Our TEAM | The Indian SCENE

Our TEAM

DJ TIGER is a highly ranked Indian DJ based in Michigan. DJ TIGER also hosts TigerRadio on 88.1Fm which is the first fusion radio show in Detroit and the only Indian FM radio show in the midwest. For more on DJTIGER, please visit www.djtiger.com.
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Maitreyi Anantharaman is the magazine’s editor.
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Poornima Samandur is a Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator with over 20+ years of work experience in evidence-based medical nutrition therapy. Poornima owns and operates an independent nutrition counseling services. Visit her blog on SparrNutrition.com.
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Jothi Moorthy (JoJo) is a self-proclaimed foodie and health enthusiast. She has a passion for cooking and a huge desire to show that living a healthy lifestyle can actually be easy and fun! Her culinary adventures include using recipes from around the world and transforming them into healthy and elegant meals for the everyday home cook. For more Recipes and Articles on Health & Wellness, please visit her blog at jojoshealthyliving.com.
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“Health is not about the absence of illness but about our working conditions, education, housing, social inclusion and public policy.” — Asha Shajahan, MD Asha Shajahan is a board certified family physician. She is an assistant professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at Oakland University School of Medicine. She is the medical director of community health for hospital in Michigan. Dr. Shajahan is also the host of an award winning health podcast. She is the founder of Dance Medicine, MD a volunteer organization of health professionals that teach Indian dancing to serve predominantly underserved populations who cannot afford to pay for exercise, have limited access to cultural dance forms, and those striving for social connection. Dr. Shajahan is a 2017 Crain’s Detroit 40 under 40 winner for her work in disparities. She has a passion for improving health opportunities for underserved neighborhoods through multi-disciplinary partnerships and an emphasis on prevention. She was also named the Diversity Champion for Beaumont Health in 2018 by the Race Relations and Diversity Taskforce of Michigan for her work in Diversity and Inclusion. She was recently named the Joyce Ivy Foundation Woman of Impact 2019.
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Kitty Prasad authored a recipe book, “Kitty’s Kitchen, A Way to a Healthy, Happy & Peaceful Life”. As much as she loves to cook, she always advises that people eat smaller meals more often and eat a balanced, healthy, amount of food. Kitty enjoys organic food and prepares meals for her family with the best ingredients to keep everyone healthy.
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Rajeshri Gandhi Bhatia is a career educator, who earned her bachelors degree at Michigan and her masters degree at Harvard. For the last 20 years, she has experienced teaching students at all grade levels, been a school principal, started schools and working with parents to find the right school or college for their child. In addition, she serves as the Director for Detroit Operations for Grand Valley State University. We invite you to follow her facebook group-Strategic School Info Sharing for Motivated Parents (https://www.facebook.com/groups/422553128206421/about/) for more tips and information!
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Sharan Nayak is a graduate of The University of Pittsburgh. She has a teaching degree in both English and Speech/Communications. Sharan has been teaching at Seaholm High School in Birmingham since 2000.
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From Wall Street to wine cellars, Rupal Shankar is living her best wine life in New York City. When she is not writing, Rupal is globetrotting the world exploring food and wine. Rupal is a professional wine writer who enjoys sharing her experiences of wine, food and travel. She loves learning about wine through her travels, but also has many formal certifications. Visit her websitesyrahqueen.com for informative insights into the world of wine and follow along her daily wine journey on her hugely popular Instagram handle @Syrah_Queen .
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Dr. Aparajita Jeedigunta is a social-personality psychology, an empowerment and success coach, a consultant, an international speaker, and, the author of “Transform Your Self: Everything You Need to Know to Find the Right Coach for You”. You can find more information about her at www.ajrao.com
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Harsha Nahata is a graduate student at the Craig Newmark School of Journalism at CUNY. Born and raised in the Indian community of metro Detroit, Harsha is drawn to writing about the experiences of second generation Americans, and what it means to grow up in between cultures. Harsha has a B.A. in Public Policy from the University of Michigan and her work has appeared in Catalyst Midland, SEEN Magazine, Brown Girl Magazine, Bklyner, and the Huffington Post, among others.
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Natasha Vasan, a born and raised Bloomfield Hills native, is currently taking on her undergraduate degree at Northwestern University. Double majoring in Social Policy and Global Health, Natasha is fascinated by the ways in which a person’s body, mind, and the environment in which they exist are connected and impact each other. Having attended Cranbrook Schools all her life, it was there that Natasha discovered her passions for both issues of social justice as well as writing. In her free time, Natasha is a self-proclaimed voracious reader and truly enjoys expressing herself through the written word.
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Latika Mangrulkar is an educator, writer, and storyteller. She volunteers her time at many community organizations such as MAI Family Services. She also volunteers at the Detroit Institute of Arts where she is an IPV; her tours focus on the “Evolution of the Immigrant Identity.”
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Sunita Dass has joined our team as a fashion contributor. She is an attorney who lives in Ann Arbor with her husband, two boys and her dog Chutney. Sunita stays in touch with her creative side through her blog, where she covers affordable fashion, reviews beauty products and shares recipes. In her free time, she enjoys baking her favorite desserts and traveling. For more, visit her blog at sunitadass.com.
