Rashida Petersen


CEO and Founder

1847 Philanthropic

Rashida Petersen is the CEO and Founder of 1847 Philanthropic. The catalyst to establish 1847 Philanthropic emanates from Ms. Petersen’s strong desire to create lasting impact in Africa by bringing the essentials of fundraising to their nonprofit institutions.  

Ms. Petersen’s career has been built on expertise gained from leading major fundraising and development initiatives in Africa as well as expanding U.S. trade and investment in developing countries. Working within the development departments of international nonprofits, she has been responsible for annual funding goals of over $16 million dollars in institutional funding and over $1.3 million dollars cumulative in unrestricted sponsorship dollars. This year 1847 has raised over $25 million dollars for clients in the United States.   

Her steadfast focus on causes with strong community involvement and local impact enabled her to work with some of the major civil rights leaders of our time, including Ambassador Andrew Young, at GoodWorks International, an international management-consulting firm and she served as the vice-president for programs and business development at OIC International, this organization carries the legacy of the late Reverend Leon H. Sullivan. 

Ms. Petersen began her career at the U.S. Department of Commerce, where she served as the East Africa desk officer within the International Trade Administration. Additionally, she served as the acting senior commercial officer with the African Development Bank in Tunis, Tunisia. She was formerly the director of membership and marketing for The Corporate Council on Africa, a trade organization devoted to increasing U.S. trade and investment in Africa. 

Ms. Petersen is a noted speaker on topics related to international development, organizational development and local impact, fundraising, as well as the importance of diversity in international affairs at conferences and events around the world including, Council on Foreign Relations’ Conference on Diversity in International Affairs, SXSW, Skoll World Forum, and Africa 2018 Forum amongst others.  

Ms. Petersen holds an International Business degree from the University of Maryland. She currently serves on the advisory board of the University of Maryland’s Center for Global Business; is a member of Bridge Institute’s Africa Policy Group; active member of the Association of Fundraising Professionals and a mentor for College Bound in Washington, D.C.