Kiran Ahuja has more than two decades of public service and nonprofit/philanthropic sector leadership experience. Ahuja currently serves as CEO of Philanthropy Northwest, a regional network of philanthropic institutions. Ahuja began her career as a civil rights lawyer at the U.S. Department of Justice, litigating school desegregation cases, and filing the department’s first student racial harassment case.
From 2003 to 2008, Ahuja served as the founding executive director of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, an advocacy and membership organization. During the Obama-Biden Administration, she spent six years as executive director of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, leading efforts to increase access to federal services, resources and programs for underserved Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs). Ahuja went on to serve as chief of staff at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM).
Ahuja grew up in Savannah, Georgia, as a young Indian immigrant in the wake of the civil rights era, and earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Spelman College and a law degree from the University of Georgia.