Seasoned executive with public and private sector experience to lead organization into the future
After a months long national search process, Techbridge is proud to announce the appointment of Nikole Collins-Puri as chief executive officer/executive director, effective July 18. Collins-Puri succeeds Techbridge founder and CEO, Dr. Linda Kekelis, who retired in December.
"Nikole's leadership and proven track record working with women and girls around economic empowerment gives her a unique and powerful perspective on Techbridge's mission," said Kim Ondreck Carim, Chair of Techbridge's National Board of Directors. "I am confident that her broad experience and passion will allow us to lead the organization and the girls we serve well into the future."
Ms. Collins-Puri has deep experience in strategy, leadership, fund development and implementing ideas that advance progress for girls, women and communities of color. She comes to Techbridge from the Women's Foundation of California, where she served as Chief Strategist of Philanthropic Initiatives. In this role, she led the Women's Economic Mobility initiative to ensure low-income women have skills and opportunities to provide for their families and future. Prior to this position, she held senior roles at College Board and AT&T, where she scaled a Diversity and Inclusion initiative for 60,000 global employees, resulting in the company's #2 position of most diverse companies for Diversity Inc. magazine. It was during these years that Ms. Collins-Puri saw the importance of engaging girls in the field of STEM.
"I am excited and humbled to lead Techbridge in its next chapter," said Ms. Collins-Puri. "Increasing the number of girls who pursue a career in STEM is not only great for innovation within the field but critical to the nation's competitive position in the world. If girls are left behind in STEM, the nation will continue to be left behind. And for Techbridge - this is not an option."
Looking ahead to the future of Techbridge, Ms. Collins-Puri reflects, "Techbridge is at the forefront of shifting the national conversation about girls in STEM. We have the research, practice, expertise and connection to our community to scale and inform systems and strategies that will move girls from pipeline to position of power within the STEM field. I am honored to build upon the 16 years of dedication and success that Techbridge has achieved and lead the organization through its next chapter."
Nikole received her BA from the University of South Florida and MPA from Baruch College in New York. She resides in Oakland, CA with her husband, Ashwin and son, Xavier.
The search for the CEO began in January 2016 and was led by a team from Olive Grove, a consulting firm specializing in the nonprofit and philanthropic fields.