Wins ‘leadership’ talk with Obamas

Mr Iftikhar is the co-founder and CEO of Parramatta-based social enterprise Catalysr, a six-month program helping migrant and refugee entrepreneurs create their own start-ups which has supported 181 ‘migrapreneurs’ launch 50 businesses since 2016.
Named the 2018 Commonwealth Young Person of the Year, he said it was a privilege to be selected to attend the event in Kuala Lumpur which brought together 200 emerging leaders from 33 nations and territories across the Asia-Pacific region.
“The two large problems that I care about are climate change and the refugee crisis,” he said.
“I applied to the Obama Foundation Leaders: Asia-Pacific Program to learn more about the effects of our impending ‘climate refugee crisis’ and how we can proactively create and scale solutions, like Catalysr, to meet this global challenge head-on.”
The City of Parramatta Council has provided Catalysr with a range of funding and support, and Lord Mayor Bob Dwyer said the Obama Foundation Leaders Program was “an extraordinary opportunity for a voice from Parramatta to be heard on a global stage”.