Kara Dukakis

Kara Dukakis is Senior Vice President for the Strong Families and Early Learning Program Area at The Opportunity Institute, which includes the early childhood and working families policy portfolio, and Director of Too Small to Fail. Previously based at Next Generation, Too Small to Fail is a joint initiative with the Clinton Foundation, which seeks to help parents and businesses take meaningful actions to improve the health and well-being of America’s youngest children, ages zero to five, and prepare them to succeed in the 21st century. Kara oversees the strategic direction of Too Small to Fail, with an emphasis on the place-based (cities) strategy, scaling, and evaluation. Kara’s background includes a focus on early childhood, K-12, and postsecondary education policy, as well as child welfare and mental health policy and practice. Prior to joining Next Generation and The Opportunity Institute, Kara was the Associate Director and a Senior Community Engagement Associate at the John W. Gardner Center for Youth and Their Communities at Stanford University, where she directed the Center’s community engagement work. She also led a multi-year initiative on college readiness indicators, and a review of best practices for college access and completion among young men of color. Earlier in her career, Kara was Chair of the San Francisco First 5 Commission and worked at Children Now. She received her B.A. from Brown University and a Master's in Social Welfare from UC Berkeley.