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How does your work satisfy your childhood goals?

Julie Kae is a world-class executive with the global data analytics firm Qlik.

The speaker next Friday at the Good Leadership Breakfast is an international leader who is living the dreams she set as a small-town, Iowa child. What started as an accounting career in Chicago has developed into one of the most important partnership agreements with the United Nations. Julie Kae, the Global Head of Corporate Social Responsibility and Executive Director of, is helping advance the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals for the people of planet earth. That’s big.

The official launch of was celebrated with colleagues at the United Nations in March of 2019.

Cheerleader, Cruise-director, Big Apple

“I love to share my three dreams as a young Iowa farm girl: Be a Dallas Cowboy Cheerleader, then a Cruise Director like Julie on Love Boat, and then go to live and work in New York City… those were my dreams. And I’ve found a little bit of each of those goals doing my work with Qlik,” Julie smiled.

Qlik is a world-class data analytics and business intelligence company, founded in Lund, Sweden in 1993, by the late Bjorn Berg and Staffan Gestrelius. The entire leadership suite of Qlik lives the Cornerstones of Goodness: excellence, fairness, positivity – and particularly, generosity. Julie’s job is to organize, deploy, and quantify the free-distribution of their data technology to charitable partners who make up the ecosystem of conservation and humanitarian efforts across the globe.

One of the satisfying parts of Julie’s job is introducing interns to the inner workings of the United Nations.

Following the winding path

“My accounting degree, from the University of Iowa, led me to a ten-year career in data analytics in California. I made my way to Boston as a sales manager working for Qlik,” she explained. While managing the largest clients to help them use data to be more efficient, she sought opportunities to share the magic with non-profit leaders who were changing the world, and her CEO noticed. When she was asked to develop the global strategy, she jumped at the chance.

As the Executive Director of, she leads the partnering efforts with several US Federal Agencies and the United Nations, leveraging public data for Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) to become more efficient and effective. “Climate Change is a huge focus area, and we directly help with important issues like sustainable farming, packaging, and environmental protection.” 

Julie showed children in Malawi their self-images for the first time – there are no mirrors in the village where they live.

Making space for good leadership

We’re grateful she can make a stop in Minneapolis to visit the Good Leadership Breakfast. Julie is a single mother, raising three teenagers – while managing a global travel schedule. “I love the challenge of making my life work for myself and my children.  I really am living my childhood dreams: I’m a cheerleader for humanitarian work and improving climate change, I direct global travel and I spend a lot of time in NYC with the United Nations,” she says with pride. “My message is simple: if you have clear dreams, you can find ways to make them come true – I’m the living example of how to make that happen.”


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