Shikha Bhatnagar

Global Social Impact Consultant

Over seventeen years of programming, policy analysis, advocacy, and business development experience across sectors with stakeholders on critical global issues such as economic & political development, education, health, security, diversity & inclusion, and civil society (including women's rights).


  • Seventeen years of advocacy, programming and policy experience, working across sectors on issues such as economic development, education, social justice, civil society, and conflict resolution. 
  • Represented U.S. industry in market access cases and bilateral trade negotiations at U.S. Department of Commerce International Trade Administration. Presidential Management Fellow, 2001-2003.
  • Served in executive roles with internationally focused non-profit organizations, and led efforts to scale and increase impact. Strong business development skills: raised nearly $3 million from diversity of donors in U.S. and abroad.
  • Strong knowledge, passion, and work experience in women’s/gender issues in the US and globally, including work with the UN Program for Women (UNIFEM). Understanding of and interest in the intersection of critical global challenges, such as education, labor, economic development, and technology with gender.  
  • International work: Worked and lived in India as start-up team manager for education-related non-profit and launched US office of world’s largest NGO-run school lunch program. Traveled to South Pacific region to conduct gender and trade assessment for UNIFEM. Designed and launched civil society project in Pakistan. At Department of Commerce, negotiated bilateral trade agreements and addressed trade barriers in Middle East/North Africa and Asia. 
  • Strong management skills in entrepreneurial environments: Strategic planning and development of measures for impact.  Financial management of organizational and project budgets. Worked at both macro (national and international level) and at grassroots levels; ability to understand and analyze both the broad framework and specific details. 
  • Languages: English (native), Hindi (fluent), French (proficient), Urdu (conversational), Spanish (basic), Punjabi (basic)  
  • US Citizen, with authorization to work in India (Overseas Citizen of India visa holder) 
  • US Government Security Clearance:  Secret (inactive)
  • Trainings:
    • Domestic Violence Bilingual Advocacy Training, Asian Pacific Islander Domestic Violence Resource Project (March, 2014)
    • Coaches Training Institute (CTI) Co-Active Coaching Fundamentals Course (April, 2014)  



Director of Development

Led sustainable donor engagement strategy for nonprofit advocating for the strengthening of diversity and inclusion practices within the legal profession.

·       Oversaw portfolio of corporate donors to establish and sustain ongoing relations. Cultivated new prospects, with a focus on expanding corporate portfolio. Maintained relationships with sponsoring organizations to promote and maintain funding. Oversaw and participated in donor cultivation events and other special events.

·       Worked closely with diversity and inclusion leaders from Fortune 1000 companies and top law firms to identify interests and opportunities for collaboration and support for MCCA programs.

·       Led all fundraising efforts. Mobilized Board of Directors and Steering Committees for four major events and raised over $1 million in support and commitments to date from corporate donors. 



Consultant to nonprofit organizations and emerging and established leaders.  Clients included:

  • PLOUGHSHSHARES FUND (, Washington, DC || Assessed Ploughshares Fund’s grantmaking strategy in South Asia. Published findings and recommendations in report for staff and Board.

  • PRIYA'S SHAKTI (, New York, NY || Gender-based violence adviser to multimedia project focusing on gender-based sexual violence in India.

  • GLOBAL YOUTH LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE (, Milwaukee, WI || Successfully executed Jóvenes en Acción and Iraqi Young Leadership Exchange Program in Milwaukee. Oversaw programming and logistics. Served as coordinator for middle-school leadership training program at Earth University in Costa Rica.

  • NASSCOM FOUNDATION, New Delhi, India || Provided oversight on NASSCOM’s National Digital Literacy Mission work, focusing on corporate partnerships for digital literacy centers.

  • SOUTH ASIAN AMERICANS LEADING TOGETHER (SAALT)  (, Takoma Park, MD || Operations consultant at civil rights organization representing South Asian Americans. Wrote, assembled, and made recommendations on SAALT’s policies and procedures, including internal and external communications.

  • 100KIN10 (, New York, NY || Consultant at public-private partnership campaign to recruit and retain 100,000 excellent science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) teachers. Incubated within the Carnegie Corporation of New York. Other partners include the Clinton Global Initiative, Google, and the US Department of Education. Provided programmatic and operational support to 100Kin10 initiative, and supported Annual Partner Summit with external communications, VIP relations, and day of event logistics. Streamlined communications: provided input on redesign of website and fundraising materials, coordinated internal and external communications, and managed social media platforms.


Associate Director, South Asia Center (SAC)

Represented the Atlantic Council, foreign policy think tank, on issues related to South Asia. Oversaw program planning and implementation in consultation with the SAC Director and Council leadership.

  • Executed fundraising activities, including grant reporting, and helped secure over $1,000,000.
  • Managed SAC finances, including project budgets and US and foreign government grants.
  • Established effective relationships with partners in the US and abroad to grow programmatic reach.
  • Implemented and coordinated projects for the SAC on issues including governance and security.
  • Created messages, materials and communications platforms, including web, print and social media.
  • Oversaw planning and execution of over 100 events, including preparing talking points, VIP coordination, and event moderation.


