Interim Executive Director
Swamini Adityananda Saraswati has served as a URI Global Trustee since 2014, and was appointed Interim Executive Director for URI in 2021. With 30 years of nonprofit and communications experience, she brings a strong background in interfaith leadership, as well as expertise in policy advocacy, public relations, partnership development, campaigning, strategic planning, and fundraising.
She began her career as a broadcast television producer/writer/director for networks including Discovery International, PBS, ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC, CBC and the TV Guide Channel. She later served as Director of Communications and Development for a crucial interfaith non-profit agency which resettles refugees and violence survivors from around the world. Witnessing the intense suffering of countless people, she went on to co-found the Pan-African Association, which has enabled tens of thousands of survivors of war, hunger, genocide, persecution, and torture from across the world to survive and thrive for over 17 years.
Later in her career, she served as a Director and United Nations Relations Manager for a large international nonprofit, often working within the UN Secretariat, World Bank and IMF on issues including water scarcity, world hunger, climate change, education, HIV/AIDS, conflict resolution, disaster risk reduction and response, and women’s rights. She furthermore helped spearhead anti-poverty campaigns in the United States, Africa and Asia. Swamini also was instrumental in the development of the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance (GIWA), which was launched at UNICEF World Headquarters, in partnership with UNICEF, the Government of the Netherlands, and USAID. She was responsible for its strategic plans, development, partnerships, fundraising, and programmes.