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Kanya Balakrishna            

Co-Founder & CEO of The Future Project; Youth Empowerment & Education Advocate

Kanya Balakrishna is the CEO & Co-founder of The Future Project – one of the country's leading nonprofits dedicated to unlocking the limitless potential of young people. Since 2011, The Future Project has trained and supported more than 50,000 students in dozens of communities to use their passion and purpose to change the world around them.

Prior to launching The Future Project, Kanya served as the chief speechwriter to Dr. Margaret Hamburg while she was Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration. Kanya’s commitment to young people was born out of the decade she spent teaching students at the after-school learning centers her mother, an award-winning educator, started in Memphis, TN. Kanya holds a B.A. in Anthropology from Yale College, where she studied anthropology and served as Managing Editor of the Yale Daily News.

A first-generation immigrant who attended nearly a dozen schools growing up, Kanya has learned first-hand how important it is for young people to discover their power to make change. She leverages this belief in the work she does each day as an organizational leader and advocate for young people.


How Two Young Dreamers (And Their Supporters) Are Changing American Education
As a career coach, I spend every day helping people pursue their highest dreams for their life and work, and make those dreams a reality. Yet there are thousands of detractors in our country who claim that dreaming is for fools.
Be The Hero: Get to Know Kanya Balakrishna's Story
Kanya Balakrishna is the co-founder of The Future Project, an organization committed to helping young people realize their dreams. Founded in September 2011, The Future Project is a national campaign to empower young people to live extraordinary lives of passion and purpose. Fully-embedded in high schools, their mission is to help students understand and set their own goals.

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