A proven administrator, educator, and thought leader, Ruki Neuhold-Ravikumar most recently was Acting Director of the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Museum of Design where she managed more than 100 full-time employees and a collection of 215,000 design objects spanning 31 centuries. She has previously served as the Director of Education for Cooper Hewitt, Associate Provost of Education and Access, and the Acting Under Secretary for Education at the Smithsonian Institution.

During the pandemic, she led the Smithsonian’s response to the nation’s distance learning needs with a pan-institutional team. Prior to that, she worked extensively in higher education at the University of Central Oklahoma in Edmond, Oklahoma where she advanced from professor in graphic design to director of graduate programs and associate dean of the College of Arts & Design. Neuhold-Ravikumar is also an award-winning graphic designer. 

Originally from Chennai, India, she received her MFA in graphic design from Iowa State University and BFA in the history of fine art and drawing and painting from the Stella Maris College in India. She also has an executive education certificate in business from Yale University and a certificate in museum studies from Northwestern University. 

She served in multiple leadership roles at American Institute of Graphic Arts and was named an AIGA Fellow in 2015 by the Oklahoma Chapter. She has won numerous awards and recognitions including the prestigious 2021 Design Achievement Award from Iowa State College of Design. Neuhold-Ravikumar is married to Patti Neuhold-Ravikumar, a leadership and business strategy consultant.