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Samantha Karlin

Samantha Karlin is the CEO of Empower Global, which facilitates trainings on diversity and inclusion issues for Fortune 500 companies. Empower also runs a groundbreaking women’s leadership challenge for small groups of women leaders from around the world. Some of Empower’s clients include Slalom, RB, Cresa, Verizon, Reaology, Insight Partners, and beyond. She is also a facilitator for Korn Ferry, and for Equal Reality, which utilizes virtual reality for DEI. She speaks and does training all over the world, including at Harvard University, Tufts University, IE University, Indian Institute for Management, the Horasis Global Conference, etc., and is a TEDx speaker. She is also the host of Samanthropolitics, a cutting-edge talk show about international relations and women’s rights, where she interviews DC heavy weights and on the ground activists about US foreign policy.


Previously, Samantha led global engagement for a Silicon Valley tech company, led Ashoka’s programming with women social entrepreneurs, built coalitions for the Hillary for America campaign, and managed the women’s issues portfolio for the US Embassy in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Samantha holds a Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy with a specialization in global gender analysis and conflict resolution from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy. She is a trained mediator and speaks Spanish fluently. She has been published in the Washington Post, Conscious Company Magazine and Women2.0, and is a New America expert.



She is currently working on a book about Feminist Leadership. Samantha has traveled all over the world, and loves to share funny and relatable anecdotes from her travels to highlight points related to social impact and diversity and inclusion. Samantha also has a multiply handicapped sister named Lindsay, who made history as the first person in the world to receive gene therapy for a genetic brain disease in 1998. She has been running the foundation to support kids with Canavan Disease for years. 

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Samantha Karlin Reviews

Alexandra Latimer

Review: Samantha was way more than I bargained for in a panel moderator. She was prepared, knowledgeable, attentive, entertaining, enlightening and so much more. She is masterful in the way she was able to keep the panel flowing, on topic and balanced. We had 3 panelists and she was fair in ensuring that no one panelist dominated the conversation, but also made sure to ask follow up questions that added value and substance to the conversation. I'd have her as a moderator again, and highly recommend her for any discussion topic that has an emphasis on diversity, diversity education, inclusion, equity and belonging.

Simone Bateson

Review: Samantha spoke at TEDxTufts' 2020 conference. As the opening speaker, she really set the tone for our event. Samantha immediately energized the audience with her simultaneously professional and down-to-earth tone. She explored the topic of women's empowerment in a way that was easy for any audience member to understand and grapple with, while also including nuanced personal anecdotes and refreshing takeaways. Samantha was also a pleasure to work with! Her comfort on stage made coaching extremely simple, and her eager engagement with our team and other speakers made the experience rewarding for all involved with our event.

Lauren Cardenas, Slalom

Review: Empowerment of under-served voices is a responsibility that lands on each of our shoulders. How we engage, and the decisions we make leave trickling and lasting impacts on those around us. To stray from using a gendered sports analogy - each drop in the ocean has the potential to contribute to a wave. Shifting a culture isn’t easy, and maintaining one can prove just as challenging. Samantha Karlin helped us take these first steps in becoming better mentors and colleagues by facilitating a corporate workshop on Gender Equity at Slalom’s South Florida Office. Following her workshop, participants and allies met to take actionable steps towards making our office more gender equitable. We are continuing to amplify our efforts in D&I recruitment and are considering larger internal initiatives to ensure that candidates and employees are not subject to implicit racial and gender biases. We are holding each other accountable to produce more gender neutral team outings, and to refrain from using gendered language and analogies in our discussions, among others. Samantha’s workshop ignited a powerful movement at Slalom South Florida, and we are greatly appreciative of her services, and of her continued impact on gender equity in the workplace.

Jose Sastre, IE Business School

Review: I had a chance to work with Samantha while I was doing my MBA at IE Business School, she came as a speaker to talk about diversity and inclusion for an academic club I was coordinating. She showed complete control and knowledge regarding the topic, it was really insightful and enriching. She was very open to all the questions that were made by several students. I was really proud of the impact and level the talk had, since she is a really adept and very professional speaker.

More About Samantha Karlin

  • Are there any moments that stand out as having a significant impact on your career? I have significant experience internationally, both living and working. Working for the US State Department in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and training young leaders in Peru were both incredibly
  • Outside of your profession do you have any hobbies/interests? I was trained as an opera singer, and sang professionally in Europe starting at age 16. I love singing Mozart, Bach, and Donizetti and still spin out some arias at concerts in DC.
  • Who do you look up to as a mentor and why? Madeline Albright. If there had been any woman who was equipped to be president it was Madeline. She's an incredibly sage, astute, and culturally adept woman who made incredibly strides given