. ALUMNI ICC STAFF
. PAST ICC BOARD OF DIRECTORS & TRUSTEES
Over sixty years ago, India’s Founding Fathers asked all Indians to respect the national symbols of India, to cherish its heritage
and preserve its composite culture
(Constitution Part IV-A). To honor the importance of those ideals, a small group of Indian Americans in the San Francisco Bay Area (all successful entrepreneurs) decided to create a broad-based, inclusive Community Center. It’s mission would be to preserve the culture, values and heritage of India for future generations based on the vision and ideals of the Founding Fathers of India.
The India Community Center was conceived as a place where every generation of the Indian Diaspora could find comfort in various facets of their culture, preserve and practice unique traditions and celebrate festivals and social milestones in a welcoming environment. It was also designed to be a center where people of other cultures can explore and experience Indian traditions and values.
In addition to cherishing heritage, the ICC founders also decided that promoting brotherhood and fraternity in the spirit of the constitution would be even more important in a distant land. So uniting the diverse community also becomes one of ICC’s goals. And finally, incorporating community service as an essential pillar of this center was considered vital to living up to traditional Indian values. Thus came into being our mission of UNITE. SERVE. CELEBRATE
To promote Indian culture and values by providing social, cultural, recreational and community programs, thereby uniting the Indian community, and raising awareness about Indian culture in the local community. ICC welcomes all without regard to racial, ethnic, regional, religious, political or socio-economic background and its mission seeks:
- To make a positive difference in the community by providing social, cultural, educational, professional and recreational programs
- To foster community spirit by creating a place for family and friends to come together
- To be an essential resource for the community by providing free or heavily subsidized services in critical areas such as health, legal aid and senior support
- To promote awareness and understanding of the Indian-American subculture in the mainstream as well as provide a bridge to India
ICC is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit, non-religious, non-political organization.
India Community Center (ICC) opened its first facility in February 2003 with the efforts of the Godhwani brothers, Anil and Gautam, first generation Indian Americans and successful entrepreneurs, who created ICC as a non-profit organization dedicated to serving the Indian American and Greater Bay Area community. ICC is a non-religious and non-political organization with a goal to unite, serve and celebrate Indian culture in the community.
Talat Hasan served as the first Chairperson of the Board of Trustees, Anil Godhwani served as the first President of the Board of Directors and Naren Bakshi, who created the first ICC in the U.S. in Cleveland in the 1960s, was the first Adviser and guided the founders on the early direction. They were joined by several successful, passionate community members including Kanwal Rekhi, Sheena Vaidyanathan, Bala Joshi and Kailash Joshi who worked full time for several years to establish ICC.
ICC is financially supported through membership fees and community donations. It has also received corporate, foundation and government funding. Today it is the largest Indian American community center in North America. Its 38,000 sq. ft. facility in Milpitas, California, and an 10,000 sq. ft. Table Tennis Center serve the entire Bay Area with a professional staff and hundreds of volunteers providing a wide range of programs and services. ICC conducts several hundred programs annually to serve the community.
The degree and manner in which people of Indian origin will link with their country of origin will depend on their retaining their Indian identity and heritage. The Center, by creating a sense of community and its various programs, plays that role. However, most importantly it does so by strengthening a broad and inclusive Indian identity rather than the narrower ones that most other religious or regional centers do. Some examples of ICC’s programs are:
ICC has a significant focus on Community service such as free Legal, Medical, and Career clinics, and extensive Senior programs. ICC has also launched a program for Teens to organize and run community service projects.
At the same time ICC also offers a large number of programs for the community, including Bollywood Dance, Yoga, Fitness, Table Tennis, Language classes, GMAT, Karaoke, Music, Parent & Me, Kids’ Summer Camps, Carrom, and much, much more.
The ICC facility in Milpitas has multiple places for people to relax and meet others, enjoy a meal in the Café, browse through Indian papers and magazines, play billiards, cards, chess or carrom and enjoy the feeling of shared community. It also offers a modern, full-scale Fitness Center featuring over 60 Cardio and Weight machines, Personal Trainers and 35+ fitness classes each week, including Tai-Chi, Bollywood Aerobics, Yoga, Spinning, and more. In addition, our facilities include a state-of-the-art Banquet Center and Auditorium which includes the latest multimedia equipment. The Malavalli auditorium has become the preferred venue for community concerts, fundraisers, weddings, corporate meetings and conferences. It is also the place visiting Indian dignitaries and leaders come to meet the Indian community in the Bay Area. The center is open 7 days a week.
Since its founding in 2003, ICC has grown significantly in just about every area: space, programs, budget, donations, usage etc. Here are some examples of our growth:
· Space from 10K sq.ft. to 48K sq.ft. plus Cupertino Senior Center
· Annual Budget from $500K to $3.0M in 2010
· Camps: From less than 50 kids to 1400 kids in 2010
· Seniors: From 2 days a week, to 5 days in Milpitas and 3 days in Cupertino
· Auditorium events: From 30 in 2007 to over 100 in 2010
· Weekly Newsletter Readership: From less than 500 to over 15,000 in 2010
· Staff: From 10 to 20 in 2010
· Volunteers: From 20 to over 100 in 2010 are available on request.
From the very beginning ICC has operated with complete transparency and adopted governance standards that are in accordance with established procedures and laws for non-profit organizations.
The Trustee Directors are the governing body of the ICC. Trustees volunteer their time & no salary is received. They serve as guardians of the ICC’s mission & have ultimate veto power over the affairs of the organization. The Board of Trustees is made up of individuals who are major donors to the organization and/or esteemed community leaders who embody the mission of the ICC. Trustees meet three times per year & are elected for 3 or 10 year terms.
Trustees: Talat Hasan, Anil Godhwani, Gautam Godhwani, Kanwal Rekhi, B.V. Jagdeesh, Vibhu Mittal, Naren Bakshi
The Board of Directors help the organization achieve its vision and mission by employing the Executive Director and guiding the operations of the organization. Directors volunteer their time & no salary is received. Each Director makes a financial pledge & commitment to participate actively in the ICC’s work, sharing professional and personal expertise & wisdom. Directors meet four to six times per year & are elected for three year terms.
Current Board Presidents: Anil Godhwani & Nicki Mehra
Chief Executive Officer: Raj Desai
Past Board Presidents: Raju Reddy, Kailash Joshi, Naren Bakshi, Bala Joshi
Past Trustee: Sheena Vaidyanathan, Noosheen Hashemi, Kumar Malavalli
Anil was the co-founder and Vice President of Marketing for AtWeb, which was acquired by Netscape in 1998. He also co-founded and served as the VP of People at SimplyHired. Anil has a B.A. in Economics from the UC Santa Barbara. He is an angel investor and mentor to several Silicon Valley startups.
Gautam was the co-founder and CEO of AtWeb, which was acquired by Netscape in 1998. Gautam served as a director at Netscape and AOL for two years after the acquisition and then co-founded ICC. He co-founded and is currently the CEO of SimplyHired and has a B.E. from UC Berkeley.
Vibhu Mittal is the founder of Root-1, Inc, an educational software company focused on practice based learning. Prior to founding Root-1, he held positions at Google, Xerox PARC, Stanford/CSLI, CMU/LTI, University of Pittsburgh/LRDC and TIFR, Bombay. He holds a Ph.D from the University of Southern California.
Talat has been a technologist and entrepreneur for over two decades. She is married to Kamil Hasan and they have two daughters. She founded Sensys Instruments in 1996 to market products for the semiconductor manufacturing industry. The company was acquired by ThermaWave in 2002. Talat holds a B.A./M.A. in Physics from Oxford University and a B. Sc. in Physics from Aligarh Muslim University (India). She currently serves on several start-up company boards and IBPW (Indian Business and Professional Women). She is a charter member of TiE (The Indus Entrepreneurs), a trustee of AIF (American India Foundation) and on the advisory board of Maitri, a support group for victims of domestic violence. She is also a Senior Fellow of the American Leadership Forum. She is also active - with her husband - in investing in start-up companies through Hitek Venture Partners.
Kanwal was the founder of Excelan, which was sold to Novell in 1989. He is currently a venture capitalist and an angel investor and sits on the boards of numerous companies. Kanwal recently gifted $2 million to IIT, Bombay to help set up a new IT school. He was named "Entrepreneur of the Year" in 1987 by Arthur Young/Venture Magazine.
Naren Bakshi is a Jain Indian-American serial entrepreneur. In 1992, Bakshi founded Versata, which later went public in 2000. He is also the Founder of Xpede, CEOJumpStart, Harbinger Real Estate, and the International Venture Group. He is an angel investor and mentor to several start-ups and is a Charter Member of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) and has served as a Trustee of TiE Global. He was the founding Chairman of the first Indian Community Center in North America in Cleveland, Ohio. He obtained his BSc in Mechanical Engineering from Birla Institute of Technology in Ranchi, India. He holds an M.S. in Industrial Engineering (1968) and an M.B.A. in Finance and Marketing (1969) from the University of California, Berkeley.
Dr Nipa Sheth was the co-founder and artistic director of the popular dance group called Zingaris. She presided over the non-profit group for 10 years and growing it from a 6 person dance-for-fun group to a 150+ team of choreographers, dancers, production crew who raised more than $100,000 for various charities in the Bay Area. She is a dentist by profession. She has been practicing for 19 years and is well reputed in the dental field. She currently practices in Sunnyvale and Saratoga areas. She has recently relocated back to the Bay Area from Mumbai with her husband (Beerud Sheth, founder of Elance and Gupshup) and two children. She is passionate about dance, education, health-tech and community involvement.
Kirti Kalra is an attorney at The Chugh Firm's Northern California office. Mr. Kalra joined the firm in 2008. Mr. Kalra works with both the Immigration and the Litigation Practice Groups. Mr. Kalra has extensive experience in immigrant and non immigrant visa petitions. Mr. Kalra received his J.D. from the Thomas Jefferson School of Law in California. He received his B.A., in English from the University of California at Irvine. Mr. Kalra enjoys traveling, sports, watching movies and listening to music.
Shaista Ali is founder and CEO of "We are one," A non-profit organization which provides support for interfaith initiatives in India.
We are one promotes communal harmony across the world at a grassroots level, empowering individuals and communities through a variety of financial and social initiatives, building peace and harmony as one human race.
she also served as a trustee on the board of ING an interfaith organization and currently is working as a co-producer at Venus films.
Irfan Khan is the President & CEO of Bristlecone. He is a senior executive with 20+ years of experience heading the profitable growth, competitiveness, and market leadership of emerging and mature businesses on a global scale, with an emphasis in B2B solution delivery. As the President and Chief Executive Officer of supply chain management solution provider Bristlecone, Irfan provides end-to-end strategy, oversight, and direction for a 1,400-person company, with a focus on revolutionizing supply chain and analytics as a leader and change agent in the market. Equally focused on creating customer value and driving bottom-line results, Irfan has combined a unique background in business leadership, strategic planning, field execution, people leadership, and customer-facing operations to repeatedly transform, grow, and optimize organizations—whether driving turnaround, building new lines of business, or creating foothold in new markets. Prior to Bristlecone, Irfan served as a General Manager from 2001 to 2003 for Sutherland Global Services, a global provider of business process and technology management services. Holding full P&L responsibility, Irfan established the company's West Coast region as the fastest growing region with 55% Y0Y growth. As Regional Director for Microsoft's Small & Medium Enterprise business in the Asia Pacific region from 2000 to 2002, he built the business from scratch, igniting a 50% YoY growth that positioned the region as an emerging strategic market for the company. Earlier roles include Director of Asia Pacific Operations for Hughes Network Systems and Account Manager for CMC LTD's Federal Business in Asia. Irfan holds a Master's Degree in Business Administration with a specialization in International Business and a Mechanical Engineering Degree. He also attended the Harvard Business School Advanced Management Program. Irfan serves on the Advisory Board of several enterprise software and service organizations.
Devendra (Dev) Shukla is the founder, President and CEO of Innovative Technical Solutions, Inc. (ITSI), a Global Environmental and Civil Infrastructure business headquartered in Walnut Creek, CA, with a staff of approximately 400 and revenues of over $250M per year. ITSI was recently acquired by Gilbane, one of the nation’s leading multi-billion dollar CM firms. Prior to forming ITSI, he had founded the Northern division of Environment Solutions, Inc. which was acquired by a public firm TRC. IIT Kanpur recognized his contributions and accomplishments by bestowing him with the Distinguished Alumnus Award (DAA) in 2009. He graduated from IIT Kanpur with a B. Tech degree in Civil Engineering. He subsequently obtained Masters and Ph. D. degrees in engineering mechanics and systems/probabilistic applications to Civil Engineering. He has worked on a broad range of technical challenges including: risk based permitting/design, nuclear power plants, coal/uranium mining, nuclear waste disposal, rock mechanics, radiological migration, off shore oil spills, hazardous site closures, waste management, shore erosion, tunnel designs, etc. His interests have included Indian and western music, bridge, tennis, and occasional social dancing. He is keenly interested in supporting educational programs and mentoring the development of future businesses. He has been married to Kshama for 36 years. They have three children – Tanuja (MBA), Sameer (JD) and Anjuli (JD).
