Ankita Patel

Senior Manager, Public Policy and Advocacy

As an Indian immigrant from Zambia, Ankita has had exposure to social and economic inequities affecting people, families and communities. She has dedicated her career to transforming public policy and advocacy efforts to addressing those inequities so that community leaders and communities can create bold visions for change and work towards making a sustainable impact. Ankita brings her life experiences, a law degree from Seattle University School of Law, and over a decade of experience working on various issues including, gender-based violence, poverty alleviation, and immigrant justice to her role as Philanthropy Northwest’s Public Policy and Advocacy Manager. Her strong leadership, team-building and relationship skills have allowed her to successfully build collaborative cross-sector partnerships and engage closely with communities to improve systems and create safe, thriving environments. In addition to her work with Philanthropy Northwest, she is currently appointed as a Commissioner for the City of Seattle’s Immigrant and Refugee Commission.

Ankita enjoys photography and was featured as one of the top five South Asian artists at the Seattle Asian Art Museum in the 2010 South Asian Film Festival, Tasveer. She recently took up snowboarding and is constantly humbled by 5-year-olds who magically find ways to stay upright.


Ankita Patel's blog posts

February 6, 2020

2020 is a big year for us – as individuals, as organizations and communities, and as a democracy. We all have the opportunity to show up and take action to ensure a more reflective, equitable and representative democracy across our vibrant Northwest communities. more »

August 28, 2019

Aneelah Afzali and Masih Fouladi are co-contributors to this post

When talking about how historical oppression continues to impact communities today, it’s difficult to understand where to begin or how to advance our work. At Philanthropy Northwest, our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion framework and commitment helps us to understand when and how to enter the conversation with our communities.

Our Muslim communities — which are some of the fastest-growing in the country — are subjected to oppression, discrimination and indignities, otherwise known as Islamophobia. Muslims encounter these acts of injustice through a variety of individual and institutional mechanisms, such as experiencing bias incidents and hate crimes, facing discrimination when applying for jobs or securing housing, seeing children and loved ones bullied at school or being categorically restricted or banned from travel and targeted for surveillance. At its worst, Islamophobia has led to deadly consequences, not just for Muslims, but for other communities as well. more »

April 12, 2019

Philanthropy Northwest is actively engaged in partnering with members and stakeholders across our region to ensure a robust and accurate count during the 2020 Census. Personally, I am incredibly excited about the launch of the Washington Census Equity Fund, and all the work that has gone into ensuring that communities can mobilize quickly and efficiently by our philanthropic partners. Now we are pleased to announce the opening of the request for proposals to apply for census funding in Washington state. more »