A bIT ABOUT ME
Although I was born in India, my parents brought me to the United States when I was just 4 years old. They were here to get their advanced degrees. I was raised and educated in the U.S. through 10th grade. Growing up, I was an American. That’s all I knew. So, when my parents decided to return to India when I was 15, it wasn’t the easiest move. However, I had many opportunities in India to grow and learn. I continued my education and graduated from my college as their very first female Mechanical Engineer. During college, I read Lee Iacocca’s biography (President and CEO of Chrysler during the 1980s) and it inspired me to return to my home, to America, with the dream of working at Chrysler and becoming part of Detroit’s auto industry.
I came back to the U.S. with two suitcases, $250, and the belief that nothing was going to stop me. In grad school, I worked hard alongside my classmates to show them that engineering wasn’t just for men. And then, 20 years ago, I moved to Michigan with my young family. The economic opportunity and supportive family resources in the area were perfect for a young couple with a toddler and a new baby. I was blessed to be able to stay home for a few years and raise our children. During that time, I came to appreciate how kind and caring people here are. I realized that building a tight-knit community like ours happens from the ground up, so I began looking for ways to get involved. And that’s when my love for the area started turning into action. I’ve served on several local boards and community groups, working to create understanding and bridge gaps across our District. And later in my professional career, my dreams came true; I proudly worked at Chrysler as a Project Manager.
I believe volunteering is the ultimate exercise in Democracy. You vote maybe once or twice a year, but volunteering is how you develop the kind of community you want to be surrounded by each and every day. And that’s what I’ve done for the last 20 years. I’ve taken several opportunities to contribute. My history of civic engagement includes:
· Currently serving on Troy’s Planning Commission, where I was the first to introduce a Tree Protection Ordinance. I also serve on Troy’s Zoning Board.
· Currently serving on Troy’s Historical Society, to help preserve our area’s history
· Currently serving on Michigan’s Roundtable for Diversity and Inclusion
· A PTA leader throughout my children’s K-12 education
· Founding member of the Troy-area Interfaith Group, bringing together people of all religions, nationalities, and backgrounds to do projects together and create understanding
· Volunteer with The Troy Community Coalition
I’m very proud of my ability to work in diverse business settings. I’ve had a successful career ranging across Automotive, Finance, and Marketing industries, including working as a Systems Manager at a university-based non-profit and as a Project Manager with Chrysler. My latest position: A Business Analyst in Auto Finance. I’ve also had the opportunity to contribute to MetroParent magazine and love to write, particularly on Interfaith topics.