Saphira Baker

Lecturer
Education & Training
MPA, Harvard Kennedy School of Government
AB, Brown University

Saphira M. Baker is the founder of Communitas Consulting and Principal Consultant.  Saphira established Communitas Consulting after more than twenty years of experience in senior positions in local government.

Ms. Baker is skilled in facilitating and developing effective cross-sector partnerships, leading strategic and community planning, restructuring and focusing complex organizations, evaluation, and executive coaching. Her subject area expertise includes, health and human services, early childhood development, workforce development, and housing and community development.

Ms. Baker served as Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for Human Services for the City of Richmond, Virginia, between 2005-2008, directed the Commission on Children and Families for the City of Charlottesville and the County of Albemarle, Virginia, between 1998-2005, and launched an Office of Workforce Development for the City of Cambridge, Massachusetts between 1990-1996. She has served as a consultant to national organizations such as NeighborWorks America and Jobs for the Future, as well as regional and statewide philanthropies in the southeast, local Virginia governments, and multiple community-based nonprofit organizations.

Ms. Baker has taught short courses in strategic planning and social justice consulting at UVA for the Batten School since 2012. Her research interests and recent publications are in the areas of public-private partnerships, coalition building, leadership development, and linking evaluation to implementation and capacity building.

Ms. Baker earned her Masters of Public Administration at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and her A.B. at Brown University. Ms. Baker is a member of the Board of Advisors of the University of Virginia Frank S. Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy.