Shireen Zaman is a program officer on the BUILD team, working to advance the foundation’s efforts to support and develop stronger, sustainable, and more effective social justice organizations and networks across the globe. Shireen has more than two decades of experience in the philanthropic and nonprofit sector, spearheading organizational transformation, resource development, and program management at a variety of organizations.

Prior to joining the Ford Foundation, she was the director of the RISE Together Fund, a donor collaborative at the Proteus Fund. At RTF, she worked to identify, invest in and build the capacity of grassroots organizations from Black/African, Arab, Middle Eastern, Muslim and South Asian communities in the US. She was a founding member and served on the advisory council of the Emergent Fund, a pooled fund dedicated to supporting US grassroots organizing and power building in communities of color, including Black, Indigenous communities. Prior to her work in philanthropy, Shireen was the executive director of the Institute for Social Policy and Understanding, where she led the strategic expansion of a Michigan-founded think tank into the Washington, DC policy space. She was also the director of the Middle East and North Africa program at Vital Voices Global Partnership where she partnered with women leaders across the region to support their work in the areas of human rights, health and political leadership.

Shireen was recognized as a White House Champion of Change for her work as an Asian-American woman leader. She holds a BA in human development from Boston College and an MA from the School of International Service at American University. She studied Arabic at the American University in Cairo and is currently completing a coaching certification program through Coaching for Healing, Justice and Liberation.