Creative Collaborations supports progressive nonprofit and community organizations by freeing up staff and volunteer time to focus on their mission. We hope to increase the capacity, sustainability, and impact of the nonprofit sector by supporting collaborations, sharing resources, and helping to reduce organizational costs through pooling administrative activities — specifically for small-to-midsize nonprofits and coalitions working toward social change.


Our vision is to support an equitable, enduring, and nurturing community empowered and embraced by strong, sustainable nonprofit and community organizations. We envision a world where

  1. Nonprofits spend less time on infrastructure, operational, and logistical activities, allowing them to use their resources to focus on their mission

  2. Nonprofits maximize resources toward staff development and fulfilling their mission, increasing the impact of mission-related work

  3. Nonprofits support long-term employee growth, increasing sustainability within the sector

  4. Nonprofits build shared frameworks and work together toward social change

Values and Commitments

  1. We believe learning and innovation lead to personal, organizational, and societal growth. Therefore, we are committed to fostering learning environments and environments in which innovation can flourish

  2. We believe collaboration at the intersections is critical to achieving large-scale social change. Therefore, we are committed to focusing our efforts on our commonalities and recognizing and managing differences

  3. We believe the most sustainable solutions to complex community issues are solutions that engage and empower those most affected by the issues. Therefore, we are committed to identifying, engaging, and serving self-selecting member organizations that are highly impacted and highly invested

  4. We believe in a progressive social change model that integrates a power-privilege analysis, and that translates between the academic, activist, and entrepreneur. Therefore, we are committed to employing tools and methods of facilitation that help us build and share knowledge


Mala Nagarajan has been involved in social change work for almost 20 years — as a volunteer, employee, or manager — in the nonprofit, government, and business sectors. She co-founded Trikone-NW, an organization serving South Asian the LGBTQ community in the Pacific Northwest, and she has served on a number of community boards, including Equal Rights Washington, the City of Seattle Women’s Commission, and Seattle PFLAG. In Creative Collaborations, she draws from her work and advocacy experiences in consumer protection issues, in communications technology and access for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing communities, and in issues affecting marginalized communities - as well as her MBA studies at the University of Washington-Seattle and business systems analyst and application development experience.

"Creative Collaborations is like a dream for me. I'm an organizational development and process nut, so it's really exciting to be using cross-sector strategies, tools, and principles in this way."

In addition to starting Creative Collaborations, she currently serves as one of three co-directors of the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance, a federation of grassroots LGBTQ API organizations, and as a 2008-2009 Task Force LGBT Policy Fellow, investigating movement building issues in queer people of color organizations.

Vega Subramaniam joined the staff of Creative Collaborations in March 2009. Since 1992, Vega has taught sociology and worked in student services at Penn State University, Western Washington University, and the University of Washington. Among her specializations are race, class, and gender stratification, research methods, and social statistics. From 2003-2005, she served as Executive Director of Chaya, a Seattle-based nonprofit dedicated to ending violence against women in South Asian communities, and most recently, she served as a Program Officer at College Spark Washington, a foundation that support programs in Washington state that help low-income students with college readiness and retention. Vega has also volunteered with and served on the boards of numerous foundations and nonprofit organizations, most recently Pride Foundation and Trikone-NW. Vega received her undergraduate and graduate degrees in sociology from Penn State University.

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