Fiona Kanagasingam joined the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF, the Foundation) in 2022 as the Foundation’s first vice president, equity and culture. She is a key member of the Foundation’s leadership team, reporting to the president and CEO, responsible for internally advancing RWJF's mission and vision by building the strategy for and operationalizing equity, diversity, and inclusion Foundationwide.
Fiona comes to RWJF with more than 20 years of organizational development and equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) experience, and has managed change and scaled impact across multiple sectors as both a consultant and executive leader. In a former executive role, she served as the chief equity and learning officer at Planned Parenthood of Greater New York, where she designed and operationalized a rigorous and measurable strategy for the organization’s transformation process to center equity, especially racial equity, across all operations, programs, and services. In this role, she set and executed a vision and strategy for the organizational equity transformation process; launched a comprehensive Equity School for staff and managers; and implemented systemic changes that transformed all aspects of talent management, patient safety and care, and fundraising and development, among other areas.
As a consultant, she has advised numerous nonprofits, foundations, and funder collaboratives looking to build the will, skill, and alignment for organizational change and social justice. She has partnered with these organizations through the BIPOC Project, an organization she co-founded in 2016 to build authentic and lasting solidarity among Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC), to undo Native erasure and anti-Black racism, and to ensure these focus areas are conditions for sustainable racial justice work within organizations and movement spaces.
This work builds on prior experiences at the intersection of leadership development, organizational transformation, and social justice. As director of consulting at Community Resource Exchange (CRE), New York City’s premier nonprofit consulting firm for groups fighting poverty and advancing social justice, Kanagasingam built and led the firm’s Equity and Inclusion practice, now one of its largest practices, to guide client organizations including government agencies, advocacy groups, funders, coalitions, and community-based organizations in shaping more equitable systems and cultures. She also launched CRE’s own internal racial equity transformation process, leading to radical shifts in the composition of leadership and staff, and in organizational systems from talent management to capacity-building.
Within higher education, as acting dean and director of leadership and global citizenship at Yale-NUS in Singapore, she introduced Inter-Group Dialogue, a structured methodology to explore social group identity, conflict, community, and social justice—a first in a country with a heavily circumscribed discourse on race and identity. She was also managing consultant at the Gallup Organization, where she advised large global corporations on organizational assessment and strategic change.
Fiona received her Executive Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Georgetown University, her master’s degree in Counseling from Monash University, Victoria, Australia, and her bachelor’s degree in Comparative Politics, with a concentration in Women’s and Gender Studies, from Columbia University.
Born in Singapore, Fiona also calls Brooklyn, N.Y., where she lives with her partner, Grace, home. She is most joyful when eating spicy food and dreaming of our collective liberation.