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America India Foundation Raises 1.1 Million

Ranjani Saigal

The 17th Annual Gala of AIF‘s New England chapter raised more than $1.1 million for its charitable causes in India and honored Vertex Pharmaceuticals CEO Reshma Kewalramani and CRISPR Therapeutics CEO Samarth Kulkarni. 

The gala was held on Saturday, April 29th at the Renaissance Boston Waterfront Hotel in Boston. Following the Meet-n-Greet, AIF presented videos of their work during dinner. Several videos detailing special projects funded by Vivek and Vandana Sharma, who have pledged a million dollars over 7 years to empower women in different parts of India and projects visited by local area donor Sundar Subramaniam and others, were very touching. The MCEE for the evening Gita Vishwanathan welcomed the audience and introduced the beautiful dance by the Anubhava Dance group led by Dr. Shriya Srinivasan.

Gala Chairs Sumeit and Sanjay Aggarwal said that they were delighted to see the New England community come together at the AIF gala where AIF honored Ms. Kewalramani and Mr. Kulkarni, two leaders in the Boston life sciences industry.
“Keeping with our gala theme of Imagining New Futures, we featured Green Jobs and several other futuristic programs that AIF is delivering in India for a meaningful impact on people’s lives,” said Aggarwals. “With the support of our benefactors, we raised a record amount of funds, which is a testament to the generosity of our community and the talent and dedication of AIF’s team.”

New England Advisory Board Chairs Nithya Iyer Singh and Navjot Singh extended a heartfelt thanks to all those who could attend the New England Chapter AIF Gala.

“The caring of the group and the spirit of giving back was infectious,” Singhs said. “We are grateful to all the volunteers and the Gala Chairs Sumeit and Sanjay Aggarwal for an amazing event.  Another source of inspiration was the transformative work being performed by our honorees Dr. Reshma Kewalramani and Dr. Sam Kulkarni and we cannot thank them enough for their leadership in changing the world around us.”
Both Ms. Kewalramani and Mr. Kulkarni appreciated AIF’s role and impact in creating social-economic change in India and said that they were “inspired” by AIF’s impact. The coming together of these industry stalwarts and being honored on the same night is even more special given the partnership of the two firms entering into.

AIF CEO Nishant Pandey gave an overview of the organization’s commitment and priorities for the coming years and remarked on Boston’s landscape of innovation by saying, “creativity, boldness and innovation describes the Boston community and it was apt that the theme of the gala was chosen as “Imagining New Futures.”

A mesmerizing contemporary Bharatanatyam performance by Anubhava Dance Company held the audience captive. The camaraderie of the community and their passion towards AIF’s mission was palpable in the room. A memorable evening, summarized aptly by Ms. Kewalramani who called it, “the best party in town”.

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