Prachi Patankar currently leads the South and Southeast Asia portfolio at the Foundation for a Just Society. Born and raised in rural India, Prachi was raised by a freedom-fighter grandmother and parents deeply involved in anti-caste, feminist, and peasant movements.
Over two decades in New York City, she has been an activist, educator, grantmaker, and writer involved in social movements which link the local and the global, police brutality and war, migration and militarization, race and caste, women of color feminism, and global gender justice. She most recently served as the program director for social justice at the J.M. Kaplan Fund, leading grantmaking for criminal justice reform, immigrant rights, and locally-led work in Brownsville, Brooklyn. Prior to that, she was the senior program officer at Brooklyn Community Foundation, where she helped create and implement grant programs through a racial justice lens.
She currently serves on the board of CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities and co-leads the Pooled Fund Advisory Group at Philanthropy Advancing Women’s Human Rights (PAWHR). Through work with the South Asia Solidarity Initiative and the Afghan Women’s Mission, she has been involved in creative projects to link social justice movements between the United States and Asia. She has been featured in media including the Guardian, Al Jazeera, Democracy Now and Women’s Studies Quarterly.
Prachi believes in the vital power of intersectional and international visions and strategies, which resonate across Dalit rights and Black lives, migrant justice and gender justice, to build bottom-up change from the local to the global.