Building Markets Names Dr. Radha Rajkotia as Next Chief Executive Officer
New York, July 28, 2022 – Building Markets is pleased to announce it has named Dr. Radha Rajkotia as its new Chief Executive Officer. Rajkotia brings a wealth of leadership experience in humanitarian and economic development work, along with a passion for impact and for making tangible improvements in the way that aid is delivered on the ground. She succeeds Jennifer Holt, who led the organization as CEO for seven years.
“I am delighted to join Building Markets as its new CEO. Small businesses are the driving force behind developing economies, yet they face significant network and information barriers to growth,” said Rajkotia. “Building Markets offers a data-driven and technology-based approach to accelerating the impact of small businesses — not only in terms of the goods and services that they provide, but also through the jobs that they create and the ripple effects for business owners and their families. It is an honor to lead the global Building Markets team in this next phase of growth.”
Prior to Building Markets, Rajkotia held the position of Chief Research and Policy Officer at Innovations for Poverty Action, where she led the development and implementation of IPA’s strategy to translate evidence into practice and policy across 22 countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
“In addition to her sterling credentials, Radha has served on our Board of Directors for several years and has been instrumental in shaping a shared vision to drive transformative economic and social impact for whole communities,” said Ben Cushman, Chair of Building Markets’ Board of Directors. “The full Board and senior management team share my enthusiasm for Radha’s leadership and partnership that will take us into the next phase of organizational growth and scale the reach and impact of our important work.”
Before joining Innovations for Poverty Action, Rajkotia headed the Economic Recovery and Development unit at the International Rescue Committee. Throughout her career, she has been a leader in using research to answer questions that can help influence global-level policy and programs. She has written and commissioned numerous papers on financial sector strengthening, employment creation, and cash transfer programming, and sits on the boards of the Cash Learning Partnership (CALP), the Center for Economic Opportunity, and Asphaleia.
Rajkotia earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Birmingham and completed her postgraduate education at the University of Sussex, with a Ph.D. in Refugee Studies (Geography), an MA in Migration Studies, and an MSc in Social Research Methods. She is a Senior Policy Fellow at the Henry Leir Institute for Human Security at Tufts University and an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University.
Rajkotia will assume the role of Chief Executive Officer on August 15, 2022.
About Building Markets
Building Markets unleashes the transformational power of small businesses to address pressing social challenges by driving job creation and inclusive growth. Current examples of its work include facilitating refugee livelihoods and assimilation into the private sector in Türkiye, and standing up an environmental impact measurement tool and circular economy training program in Myanmar. Founded in 2004, the organization finds, builds, and connects competitive local businesses to supply chains and investment. Utilizing this model, Building Markets has supported more than 26,700 businesses in winning $1.36 billion in contracts and $21 million in loans, and has helped create over 73,500 jobs across diverse markets like Türkiye, Jordan, Myanmar, Afghanistan, Liberia, and Haiti. Learn more at buildingmarkets.org.
For more information or to schedule interviews, contact Elizabeth Brown at [email protected].
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