Rajiv Vinnakota, Co-Founder

Raj Vinnakota is president of the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation, effective July 1, 2019.  He is currently working on a project for a group of institutional funders to map the general civic education space, in order to better understand the level and types of resources currently out there and to help everyone working in the field identify promising areas for growth and increased impact. 

Raj is former executive vice president at the Aspen Institute, founding the Youth & Engagement Programs division.  The thrust of Raj’s work was developing young citizens who care as much about the direction of their communities as their own self-interest (Aristotle’s civic virtue).  Prior to joining the Aspen Institute, Raj was the co-founder and CEO of The SEED Foundation, a non-profit managing the nation’s first network of public, college-preparatory boarding schools for underserved children.  Raj attended Princeton University, from which he received a degree in Molecular Biology, as well as certificate of studies from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public Policy. 

Raj is a board director for a public company, Colfax Corporation (NYSE: CFX). He is a former trustee and executive committee member for Princeton University, former national chair of its annual giving committee, and former executive committee member for its Aspire capital campaign.  In 2009, he received the Woodrow Wilson Award, the highest honor that Princeton bestows on an undergraduate alumnus. Raj is an Echoing Green fellow and an Ashoka fellow. He is married and has one daughter and one cat. He loves basketball, working out, and learning from his daughter.