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St. Anthony Foundation Board Member and Chief Operating Officer at Salesforce Ventures, Khushboo Patel Leads with Gratitude for the Trailblazers Who Paved the Way for the Next Generation

March 7, 2023

Throughout March, St. Anthony Foundation is celebrating National Women’s History Month by highlighting the vital role of women who share their time and talent with the foundation

1. Tell us a little bit about you and your relationship to St. Anthony’s.

I first learned about St. Anthony Foundation from a friend who served on the board, Spencer Chavez. After hearing about the foundation’s work serving those most in need and meeting CEO, Nils Behnke, I joined the board finance committee.

I feel fortunate to now serve on the board. Working in the corporate world, our problems are primarily transactional. After I joined the St. Anthony’s meetings, I could see that our problems are not problems anymore. It really puts things in perspective, and I feel blessed to be in a place of privilege with a supportive family, a rewarding career, and a home. The problems faced by those served by the foundation are the real deal.

2. What does Women’s History Month mean to you?

I like that with Women’s History Month, we have created an intentional way of celebrating women. This is our opportunity to raise awareness and to elevate women who are just starting their careers and need advice as they navigate their journey personally or professionally.

3. Is there one or are there a few women who have inspired or currently inspire you?

It might sound cliché but of course, I am inspired by all the women I am surrounded by in my personal life – whether it be my mom or mother-in-law, or friends. They have faced challenges, particularly the older generations of women. They had to deal with more barriers and learn to be patient. Because of them, we now have the privilege of not needing as much patience. We can be more assertive. They paved the way for us. I have long admired and aspire to emulate Amy Weaver, President and Chief Financial Officer at Salesforce. She is a fantastic leader and woman in her own right. The way she leads with empathy really resonates with me.

4. Which of the organization’s five values do you most enjoy practicing? Personalism, gratitude, community, justice, or healing?

The value that stands out the most for me is community. I am a child of immigrant parents. When they immigrated from India back in early 90s, they left all their family back home. Our community became those we got to know in a new country, and they helped us build our lives and a good foundation. I grew up in New Jersey and now live in California.

“No matter where you live, building that community is so important to keep you grounded.”

Khushboo Patel

In 1950 in response to the needs of those experiencing homelessness in the Tenderloin, St. Anthony’s was founded by Franciscan Friars, a Catholic order of men inspired by St. Francis of Assisi and committed to “love thy neighbor.” The worldwide Franciscan movement is committed to the poor and vulnerable, to caring for creation, and to seeing the good in every individual. We welcome all—from any religion or worldview—who wish to join us in making the world a more compassionate and just place. Service with St. Anthony’s is more than volunteerism; it’s an opportunity to connect with your community through shared moments of compassion and understanding. Learn more about volunteer opportunities here.

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