About Speakers

From 2003-2009 Ms. Bansal served as a commissioner of the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, a bipartisan independent federal agency to which she was appointed by the Majority Leader of the United States Senate, and elected Chair in 2004-2005. She is the only Hindu who has served on the Commission.
She served as a member on President Obama's Inaugural Council on Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships and is the founder of Hindu American Seva Charities. Over the last three decades as a change catalyst pioneer and social entrepreneur she has worked to “make a difference” on many fronts.

Padma Kuppa leads efforts for inter-religious cooperation as a Board member of the Hindu American Foundation, an advocacy organization that promotes the Hindu ideal of pluralism, and writes for Patheos.com under the byline "Seeking Shanti."

Stephen has dedicated himself to spreading the deepest and most practical levels of spiritual knowledge about the soul--our real identity. It is his strongest realization that our existence on this earthly plane becomes much easier and more vibrant the more we expand our spiritual awareness to perceive the higher dimensions and purpose of things around us.
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Swami Pragyapad is a graduate from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. Ever since his graduation in 1996 he has participated and deliberated at conferences and seminars covering varied topics such as renewable energy, child and women welfare, social development and yoga and meditation. His lectures have drawn audiences of as many as 10000 people. His programs on yoga and meditation are being televised in India and abroad. He has also initiated and managed a number of social service projects, which include free schools for children, rural women empowerment programs, relief and rehabilitation programs for the Tsunami victims in India. These projects have transformed the social and economic fabric of the regions where these have been initiated.

SWAMI ATMAVIDYANANDA (Ramakrishna Mission)
Swami Atmavidyananda is a Swami of the Ramakrishna Order of India. He joined the order in 1978 and took final vows in 1990. Currently he is the treasurer of the Vedanta Society of Southern California. He attended Occidental College where he graduated Magna Cum Laude with a BA in Mathematics, and Stanford University where he earned his MA degree in Education. In addition to being the treasurer, general office manager, and occasional lecturer for the Vedanta Society of Southern California, he gives talks to school and church groups, conducts discussions groups on Vedanta, and has both lectured and organized seminars about the relationship of various subjects to Vedanta Philosophy. He currently coordinates the Ramakrishna Vedanta Center of Las Vegas, NV.

Dhiru (Dhirendra) Shah

Director - Treasurer- World Association for Vedic Studies (WAVES)
Educational background: 
MS University, Baroda, India; London School of Economics & Political Science, London UK; Harvard Business School, Boston, USA

Carrier High Lights:
·       Worked in India as senior corporate executive in marketing, finance and general management in three large corporations. Travelled overseas extensively for building export of engineering products.
·       Worked as General Manager for a Middle East company in Qatar specializing in trading, construction and oil field equipment
·       Launched an international trading company in Greenwich, CT specializing in export of Petro Chemicals, and basic raw materials for fertilizers

·       Currently,  involved in export of paper and import of engineering products
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