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Our Story

AI4ALL co-founders Dr. Fei-Fei Li and Dr. Olga Russakovsky at SAILORS (now Stanford AI4ALL) in 2015

AI4ALL is a US-based nonprofit dedicated to increasing diversity and inclusion in AI education, research, development, and policy.

The idea for AI4ALL originated in early 2015. Dr. Olga Russakovsky, a Stanford University PhD student at the time, approached her advisor, renowned AI researcher Dr. Fei-Fei Li, with an idea for how to create more access for underrepresented people in the field of artificial intelligence. Later that year, along with Dr. Rick Sommer–Executive Director of Stanford Pre-Collegiate Studies–the trio founded SAILORS. This program would be the first of its kind: a summer outreach program for high school girls to learn about human-centered AI.

Seeing the success and impact of SAILORS when his daughter Neha attended in 2016, Rab Govil joined the trio, contributing resources and experience starting and scaling companies, and helping craft the strategy to found AI4ALL as a national nonprofit with the mission to make AI more diverse and inclusive. Li, Russakovsky, Sommer, and Govil became founding board members. In 2017, with funding from Melinda Gates’ Pivotal Ventures, Jensen Huang, and Lori Huang, the four founding board members were able to build a team to bring their vision to reality. Tess Posner, a social entrepreneur with extensive experience in forging career pathways for underrepresented groups, joined AI4ALL as CEO.

AI4ALL tripled its university partnerships in 2018, launching summer programs at Boston University, Carnegie Mellon University, Princeton University, and Simon Fraser University. These programs ran alongside the existing Stanford University and University of California – Berkeley programs. In 2018, AI4ALL Summer Programs educated 150 people of color, young women, and low-income high schoolers. This diverse student body graduated to become the next generation of AI leaders. These leaders are AI4ALL’s Changemakers in AI.

Princeton AI4ALL 2018 cohort on the Washington, D.C. AI policy field trip

Changemakers in AI is AI4ALL’s alumni community. This community has access to lifelong support, mentorship, grants, and other opportunities, which will help students underrepresented in technical careers to enter and persist in the AI field.

2018 also saw the addition of Dr. Telle Whitney to AI4ALL’s Board of Directors. Dr. Whitney brings extensive experience as a computer scientist and as former CEO and President of AnitaB.org.

AI4ALL is a team of multidisciplinary experts. Our curriculum is developed in-house by experts who have experience with CS and AI education, with the support of advisors who are leaders in academia and industry. Our team brings to the table experience leading large-scale international organizations like Girls Who Code, TechHire, and Black Girls CODE; running community-based teaching initiatives; and providing access into tech for people of all ages who are underrepresented in tech.

In 2019, AI4ALL expanded our Summer Programs to 11 university sites and launched AI4ALL Open Learning. In 2020, AI4ALL expanded our Summer Programs to 16 sites and launched AI4ALL College Pathways. Find out how you can support our work or read more about our impact.