sapna sopori | founder & ceo, sapna strategies
I was born in Arizona as a first generation Indian-American, raised by a single-mother whose own challenges and opportunities in this country shaped my understanding of the intersection between race, gender, and immigrant-status.
I have spent 20 years working in the social sector. As a leader, educator, and activist, I work with organizations to decolonize their programs to ensure that the good work they hope to do in the world is not undermined by how they do it.
In my personal time, I am a Senior Fellow with the Environmental Leadership Program and have facilitated their Fellows of Color Affinity Group. In 2017, I was also honored with the Kitsap YWCA’s Mission Award for Eliminating Racism and Empowering Women.
I have been so fortunate to have all of these life experiences as a result of the generosity, courage, and support of those around me, and with every action I take, I strive honor my community’s belief in me.
my consultation style
I help organizations live into their beliefs. I help organizations examine the disconnect between their intentions and their actions.
I lead with race. When we lead with race, we stop telling those most impacted by racist systems that their continued harm is acceptable in order to maintain the comfort of those least impacted.
I disrupt. This involves decoding pretty words, examining the assumptions in the room, and getting used to being uncomfortable.
I work on the structures that guide individuals. To use a stream metaphor, just because an individual fish wants to go upstream doesn’t mean it will be successful. I help change the flow of the water to propel the fish and get them to where they want to go faster and more easily.
I work with teams rather than entire organizations. When I work with a team that is already bought into justice and wants to push it forward, we amplify the voices of the change we want to make rather than slow it down to “bring everyone along.”
I build skills and capacity on these teams. I help teams continue to think critically from a racial justice lens even after my contract is done, to keep developing and implementing actions that center the voices of those most impacted, and to work with other teams to build their skills and capacity over time.
I am like a personal trainer, which means teams will do more with me, not less. We don’t hire personal trainers to lighten our loads; instead, they redesign our workouts to be more impactful and help us develop the stamina to reach our stretch goals.
Want to learn more about my style? Reach out to me at email@example.com!
“As the point person working with Sapna from my organization, I have been incredibly impressed with her knowledge, facilitation, adaptability, and relatability in the Racial Equity trainings and team building process on which we have embarked. Sapna’s guidance and oversight for our team development and goal setting process has been crucial towards our success. The thorough research and planning time Sapna dedicates to each session makes every minute spent with her valuable. A few impactful, well-facilitated trainings with Sapna has set us on the course towards building out a racial equity statement and starting the process to meet our long term equity goals. I highly recommend Sapna Sopori as a DEI consultant that is able to adapt to each organization’s needs and help them efficiently set and achieve equity goals.”
Nikki Wolf | King Conservation District