Since 2007, Iris Garcia has worked in the field of human rights and social change philanthropy, with extensive experience in grantmaking. As Learning and Impact Program Officer, she coordinates Akonadi’s learning strategies and leads grants management. She also assists in the planning, development, and implementation of Akonadi Foundation’s Rapid Response grantmaking.
Before she joined Akonadi, Iris worked at the Global Fund for Women, where she oversaw the creation and management of the Grants Operations team. During her seven years at the Global Fund, Iris gained expertise in managing complex grantmaking processes and systems, engaged in learning and evaluation practices, and explored how philanthropy can support movement-building. Her approach to grants management centers on the alignment between organizational systems and social justice values. Her previous professional experience includes work with the New Field Foundation and International Development Exchange.
A Bay Area native, Iris was 13 when she attended her first protest, one against California’s anti-immigrant Proposition 187. Her consciousness of social injustice and inequality was sharpened at UC Berkeley, where she studied International Development. Her professional life has focused on mobilizing resources for collective activism that advances human rights and social change around the world. She sees her work at Akonadi as a way to continue her deep commitment to supporting diverse organizations and movements that address systemic injustice.
Outside of work, you can find Iris at a local dance studio, studying various forms of global street dance. She believes deeply in the transformative power of dance and derives much joy from her dance community.
Iris can be reached at Iris [at] akonadi.org or at (510) 663-3867 x301.