History
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In the late 1970s, Georgia Governor George Busbee funded the creation of the Georgia World Congress Institute (GWCI), an international educational and research organization housed at Georgia State University (GSU). Dr. Jim Crupi, then a GSU faculty member, conceived the idea of an international business fellows program to train Atlanta business executives in the intricacies of international business.

   

   


    
   
Influential Atlanta businessmen, including Coca-Cola executive Sam Ayoub and real estate developer John Portman, recruited rising leaders for the first SIBF class. In 1981, 26 intrepid, young executives spent two weeks studying in Atlanta and at the London Business School.
     
  

    
  

After discussing the value of the program and the close bonds that were developed among the participants, the group decided to form an organization to perpetuate their experience and to maintain relationships between the members.
    
  
 
"Having an opportunity to be a member of the first class of SIBF was one of the most
exciting and best professional experiences I've had in my career"
 - Barry Branch (GA, '81), Partner, Nancy Creek Capital, LLC
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