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Speaker Profile: Toby Chaudhuri

Toby Chaudhuri, former communications strategist, to speak at Rise Above conference on Sunday 1/22

Toby Chaudhuri, former communications strategist, is scheduled to speak at the Rise Above conference on Sunday, January 22, 2017.

Toby Chaudhuri worked with President Obama’s Administration, where he advised the White House’s race-based Initiatives and democracy and governance projects around the world for the U.S. State Department.
Chaudhuri is co-founder of SocialxDesign, a strategy consulting firm dedicated to bridging the worlds of social movements, online engagement and offline experience. With offices in Silicon Valley, San Francisco, and Washington D.C., Chaudhuri helps NGOs, governments and businesses to grow by deliberately empowering the people they serve. His clients have included major membership organizations like the AARP, PBS and historic educational institutions like Morehouse College.
Chaudhuri has managed more than $100 million in state and federal campaigns in the U.S. and abroad and has worked at the helm of national media operations. He worked hard to protect children as civil rights leader Marian Wright Edelman’s spokesman and media strategist at the Children’s Defense Fund; took on corporate polluters to provide safe drinking water and clean air as a political appointee to President Bill Clinton; and worked to elect several principled state and federal candidates including serving as deputy press secretary to Vice President Al Gore's 2000 presidential campaign. He also helped re-elect Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, in major upset elections.


Chaudhuri directed several campaigns to enact major economic, energy, health care and education reforms. While at the Campaign for America’s Future, he helped create the Apollo Alliance, which introduced the idea of investing in clean energy to produce a new generation of high-skilled American jobs into the national debate. He helped lead the Campaign for College Affordability, which helped pass the largest federal student aid package since the G.I. Bill and he helped build the Health Care for America Now coalition that made Yale University Professor Jacob Hacker’s plan to have a public health insurance option compete with private insurers famous in the recent health care debate.


Chaudhuri is also the former chair of APIAVote, the largest mobilizing force of Asian American and Pacific Islander power. He’s worked hard to promote civic engagement, leading a campaign to turn out tens of thousands of Massachusetts Asian American voters in the 2002 midterm election. The program he developed was adapted to engage more than a million South Asian American voters across the country in the 2004, 2008 and 2012 elections. Since then, he has worked with international development organizations and the State Department to strengthen democracy and civil societies in South Asia and to promote economic development and democratic governance in the Middle East and North Africa.

Chaudhuri has received several accolades for his work, including the American Association of Political Scientists’ Pollie Award, Campaigns & Elections Magazine’s Rising Star Award and the highly-coveted Reed Award and India Abroad’s Community Service Award. He has appeared in many major daily newspapers, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune and The Times of India and as a commentator on National Public Radio, the BBC, MSNBC, CNN and Al-Jazeera English.

He holds a BA Mathematics and Economics, Umass. Fellow at London School of Economics and Indian Institute of Technology.

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