Geeta Pradhan, president of the Cambridge Community Foundation (CCF), draws on her deep experience in philanthropy, urban planning, and community development to address the needs of Cambridge. She led CCF’s transformation from a local grantmaker to an organization that ensures Cambridge is a vibrant, just and equitable city for all. For 107 years, CCF has been there for the community – supporting nonprofits to meet local needs and responding to community crises. Today, it is a data-informed strategic grantmaker, tackling the city’s most intractable problems in partnership with nonprofits and others, the philanthropic home for Cambridge’s generosity, and an influential civic leader.
In 2021 she co-authored the Foundation Equity & Innovation Cities report, highlighting the growing income disparities amidst Cambridge’s growing prosperity. She helped envision and structure the City’s $22 million Rise Up Cambridge, the only city-wide effort to offer a non-lottery cash assistance program and is leading the research that will help make the case for policy change.
Geeta is regularly called upon to speak on issues of poverty and social change, the changing role of philanthropy, and collaborative action. She serves on several public-sector task forces, boards, and committees, including the City of Cambridge’s Youth & Family Policy Council, Community Benefits Advisory Committee and the Rise Up Cambridge Steering Committee. She serves on the boards of the Kendall Square Association, Central Square Business Improvement District, and Philanthropy Massachusetts.
Geeta is a close collaborator of the Cambridge and Greater Boston nonprofit sector. She co-authored two reports on the financial health of the MA nonprofit sector, organized the creation of Massachusetts Nonprofit Network, and facilitated the founding of the Institute of Nonprofit Practice. She previously worked for the Boston Foundation, serving as the associate vice president for programs and co-founded the Boston Indicators Project. Prior to that she worked for the City of Boston as director of Sustainable Boston and assistant director for neighborhood development. A trained artist, she completed her Bachelor’s of Architecture in India and holds a master’s in urban design from the Harvard Graduate School of Design. In 2022, Geeta received the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters from Lesley University, in recognition of her ‘changemaking leadership and dedication to growing the nonprofit ecosystem at every turn.’