Shah has led social impact efforts in academia, government, and the private and philanthropic sectors for over 25 years
The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization, has announced the selection of Indian American Sonal Shah to serve as its second chief executive officer. She will take over on Jan 1, 2023.
Shah, who has worked as the director of the White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation in the Obama administration will be taking over rom Evan Smith, who has run The Tribune since he co-founded it in 2009.
Shah has extensive experience in social innovation and nonprofits, and is currently an interim executive vice president at United Way. She also founded Georgetown University’s Beeck Center for Social Impact and Innovation, as well as The Asian American Foundation.
At the Tribune, Shah “will drive strategy and oversee fundraising, operations and business development, ensuring the financial health and independence of the Trib,” Jim Schachter is the chair of The Texas Tribune’s board of directors, stated.
Under her leadership, Sewell Chan, the Tribune’s editor in chief, will continue to oversee the Tribune’s newsroom and its journalism, which was recently recognized with a National Edward R. Murrow Award.
“With her combination of nonprofit, public sector and private sector experience; her deep understanding of policy and technology; and her passion for building a stronger future for Texas and our country, Sonal Shah is the ideal leader for The Texas Tribune’s next chapter,” Schachter stated.
“And what a foundation she has to build on. Since its launch, the Tribune has raised an impressive $112 million to fund the newsroom’s ambitious reporting, and currently attracts nearly 4 million monthly unique visitors to the destination website, he said. The organization boasts more than 175,000 newsletter subscribers and has 10,000 current members.
Shah, according to her official profile, has launched and led social impact efforts in academia, government, and the private and philanthropic sectors for over 25 years.
She is the Executive Vice President, Worldwide Network Operations, United Way Worldwide, and Founding President, The Asian American Foundation (TAAF), the largest philanthropic effort to serve the Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities.
Prior to TAAF, Shah founded and led Georgetown University’s Beeck Center for Social Impact and Innovation, providing students a first-hand opportunity to work on social impact projects in the public, private, and social sectors.
She served as Deputy Assistant to President Barack Obama and created the White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation
Shah also worked on international development at the Department of Treasury, and led social impact efforts at Google and Goldman Sachs. She serves on the boards of TAAF, Oxfam America, the Century Foundation, and the National Democratic Institute.
In March Shah was named to a new Homeland Security Advisory Council that will help DHS harness technology and innovation to modernize the programs it administers.
Last December, President Joe Biden appointed Shah as a commissioner to the President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders:
Shah grew up in Houston, where she graduated from Alief Hastings High School. She has a BA in economics from the University of Chicago and an MA in economics from Duke University.