Rupa Balasubramanian 

Senior VP, Pluralist Leadership

Rupa has spent nearly twenty years working at the intersection of philanthropy, policy advocacy and social movements. She began her career in politics and crisis management, working in the Press Secretary’s office at the White House during the Clinton Administration and then, at Hill & Knowlton, Inc., a leading international communications firm. Recognizing that in order to change systems, private funding must invest in political leadership, policy advocacy, and movement infrastructure, Rupa joined a philanthropic and political consulting firm founded by progressive activist and strategist, Margery Tabankin. At Margery Tabankin & Associates, Rupa spent a decade developing and launching innovative strategies for social change for individuals, families and organizations looking to deploy resources to address structural inequality.

In the summer of 2013, Rupa helped launch Fundamental, a boutique philanthropic consultancy, where she helped individuals in the creative and entertainment community  deploy millions of dollars to support organizations focused on education, women’s health, the environment, civic engagement, and civil rights at the local, state, and national levels. She worked with Barbra Streisand and Cedars-Sinai Medical Center to create the Women’s Heart Alliance, a national non-profit organization aimed at increasing the awareness of women’s heart disease, the number one killer of women in the United States. Since its inception in 2014, the Women’s Heart Alliance has advanced work to ensure women’s full representation in biomedical studies and clinical trials, in addition to continuing to educate policy makers and the public on the importance of sex-specific medical research.  

Rupa graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara and earned her Masters degree in Public Administration at the University of Southern California’s School of Policy, Planning and Development. She serves on the board of directors of, Planned Parenthood Los Angeles, and Demos, a think tank of the progressive movement.