The Open Society Foundations are pleased to announce the appointment of Kavita N. Ramdas as director of the Women’s Rights Program, effective September 25.
Ramdas is a globally recognized advocate for gender equity and justice, speaking often on the role civil society and philanthropy play in raising the visibility and voice of women and girls. Ramdas begins her new role with a deep, global knowledge of women’s rights philanthropy, having served as president and CEO of one of the world's leading foundations for gender equality, Global Fund for Women, from 1996 to 2010.
“The work of our Women’s Rights Program is more important than ever, especially in the face of an unprecedented wave of antiwomen, antichoice attacks by nationalist and populist governments,” said Patrick Gaspard, president of the Open Society Foundations. “We are thrilled to have a visionary leader like Kavita N. Ramdas join our team during this catalytic moment, when women are advancing alternatives toward more open societies. I am confident she will bring an inexhaustible energy and conviction to a program that has already had success expanding health, economic inclusion, and building transformative movements around the world.”
Ramdas previously served as a strategic advisor to Ford Foundation President Darren Walker; directed Ford’s India office; oversaw Ford’s Sri Lanka and Nepal offices; and had a tenure at the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, working on antipoverty programs. Ramdas also brings to Open Society Foundations an extensive expertise in working with boards, including at the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and Women’s Link Worldwide.