline. Presently, he focuses on his writing and public appearances regarding biopharma and cultural issues.
4. S. J. V. Chelvanayakam
Coined the Gandhi of Sri Lanka, S. J. V. Chelvanayakam, Malliha’s grandfather, was a non-violent Tamil political leader, human rights activist, lawyer, and author. He was a Member of Parliament and founder of the Illankai Tamil Arasu Kachchi (ITAK)—a political party that advocates for ethnic minorities in Sri Lanka.
Role models are all around us for us to admire and mirror—we just have to not lose sight of our integrity. As a collective, we have to focus on how we can become role models ourselves for generations to come and bring forth the best in us for this world.