White House Highlights Dr. Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg as a “Champion of Change” and Trailblazer in American Diaspora Communities

Posted on January 29, 2012 at 1:11 am by akilidada 5 Comments


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           January 27, 2012

White House Highlights Dr. Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg as a “Champion of Change” and Trailblazer in American Diaspora Communities

WASHINGTON, DC – On Monday, January 30th, the White House will honor Dr. Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg as one of fourteen Champions of Change who are leaders in American Diaspora communities with roots in the Horn of Africa. These leaders are helping to build stronger neighborhoods in communities across the country, and are working to mobilize networks across borders to address global challenges.

The Champions of Change program was created as a part of President Obama’s Winning the Future initiative. Each week, a different sector is highlighted and groups of Champions, ranging from educators to entrepreneurs to community leaders, are recognized for the work they are doing to serve and strengthen their communities.

“These men and women are American leaders we want to celebrate,” said Deputy National Security Advisor Denis McDonough. “We commend the innovative practices, achievements and leadership these change makers bring not only to their communities around this country—but also to the development of and diplomacy with their countries of origin.”

To watch this event live, visit www.whitehouse.gov/live at 3:00 pm ET January 30th.

Working at the intersection of academia and social entrepreneurship, Dr. Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg is passionate about the synergy between rigorous academic analysis and committed social activism. She is the Founder and Executive Director of Akili Dada, a leadership incubator investing in high-achieving young African women from underprivileged backgrounds with a demonstrated passion for social change. Holding a Ph.D. in Political Science, Wanjiru is also an Assistant Professor in the Politics department at the University of San Francisco, where her work centers on the politics of philanthropy, gender, Africa, ethnicity, and democratization, and on the role of technology in social activism.

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5 Comments on "White House Highlights Dr. Wanjiru Kamau-Rutenberg as a “Champion of Change” and Trailblazer in American Diaspora Communities"

  1. Edwin Okong'o · January 30, 2012 at 12:02 am · Reply

    Congratulations, Wanjiru! I told you that after your last milestone the only direction for Akili Dada is upwards!

  2. Jane Drabel · February 3, 2012 at 10:57 pm · Reply

    My, oh, my our Walla Walla “girl” has once again distinguished herself. We are not surprised and oh so proud. Love, Jane and Chuck

  3. DR. Gloria Willingham-Toure · May 20, 2012 at 7:32 am · Reply

    My soul is moved by the work that Dr. Wanjiru Kamau Rutenberg is doing and the difference that is being made in so many lives. The Village P.r.o.j.e.c.t.s (http://www.villageprojects.net) is always looking for stories of African-Americans and African immigrant scholars and practitioners who are mentoring others, who are ‘standing in the gap,’ and who are returning their talents to the underserved in a way that builds the capacity for community success. We applaud Wanjiru! and we hope to meet her one day soon.

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  1. [...] Champions from various sectors, ranging from educators to entrepreneurs. You can read the full press release on Akili Dada’s blog or watch Wanjiru speaking at the [...]

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