Following 16 years of leadership by Founding President Shiv Kumar, Shama Karkal took on the role of CEO in April 2017.
Ever since her involvement with the Golden Gate Regional Centre in the US, where she worked with developmentally disabled children and adults, Shama has focused on channelling her passion for social good into a career. After returning to India in 2004 with a Masters in Social Work from the University of Maryland, Baltimore, she took up meaningful and deep work stints in maternal and child health, first with SAATHI and then in Kushal Foundation, both non-profits.
Shama joined the Swasti family in 2004 as a Mon- itoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL) officer for project Pragati, the largest HIV prevention and empowerment initiative, working with 15,000+ sex workers in Bangalore, India. She is currently the elected chair for the Asia Pacific Alliance for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights and works globally on complex public health challenges.
Shiv Kumar, Founder President says, “ I have full faith that Shama will take Swasti to the next level.”
Along with sectoral experience and leadership, Shama brings to the role a combination of empathy and expertise in human-centered design, project management at scale and resource mobilisation.