AJ Dahiya is a philanthropic leader with nearly a decade of monastic service and the Chief Vision Officer of The Pollination Project, a global community of 4,000+ grassroots volunteer leaders in over 125 countries.
Born into a working-class immigrant family from India, AJ quickly internalized a sentiment that would dictate both his personal and professional lives for decades: the real privilege in life is the privilege of service.
Growing up in a diverse and disparate environment in the outskirts of London, AJ saw that it wasn’t in material things that people found happiness, but through community and in serving others.
AJ’s deep spiritual calling led him to become ordained as a monastic in his late teens, where he spent years detached from material possessions and in deep reflection on how to realize a healthy, equal, and just society.
AJ transitioned out of monastic life to apply his commitment to service and belief in the power of the individual to lead a number of mission-driven organizations, including HOPE Not Hate USA and The Bhakti Center, a spiritual culture center in New York City.
AJ is deeply driven by the simple, yet impactful concept that little things matter in all aspects of life, especially in philanthropy.
As the Chief Vision Officer at The Pollination Project, AJ oversees the daily giving of $1,000 microgrants to grassroots community leaders around the world. By equipping individuals with both the initial funding and belief that they can solve society’s most pressing challenges, AJ is expanding the walls of philanthropy and empowering individuals to make a difference.
AJ is committed to challenging the status quo of philanthropy by encouraging grantmaking at the individual level, to ensuring that grantmaking is more equitable and accessible to grassroots leaders, and to creating a kinder, more compassionate world through service.