Sharad Vivek Sagar is a globally renowned social entrepreneur, noted thought leader, firebrand speaker and a widely followed Indian Youth Icon. Shut out of formal education for the first 12 years of his life, Sagar founded the national organization, Dexterity Global, at the age of 16. Sagar’s focus on building grassroots leadership through educational opportunities and training has received global recognition.
President Barack Obama invited him to the White House. Forbes listed him on Global Forbes 30 Under 30 list. Rockefeller Foundation inducted him in the list of 100 Next Century Innovators. Nobel Peace Center invited him to the Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony. Queen of England included him in Queen’s Young Leaders list. India’s most watched Television Show, Kaun Banega Crorepati, invited Sharad Sagar as the youngest Expert on the show. After a stirring speech at Vivekananda Memorial in Baroda, India’s leading media house Divya Bhaskar called Sagar, “the Vivekananda of 21st Century”.
Sagar’s organization reaches over 6.5 million young citizens across remote towns and villages of India, connecting young people with opportunities and building local role models for communities. Dexterity alumni have won major national and international awards, started their own initiatives and received over 520 million INR in scholarships from topmost colleges of the world. With Dexterity’s pioneering financial aid model, more than 85% of these children come from low-income families. The Telegraph observed Dexterity is “building the future of India” while Forbes noted it is “equipping young people with the mentality to solve 21st century problems."
Sagar’s illustrious high school career made national and global news as he won over 200 local, national and international quiz and debate competitions and represented India at intergovernmental and UN platforms in over six different countries. Sagar received a full scholarship to pursue his Bachelor’s Degree in International Relations at Tufts University in the United States where he broke major university records. Sagar was the first Indian to be selected the Graduation Speaker in university history. Within months of his graduation, Sagar became the youngest in 160 years of university history to receive the Alumni Achievement Award. Following his graduation, Sagar turned down a Master’s Degree offer from Harvard University to return to India in May 2016.
Michigan State University put Sagar on its Social Entrepreneurship syllabus. Govt of Taiwan quoted him on their Social Impact Agenda at World Forum in Milan, Italy. Development Bank Singapore quoted Sagar on their annual report. IIM-Nagpur prepared a case study on Dexterity Global. Hindustan listed Sagar as one of 100 Heroes of Bihar. Prabhat Khabar featured Sagar’s pioneering work as one of 106 important moments in 106 years of Bihar.
Besides his organizational leadership, Sagar is regarded as a firebrand public speaker in English and Hindi and delivers over 200 speeches across 20+ states in an average year. Sagar reaches over a million people per month on social media and was one of the first and youngest leaders in India to be verified on social media. Unfazed by global recognition and widespread popularity, Sagar considers himself a dedicated worker of Swami Vivekananda, a monk he was named after. Sagar doesn’t draw a salary, plans to stay unmarried, wears the same outfit each day and while leading his organization, travels and speaks around the country and the world as a “parivrajak”, a wandering monk.
"My story is not just my story, it's our story — the great Indian story — the story of all things being possible no matter who you are, where you were born and what your parents did; the story of your hard work and dreams and merit dictating your destiny not your inheritance or zip code or family income."