Shankar Narayan is an advocate, attorney, and changemaker for fair, accountable, and community-centric technology. An independent consultant for tech equity, Shankar seeks to bring values of fairness, transparency, and accountability to surveillance and artificial intelligence technologies, and to center and empower the leadership of impacted communities, including people of color, immigrants, religious and gender minorities, and others.
Shankar was previously Technology and Liberty Project Director at the ACLU of Washington. In that capacity, he founded the groundbreaking Tech Equity Coalition, which helped pass landmark technology laws and campaigned for vendors to build tech in ethical and community-centric ways. For this work, Shankar received the 2018 Roberto Maestas Legacy Award from El Centro de la Raza.
For the previous 8 years, Shankar was Legislative Director at the ACLU-WA, where he helped pass legislation to achieve marriage equality, restore voting rights, enforce non-discrimination laws, improve police accountability, defeat gang legislation, and protect privacy, among others.
Shankar was previously Policy Director at OneAmerica, and a technology lawyer at K&L Gates. Shankar has served in leadership roles on Seattle's Immigrant and Refugee Advisory Board, Detention Watch Network, the South Asian Bar Association of Washington, the Asian Bar Association of Washington, and the Ethnic Diversity in the Legal Profession Committee. He is a graduate of Bates College, Yale Law School, and Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. Shankar was named King County Bar Association’s Outstanding Young Lawyer in 2010.
An immigrant, Shankar grew up in the Soviet Union, U.S., Maldives, India, Yugoslavia, Thailand, and Russia before coming to the USA. He enjoys the outdoors, motorcycling, and Anatolian shepherds. A poet, he is a five-time Pushcart Prize nominee and a recipient of awards and fellowships from Kundiman, Hugo House, Flyway, Paper Nautilus, River Heron, Jack Straw, and 4Culture, among others.
Shankar has taught law, technology, and ethics at Seattle University School of Law, as well as creative writing at Hugo House.