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“MirayaFit’s inception is out of sheer passion for dance! Mukta got into dance and fitness as a profession after quitting her corporate career in 2016. A certified NASM personal trainer, group fitness instructor, and a graduate in Indian classical dance, Mukta radiates her passion for overall wellness through various exercise routines that she teaches! Functional fitness is what she specializes in. Keep it simple. Keep it happy!”
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Pallavi Jassi Abbott is a state-licensed mortgage loan originator in Michigan and a former journalist withThe Indian Express. She loves to learn about the different experiences of the people she meets and is driven by her strong desire to help those around. She believes in spiritual healing and is certified in Reiki.
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Meena Puri is the founder of Ayurvedic Healing Center LLC and brings over 35 years of combines Yoga and Ayurveda experience to her practice. She comes from a lineage of Ayurvedic Doctors and her dedication to helping others is inspired by her father, Dr. C. R. Puri and her conviction that you CAN heal is fueled by her own life’s experiences. Meena is an ambassador and practitioner member of AAPNA, and an author of #1 Best Seller “Healing Your Relationship with Food: The Ayurveda Answer. In her spare time, she enjoys dancing, singing, anything outdoors and being a mom. For more, visit www.ayurvedichealingcenter.com
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Narayanaswamy Sankagiri holds a PhD in Mechanical Engineering. He is currently employed as a manager at an auto parts supplier company in Auburn Hills. Narayanaswamy is a man of many interests – an accomplished Bharatanatyam dancer, a connoisseur of music, a community theater artist, a spiritual seeker and a social activist. Deeply interested in the social dynamics and the immigrant experience in America, he published many short stories in English and Telugu on the subject and has a book of short stories to his credit. He served as the chief editor of the monthly bilingual (English/Telugu) magazine for Telugu Association of North America (TANA), one of the largest ethnic Indian social organizations in the US. Narayanaswamy serves as the chair of Outreach and Publication Committees of The Bharatiya Temple in Troy, MI representing the Hindu perspective at interfaith panels all over Detroit Metro area.
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Deepika Ahuja has her bachelors and masters degree in English Literature from Delhi University as well as a masters in Education from University of Michigan. She had a long career as a fourth grade teacher at Cranbrook Schools as well as teaching ESL at Schoolcraft College. She loves to read, watch movies, and most of all spend time with her family.
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Sonia Mishra Patel handled public relations at Ford Motor Company for more than 12 years before deciding to stay at home with her children and start freelance writing. Sonia is a Michigan State University graduate with a master’s degree in Communications and serves on her local Democratic Club’s Executive Board.
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Dr. Urva Naik is a board-certified OB-GYN at Ascension Providence Hospital. She focuses on comprehensive women’s care from adolescence to pregnancy to menopause. Dr. Naik has always enjoyed teaching and truly believes that education is empowerment. She intends on using this philosophy to help discuss important topics related to women’s health for the community.
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Varsha is passionate about food and flavors; loves cooking which she learned from her grandmother, mother, mother-in-law, family, friends, TV shows and cook books. Her family motivates her to cook traditional, continental and fusion dishes. Varsha is a Software Professional working at Ford Motor Company, and is a professionally trained and certified dance and yoga instructor. She lives in Michigan with her husband Vivek and daughters Vaidehi & Vrushali.
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Monik Sanghvi advises growth-focused executives, entrepreneurs and emerging leaders around the country — helping them to envision a future yet to be seen, inspiring them to take ownership, and partnering with them to make it happen. He earned his BS at Michigan and MBA at Harvard. He now lives in Orchard Lake, MI with his wife and two teenage children. He welcomes you to connect at https://www.facebook.com/moniksanghviCPC
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Aparna Sridaran is a native of Rochester Hills, Michigan. She recently graduate from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, with a dual degree in Organizational Behavior and Literature & Creative Writing. Aparna is passionate about issues surrounding immigration and South Asian identity; her senior thesis was a collection of essays on these subjects set against the backdrop of today’s political climate. This passion is what drew her to The Indian Scene, and she is excited to bring her lens to the website.
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Sid Mittra is Emeritus Professor of Finance at Oakland University. He is passionate about writing and continues to make a difference in the lives of people who seek his advice. Mittra has two children, four grandchildren and two great grandchildren. A long-term resident of Michigan, currently he lives in Minnesota.
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Jyotika Sheth is a retired Obstetrician and Gynecologist. She emigrated to USA from India in 1969 to be with her husband and raised two daughters while pursuing her profession in private practice. Since retirement, she spends her free time staying active in senior community here in Michigan as well as in California when she visits her daughter. She has interest in classical Indian music, line dancing, playing cards etc. She enjoys being with people. Above all, she describes herself as a ‘student for life’ meaning she likes to explore and learn new hobbies.
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Mayur Patel is a graduate from Tufts University School of Medicine and The Heller School of Social Policy and Management in Boston, MA. He started anesthesiology residency training before realizing that this was not going to fulfil him professionally. After withdrawing he has been pursuing his passion to be an entertainer in the media. He grew up in Canton, MI and went to the University of Michigan with a major in Neuroscience and minor in Medical Anthropology. Currently most of his friends know him by his nickname: Flash Patel.
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