Mihir is a Managing Director in the Santa Clara office and the Group Head of the US Technology practice. As a leader in Corporate Finance, Mihir serves and expands relationships with clients in the Technology sector with a focus on M&A advisory services and private capital raises. Mihir has over 15 years of experience in executing mergers and acquisitions, private placements, divestitures, recapitalizations, IPOs, follow-on offerings, and delivering fairness opinions. Prior to joining KPMG CF, Mihir served as Managing Director of investment banking at Morgan Keegan Technology Group. In this role, he provided support for technology, financial, and M&A transactions for venture capitalists, private equity firms, and high-tech companies in the Silicon Valley market. Prior to joining Morgan Keegan Technology Group, Mihir was a Managing Director and Head of Software Investment Banking at ThinkEquity. Prior to joining ThinkEquity Partners, he was a Senior Vice President in the Technology Investment Banking group at Raymond James. Mihir holds a M.B.A. degree from the University of Chicago, a M.S. in chemical engineering from the University of Houston, and a B.S. degree in chemical engineering from the University of Florida. He also holds General Securities Representative (Series 7), General Securities Principal (Series 24), and Securities Agent (Series 63).
Tanuja Bahal is currently consulting with various non profit organizations in the Bay Area. Till recently she was the Executive Director of the India Community Center. A results oriented and innovative professional she has over 20 years of experience in non-profit strategy, program management, marketing strategy, marketing communications, international marketing and event management in corporate and non profit environments. In 2013 she was awarded the ‘Milpitas Hero Award’ by Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski. She is passionate about community building, place-making and believes that the arts enrich our lives in multifaceted ways.
Mrs. Gopi Godhwani is the Chair for the Senior Program at ICC and simply put, she is the soul and inspiration of this program. The entire Senior community at ICC adore and love her. The Senior program has grown by leaps and bounds under the leadership of Mrs Godhwani.
Mr. Thangaraj has been a Managing Director of Essex Woodlands Health Ventures, a venture capital firm specializing in the healthcare industry, since 1997. Prior to joining Essex Woodlands Health Ventures, he helped establish a telecommunication services company, for which he served as its CEO. Mr. Thangaraj is a veteran in operations and venture capitol. His career was sparked by ARCH Venture Partners (“AVP”), a leading venture capital firm with over $2 billion Mr. Thangaraj holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Chicago.Mr. Thangaraj also serves as the Chairman of the Board of Directors for MAP International, is an Advisory Board member for the University of Chicago’s Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship, is an Advisory Board member of the Global Cardiovascular Innovation Center (GCIC) at the Cleveland Clinic and is an Advisory Board member for the Institute on Care at the End of Life at Duke University Divinity School.
Mr. Mehra serves as managing director of Headstrong. He is responsible for North America Operations including, East, West, South and Central regions.
He was a co-founder of TechSpan, which merged with Headstrong in October 2003. Prior to that, he was the Executive Vice President for a consulting company that he helped grow from $18 million to $52 million in annual revenues during his tenure.
Mr. Mehra has over 25 years of IT industry experience. He also spent 15 years with the HCL Group, where he helped start and grow HCL-Deluxe Inc., a joint venture with Deluxe Corporation focusing on the financial services market. Nicki is a Harvard Business School AMP graduate and holds a business degree from University of Delhi
A serial entrepreneur with a track record of success, Purna has over 30 years of experience in the technology and financial services industries. During his career as an entrepreneur, he has launched 3 startups in Silicon Valley and in Boston, successfully raised angel and venture capital and built these businesses to a revenue/profitability level that resulted in acquisitions by public companies. Currently, Purna is in the middle of another startup FiPort, Inc., that intends to offer a revolutionary cloud based internet service to help families organize and manage their financial lives.