Vice President, Program Investments
As the Vice President of Program Investments, Chaula Gupta is responsible for managing a team dedicated to identifying, investing in, and scaling organizations and programs that grow the number of high-performing public schools in Chicago.
Chaula brings more than a decade of experience in social innovation, most recently as the founding Managing Director of Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation Initiative at Teach For America. She built partnerships with incubators, donors and seed investors across the country and helped alumni entrepreneurs raise more than $10 million collectively to launch new social ventures that tackle entrenched problems in education. Under her leadership, the social entrepreneurship team launched a new Social Innovation Award for early-stage seed investments, coached education entrepreneurs to win prestigious fellowships like Echoing Green and Mind Trust, and increased the share of alumni entrepreneurs featured in Forbes 30 Under 30 in Education from zero to 20 percent annually.
Chaula began her career at Ashoka Innovators for the Public where she helped select social entrepreneurs in the United States and India, ran global staff recruitment and analyzed appropriate technology innovations for social problems. Early in her career, Chaula conducted research on small-arms disarmament at the Geneva-based UN Institute for Disarmament Research and co-authored a US government study on nuclear terrorism while working at the Center for Nonproliferation Studies.
Chaula serves on the board of GirlTrek, a national movement that inspires and supports thousands of Black women to live their healthiest, most fulfilled lives – simply by walking. She also serves on the advisory board of Arbor Brothers, speaks on social innovation, runs design-thinking workshops, and acts as a judge for several social entrepreneurship fellowships and business plan competitions. She holds a master’s degree in international relations from Syracuse University and received her bachelor’s degree in telecommunications engineering from Mumbai University. Chaula lives in Chicago with her husband Nick Gupta, a management consultant, and children Nirvan and Neeya.