Senior Director, People Pathway
Why do you do what you do?
My career has been devoted to advancing racial and economic equity, catalyzed by two formative experiences: First, representing young people in Chicago’s juvenile courts opened my eyes to how the criminal-legal system—rather than provide justice—separates families and destroys lives, driven by deep-seated racism. Second, hate against South Asian Americans following September 11, 2001 forced me to consider questions about identity and belonging, sparking an examination of power and privilege and a calling to work toward dismantling oppressive systems and structures to create a truly equitable society.
What drew you to the foundation?
I’ve felt a deep alignment with and appreciation for the San Francisco Foundation as staff at several grantee organizations over my career. Working on local public safety campaigns—including the Blue Ribbon Panel on Transparency, Accountability, and Fairness in Law Enforcement, the No Justice, No Deal campaign, and the Oakland Reimagining Public Safety Task Force—demonstrated that investing in imaginative, progressive ideas in our bellwether region can have an outsized impact. With heightened inequality and growing threats to our democracy, we need investment in bold ideas now more than ever, when our collective actions can help ensure that people thrive today and for generations to come.
How would you describe your role?
The People Pathway team aims to expand access to opportunity for people in the Bay Area by investing in organizations that work to decriminalize poverty and to connect workers to quality, empowered jobs. We are also exploring innovative ways to increase economic mobility with a focus on Black and indigenous people and people of color.