DMI Blog


Penny Abeywardena

Prior to joining DMI as the Director of Strategic Relations, Penny was the Development Program Officer at the Funding Exchange, where she managed donor advised funds, and actively participated in developing fundraising and grantmaking strategies. She has worked in both development and program areas for Human Rights Watch, the Fund for Global Human Rights and UNICEF-Jordan. Penny was the editor of Rights News, an annual publication by the Center for the Study of Human Rights at Columbia University from 2004-2006. Most recently, Penny served on the planning committee for the 2005 & 2006 "Making Money Make Change" retreat and the advisory council for the 2006 "Creating Change Through Family Philanthropy" conference - both of these national gatherings are for young people with wealth committed to supporting social justice. Penny serves on the Board of Resource Generation and Sakhi for South Asian Women. She is also a mentor for Third Wave Foundation's Why Give program for young women of color and transgender youth.

Penny earned a BA in Political Science with a minor in Business Administration from the University of Southern California. In 2004, she completed her Master in International Affairs at Columbia University, where she studied economic & political development and non-profit management. She concurrently completed Columbia's Fundraising Management program.

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