Mark Drewell

Mark Drewell is the Chief executive of the Globally Responsible Leadership Initiative (, a global coalition of companies and business schools addressing the challenge of creating a new generation of globally responsible business leaders.

His business career began in the mid 80’s in mining finance in the City of London after a degree in Philosophy Politics and Economics at Oxford University. He then moved to South Africa in 1989 and worked for Johannesburg listed diversified multi-national industrial group Barloworld Limited. Starting out in the steel and ferrochrome business, he rose to spend a decade as head of Corporate Affairs, Investor Relations and Group Marketing.

Mark Drewell was a co-founder of the Middelburg Forum which was the prototype for the South African Peace Committees through which business played a vital role in managing South Africa’s first post apartheid elections; led the re-naming and re-branding of Barloworld across 8 operating divisions and 32 countries; and pioneered the company’s early adoption of triple bottom line performance measurement.

Under his leadership in 2004 Barloworld became a founding partner in the GRLI. He played a powerful role in the GRLI’s development at both an intellectual and practical level, serving as the first chair of the GRLI Foundation from 2006-2008.
He left Barloworld in 2007, moved to Cape Town and co-founded 3 Laws Capital (, a deep sustainability asset management company with a venture capital focus. He is also a director and founder of The Elgin Distilling Company ( which has recently launched the world’s most exclusive new terroir spirit.
He is a senior associate of the University of Cambridge Programme for Sustainability Leadership and Chairman of the Swedish-based World’s Children’s Prize for the Rights of the Child Foundation.

Drewell has served as Deputy Chairman of the Advisory Board of the University of South Africa’s Centre for Corporate Citizenship; Chairman of the Endangered Wildlife Trust (South Africa’s largest indigenous environmental NGO); Chairman of the board of Imhoff Waldorf School, Cape Town and served twice on the board of San Francisco headquartered International Association of Business Communicators which is the world’s 14 000 member professional association for business communicators.