As vice president & director of YAF’s Center for Entrepreneurship & Free Enterprise, Raj Kannappan leads the organization’s efforts to educate and inspire students to advance free market ideas among their peers. His focus is growing the share of young people who adopt the free enterprise philosophy—through free market student conferences and seminars, campus lectures, and digital and print educational content.
Raj has previously served as the Foundation’s Director of YAF Chapter Services, advising and training student activists nationwide to promote the ideas of individual freedom, free enterprise, traditional values, and a strong national defense.
He currently serves on the Young Americans for Freedom Board of Governors.
Previous to joining the Foundation team, Raj held roles in management consulting and industrial distribution. At CRA, Inc., a leadership and communications consultancy, Raj advised corporate leaders and teams to communicate strategy and large-scale changes, such as mergers and acquisitions, technology implementations, and restructuring; drive organizational alignment; and build their most critical relationships. At McMaster-Carr, one of the largest privately-held industrial supply firms in America, Raj led internal projects to improve customer service and retention, inventory management, and warehouse operations.
Raj earned a Bachelor of Arts from Cornell University, where he studied government, economics, and Southeast Asian affairs. He served as the chairman of the campus conservative organization and wrote for the Cornell Review, the conservative and libertarian student publication. During his time on campus, he was involved with various Foundation programs, including organizing the 9/11: Never Forget Project, hosting campus lectures by Foundation speakers such as Karl Rove and Marc Thiessen, and participating in the West Coast Leadership Conference at the Reagan Ranch.