Four Indians among the
‘25 Most Influential Asian Americans in Georgia’
By Ravi R. Ponangi
Photo by Ben Hioe/Georgia Asian Times
Atlanta, GA: Joining hands with the monthly celebration of the
Asian American Heritage, Georgia Asian Times and The Home Depot
co-sponsored an award presentation to recognize the "25 Most
Influential Asian Americans in Georgia" on May 6 at the Home
Depot Store Support Center.
|Bob Danville, Chief of Global
Sourcing for The Home Depot presenting the award to Shiv
Dr. P.V. Rao
Shiv Aggarwal of Global Mall, Narsi Narasimhan, Chairman of
Georgia Indo-American Chamber of Commerce, Dr. P.V. Rao,
professor of Emory University, and Vijay Vemulapalli of Vibha
Inc., were Indian awardees among "25 Most Influential Asian
Americans in Georgia."
Shiv Aggarwal is currently busy translating into reality his
vision of creating North America’s first Indian indoor mall
(Global Mall). He says Global Mall will have dual wings — "a
shopping mall and a community hub." Aggarwal chairs the Board of
Gwinnet’s village Community Improvement District, which raises
money to provide increased police protection and landscaping in
Narsi Narasimhan, who is the co-founder and the CEO of Paalam
Inc., needs hardly any introduction. He is well known in the
community and founder of IPN, an informal networking group
around metro Atlanta. He is the current chairman of Georgia Indo
American Chamber of Commerce.
Dr. P.V. Rao is an erudite professor of nuclear physics in Emory
University and held in esteem by the Atlanta’s Indian community.
Dr. Rao has rendered dedicated service spanning over four
decades to the cause of the Indian community in America. He has
exhibited extraordinary versatility in handling different skills
and tasks. Dr. Rao is presently the vice president of Faith
Alliance of Metro Atlanta - an organization actively building
bridges between various religious communities of metro Atlanta.
Vijay Vemulapalli is well known as a leader in the Indian
non-profit community in Atlanta. For the past 15 years, he has
been heading Vibha - a national voluntary organization with more
than 15 centers in US - creating awareness and raising funds for
the underprivileged children of India and the US. He is
currently the Secretary and a member of the board of Vibha.
The Home Depot hosted a luncheon reception in honor of Georgia’s
Asian American community leaders and businesses on the same day.
Chairman & CEO Frank Blake hosted an exclusive reception in
honor of the 25 award winners.
"The Home Depot is proud to be a part of the effort to honor
these individuals for their accomplishments and contributions to
the community," said Lynn Wong, team leader of Asian Affinity
Group at the Home Depot.
Over 200 community leaders from the diverse Asian Pacific
community participated in the luncheon and award presentation.
Consuls of Japan, Korea, and Taiwan were also present at the
Frank Bifulco, Chief Marketing Officer of the Home Depot,
delivered the keynote ad-dress at the awards presentation. In
his address, Bifulco stated that the Home Depot was working
towards meeting Asian consumers shopping needs and experience.
This year’s 25 nominees were selected by a committee comprising
of Asian journalists based in Georgia -. Ravi R. Ponangi of
Indian Tribune, Sunny Kim of Korea Times, Yom Razak of Georgia
Asian Times and Peter Yeh of World Journal - and the committee
started the selection process way back in December 2008.
"This year’s award winners represent over 20 different ethnic
Asian communities in Georgia and these individuals have provided
positive contribution to the community, while enhancing the
Asian image overall," said Li Wong, publisher of Georgia Asian
Times while introducing the 25 award winners.
Bob Danville, Chief of Global Sourcing for the Home Depot,
presented a crystal plaque to each of this year’s award winners.