2021 Innovators Awards in Global Affairs and Benefit

Join us for Network 20/20’s Virtual
2021 Innovators Awards in Global Affairs and Benefit!

Wednesday, March 24, 2021
7:00 – 7:45 pm ET

Visit the Online Auction launching on March 17


Jean-Yves Fillion
CEO, BNP Paribas USA
Global Leadership Award

Clarissa Ward
CNN’s Chief International Correspondent
Ted Sorensen Award

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Network 20/20’s Global Leadership Award was started in 2011 to honor a business leader who demonstrates:

  • Commitment to fostering United States engagement overseas
  • Entrepreneurial Approaches to global challenges
  • Innovation in her or his area of expertise
  • Participation in transnational efforts to enhance global peace and prosperity, and
  • Mentorship of the next generation

We are delighted to give this honor in 2021 to Jean-Yves Fillion for his groundbreaking work leading BNP Paribas USA and using the tools of one of the world’s largest banks to address critical global challenges such as sustainability and inclusion.

Global Leadership Awardee: Jean-Yves Fillion, CEO of BNP Paribas USA

Jean-Yves Fillion is Chief Executive Officer of BNP Paribas USA, overseeing the bank’s wholesale and retail activities in the United States.

Mr. Fillion has been with BNP Paribas for 36 years, 29 of which he has spent in the United States between Chicago, Los Angeles and New York. He serves on the Board of Directors of BNP Paribas USA and on the Boards of its subsidiaries: Bank of the West Corporation and BNP Paribas US Wholesale Holdings, Corp. He is also a Director of the Advisory Board of Hautes Études Commerciales (HEC), his alma mater. In line with the Bank’s worldwide commitment to tennis, Mr. Fillion is a member of the Board of Governors for the International Tennis Hall of Fame. A former member of the French National Sailing Team, he is an active member of the New York Yacht Club and American Yacht Club.

Since joining the bank in 1984, Mr. Fillion has served the bank in a succession of executive positions. Previous to his current role, he served as CEO of CIB Americas, COO of BNP Paribas Fortis and Co-Head of BNP Paribas’ CIB European Platform. Previous to those roles, he spent the bulk of his career in the US as Head of Client Coverage in North America, Head of Structured Finance Americas, Head of Acquisition Finance and Head of Media & Telecom Finance.

Mr. Fillion received a Master’s degree from Dauphine University and his MBA from HEC in Paris. He also studied at the Kellogg School of Management of Northwestern University in Chicago.


The Ted Sorensen Award honors a emerging leader who exemplifies the values of Ted Sorensen and Network 20/20:

  • Passion for sound global engagement,
  • Dedication to the public good, and
  • The ability to put words to one’s aims.

We are delighted to give this honor in 2021 to Clarissa Ward for her adeptly crafting the first draft of history and providing original insight into the people and events of our time.

Ted Sorensen Awardee: Clarissa Ward, CNN’s Chief International Correspondent

Clarissa Ward is CNN’s chief international correspondent.
She has spent more than 15 years reporting from front lines in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Egypt and Ukraine for ABC, CBS and Fox News.

A recipient of multiple journalism recognitions including two George Foster Peabody Awards, two Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Awards, five Emmy Awards and two Edward R. Murrow Awards for distinguished journalism, she is the author of the new book, ‘On All Fronts: The Education of a Journalist’ (Penguin Press), which details her singular career as a conflict reporter and how she has documented the violent remaking of the world from close range.

Known for her in-depth investigations and high-profile assignments, Ward most recently investigated the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny and subsequent trial. Last year she also uncovered a Russian troll operation in Ghana and Nigeria that was responsible for stirring up social unrest in the US. That reporting on Russia’s secret influence campaigns was named a finalist of the 2021 Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Award.

In 2019 her months-long, Emmy Award-winning investigation into Russia’s growing use of mercenaries – Putin’s Private Army – included the first on-camera interview with a former fighter for Wager, Russia’s most notorious private military contractor. After visiting a diamond mine with ties to a Russian oligarch in the Central African Republic, Ward and her team were followed and intimidated by a car full of Russians. After their reports came out, they were targeted by a Russian media propaganda campaign trying to discredit their reporting.

Ward has reported extensively in Syria since the start of the civil war in 2011, making multiple undercover assignments to the country including one in 2014 when she interviewed two Western fighters about why they joined the jihad there. One of the jihadists was a young Somali-American from the Midwest, making Ward the only Western journalist to have interviewed an American jihadist fighter inside Syria since the start of the civil war.

As one of the last Western reporters to visit rebel-held Aleppo, Ward was asked to address a UN Security Council meeting on the embattled Syrian city in 2016, stating “there are no winners in Aleppo.”

Ward has conducted many interviews with world leaders like U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2012 and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in 2013, challenging them both on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s brutal crackdown inside Syria, as well as former CIA Director and retired US Army Gen. David Petraeus and Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko after Iranian missiles took down a Ukrainian passenger jet earlier this year.

Ward graduated with distinction from Yale University, and in 2013 received an Honorary Doctor of Letters degree from Middlebury College in Vermont. She speaks fluent French and Italian, conversational Russian, Arabic and Spanish and basic Mandarin.

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