TEACH FOR INDIA (, Pune, MH, India
Executive Director, Pune

Served as startup team manager for Teach For India, non-profit seeking to end educational inequity in India. Ensured local readiness prior to on boarding of additional regional staff, including Fellow placements.

  • Provided thought leadership in the area of Fellow recruitment, and youth learning and education. 
  • Developed program policies and procedures to ensure organization effectiveness and efficiency. 
  • Conducted regular outreach with corporate executives, universities, and low-income school faculty. Secured partnerships for Teach For India that still exist and have helped the program grow. 


Executive Director

Launched U.S. office of Akshaya Patra, the world’s largest non-profit run school lunch program, seeded by and incubated within the Deshpande Foundation, a member of the Clinton Global Initiative. Managed all nationwide operations, raised nearly $2M in first year, and doubled number of children fed through program.  

  • Forged critical partnerships with community leaders, non-profit organizations, and government entities.
  • Oversaw important fiduciary obligations, including adherence to federal and state laws.
  • Mobilized volunteers in Boston, San Francisco, Dallas, Seattle, and New York City with goal of building grassroots movement to create awareness and support for Akshaya Patra and hunger issues in India.
  • Explored and recommended improvements to programmatic strategies for school lunch program.
  • Integrated technology into program’s coordination to ensure efficient and streamlined communication. 


International Trade Specialist, Office of Textiles and Apparel (OTEXA)

Worked with foreign officials and industry representatives on matters related to textiles & apparel trade.

  • Investigated trade barriers, assessed compliance with bilateral & WTO commitments.
  • Participated in trade negotiations: Prepared background information and technical advice, and recommend negotiating positions. 
    • U.S. - Australia Free Trade Agreement, 2003 - 2004
    • U.S. - Bahrain Free Trade Agreement, 2004-2005
    • U.S. - Morocco Free Trade Agreement, 2003 - 2005
    • U.S. - Oman Free Trade Agreement, 2005
    • U.S. - UAE Free Trade Agreement, 2005
    • U.S. - Korea Free Trade Agreement, 2006

Trade Information Center (TIC)

Counseled U.S. businesses on export procedures, foreign import rules and regulations, and promoted U.S. Government export services through trade shows and speaking engagements.

  •  Provided trade-related counseling to U.S. businesses at the TIC, a resource center for U.S. exporters.
  • Promoted U.S. Government export services through trade shows, speaking engagements, briefings, and other outreach events.
  • Congressional Liaison: Provide assistance to Congressional inquiries regarding international trade.
  • Liaison with DOC Task Force on Afghanistan: Created and managed DOC website on “Rebuilding Afghanistan” (; attended inter-agency meetings; and responded to Afghanistan-related inquiries.

Detailee/ Trade Policy Analyst, Office of the Special Textile Negotiator (Special Rotation)

Monitored key policy issues and recommended negotiating positions to Special Textiles Negotiator on issues related to textile and apparel trade policy, such as China safeguards and post-quota integration.



Conducted multiregional assessment of UNIFEM’s program work on gender and trade. Traveled to UNIFEM regional office in Fiji and interviewed senior level government officials, non-governmental organization leaders, and individuals at the local level. Published findings and recommendations in report, and presented to UNIFEM officials.


  • Research Assistant, Education Department, John F. Kennedy Center for the Arts, Present
  • Member, Toastmasters International, Present
  • Member, Association of Fundraising Professionals, Present
  • Bilingual Advocate, Asia Pacific Islander Domestic Violence Resource Project, 2014
  • Consultant, Inaugural Awards Dinner, American Abroad Media, 2013
  • Member, Columbia University’s SIPA Alumni Advisory Council, 2012-Present
  • External grant reviewer, U.S. Institute of Peace, 2011-2013
  • Network Director, Washington, DC, Indus Women Leaders (IWL), 2004-2006
  • Intern, Seva Mandir (Udaipur, Rajasthan, India), 2000
  • Volunteer, Gramin Vikas Vigyan Samiti (Jelu Gagadi, Rajasthan, India), 1998
  • Legislative Intern, Office of Senator Richard Bryan (D-NV), 1996
  • Volunteer, Clinton/Gore Re-election Campaign, 1996
  • Legislative Intern, Senate Democratic Policy Committee (Co-Chaired by Senator Harry Reid (D-NV), 1995


Columbia University, School of International and Public Affairs   New York, NY
Master of International Affairs, 2001
Concentration: Economic & Political Development, Functional focus: gender & development, Regional focus: South Asia

University of Wisconsin   Madison, WI
Bachelor of Arts/Political Science and International Relations, 1997                                                    
Concentrations: U.S. Foreign Policy and Global Security


Powered by Squarespace.Background photograph:Shikha Bhatnagar, copyright 2013