AI4ALL is a US-based nonprofit dedicated to increasing diversity and inclusion in AI education, research, development, and policy. As of December 2022, AI4ALL has impacted over 10,000 people in all 50 states and around the world through our programs.
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 people from marginalized 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 young people from groups historically excluded from AI. This diverse student body graduated to become the next generation of AI leaders. These leaders are AI4ALL’s Changemakers in AI.
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.
In 2019, AI4ALL expanded our Summer Programs to 11 university sites and launched AI4ALL Open Learning, free, approachable AI curriculum for high school teachers to use in classrooms of all subject areas. James Beck, COO of Mayfield Fund joined AI4ALL’s board of directors.
In 2020, AI4ALL expanded our Summer Programs to 16 sites and launched AI4ALL College Pathways, an initiative designed to increase entrance and persistence in AI for college students. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, all AI4ALL programs were temporarily transitioned to virtual programs.
In 2022, Tess Posner stepped down as AI4ALL’s founding CEO and Emily Reid, formerly AI4ALL’s VP of Open Learning, stepped into the role of CEO. Emily has led the organization through a strategic refocusing to best utilize the organization’s resources during the economic downturn. This refocusing has resulted in AI4ALL investing heavily in our programming that guides college-age students to attain their first internships in AI, and putting our programming for high school students–including Summer Programs and the Open Learning teacher community–on hiatus. College Pathways continues to grow, partnering with 16 colleges and universities across the US to support college students who might not otherwise have considered pursuing AI as they develop the skills and networks that will help them succeed in the field.