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First Indian-American Appointed To CT Gubernatorial Commission

Press Release

The Connecticut Department of Public Health (DPH) is pleased to announce that Sarju S. Shah of Berlin has been named to serve on the Governor’s Commission on Community Service.

“Sarju is an active and outgoing person who leads by example,” commented DPH Commissioner J. Robert Galvin, M. D., M. P. H. “The commission will be well-served by her first-hand involvement in a variety of community service organizations and projects, both past and present.”

The Connecticut Commission on Community Service was established by gubernatorial order in 1993 to administer community service programs in the state, and to promote citizenship and volunteerism.  Within the areas of civic engagement, education, environment, human needs and public safety, the Commission commits to engage, expand and enhance community service experiences in Connecticut.

Since 2004, Ms. Shah has been employed at DPH as the Grant Development Coordinator in the Contracts and Grants Management Section. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in psychology with a minor in biology, as well as a Masters of Public Health, each from Boston University, and is a 1997 graduate of Berlin High School.

Throughout her college years, Ms. Shah was an active community service volunteer with such organizations as the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, the Asian Task Force: Domestic Violence Prevention Organization, Saheli (Friendship for South Asian Women) of Greater Boston, and Hindu Students Council. She also led efforts at Boston University to raise money to help the victims of the January 2001 Indian earthquake.

“Sarju is a true find for the commission. Sarju has a demonstrated a commitment to community activism and understands the power to positively impact serious social problems within communities.  She is self-motivated, an excellent mentor, and has a ubiquitous fire to “reach and
teach” all members of a community.  Undeniably, Ms. Shah is a leader and will enhance businesses and civic communities, anywhere.  We are thrilled to have her,” commented Jacqueline M. Johnson, Executive Director, Connecticut Commission on Community Service, Connecticut Department of Higher Education.

Ms. Shah remains active in her community currently as a teacher of Indian cultural heritage and religion for children and teens in association with the Connecticut Valley Hindu Temple Society, editor of the Hindu Students’ Council ‘Samskar’ Magazine and as a member of Sneha, a network of women of South Asian origin.

“It is an honor to be appointed to this commission.  This is a great opportunity for me to help foster change and improve the lives of our neighbors, friends and fellow residents through community service,” Ms. Shah stated.

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