Professor Leigh Fisher

Associate Director, Centre for India Australia Studies (CIAS)

India Connect Consultant - Education & Training
Pre-pandemic Manager, CSR External Relations and Partnerships, AKDN
PhD researcher, RMIT Australia…’making sense of the Anganwadi’
Professor of Practice, JGBS, OP Jindal Global University, India

Passionate about people, purpose and productivity, Leigh is committed to finding new ways to provide access to quality education and training for the most challenged sectors of the world’s populations. With over 30 years’ experience of schools, colleges and universities, her contributions have encompassed: education futures studies, visioning and strategy road mapping for global business strategy; education marketing and communications; careers access for underprivileged youth; successful major grant seeking and writing; creating global alumni networks; high level stakeholder management; major fundraising initiatives and public event management. Leigh is a published triple language translator (French, Spanish, English); and delights in generating high performing teams in diverse cultures and work environments.

In international development contexts, Leigh is an experienced, India based CSR manager; a qualified teacher, teacher trainer and corporate workshop facilitator; a major project manager in public education; and state level events founder. Her 40+ year track record of social and community achievement crosses both developed and developing worlds. Leigh works for positive change and social transformation through collaborations and partnerships, linking global strategy to local implementation. Leigh is currently pursuing PhD research in India’s Anganwadi, following her involvement in recent, grassroots, digitization projects in Telangana.

A 2014 Hult-Ashridge ‘triple crown’ MBA, Leigh has worked as lead Business Strategist for OCR @ Cambridge Assessment, the UK’s premier global examinations board, and as an Education and Training specialist for AKDN agencies in India. Managing CSR External Relations & Partnerships from 2015-2019, Leigh brokered major PPP’s with several Telangana State Departments: (1) developing scale training models for government schools (Education, Schools, and Minorities); (2) delivering a successful Anganwadi digitization project for Mahbubnagar District; (3) designed scale digital transformation of Anganwadi for the Department of WD&CW. (4) Leigh’s enduring contribution to Hyderabad was the design and execution of the Telangana International Kite Festival (TIKF) for the TS Department of Tourism (2016-18) – now with an annual attendance of over 1 million during Sankranti season. (5) Her work for Microsoft’s first global education conference on ‘School Leadership for Innovation’ connected Microsoft Innovation Centre and ISB Hyderabad to India wide school networks.

In 2017 Leigh was awarded the ‘Black Swan Award’ for her contribution to India’s Women Empowerment agenda and delivered a presentation on ‘Marketing for Schools’, at Mumbai’s IB conference. By 2018 she was an active partner in creating India-wide networks for: CSR Managers; Independent Schools for Admissions & Marketing and Hult Business School India alumni. Leigh has continued professional learning in India through Executive Education courses in CSR (2017) and FDI (2019) at ISB, Hyderabad. In 2020, she represented Telangana’s Anganwadi Transformation Project for TS Secretary of WCD at MIT’s India Initiative event in Mumbai.

Leigh’s academic profile includes a triple accredited MBA from Hult-Ashridge Business School, UK; Open BA (Biology, Psychology and Health) from The Open University UK; a Post Graduate Certificate in Science Education (PGCE), University of Exeter, UK; and qualifications in TESOL and EFL from American University Cairo (AUC) and Edinburgh. In 2012 Leigh was awarded a competitive scholarship to Ashridge Business School for ‘Women in Leadership’. An early Rotary International Youth Ambassador from Australia to India, Leigh retains her Bombay Main Rotary Club networks in Maharashtra.