28 episodes

Trailblazers dives deep into the journeys of trailblazing South Asians, sharing the stories of the leaders and dreamers lighting the way across the Diaspora and beyond.

South Asian Trailblazers Simi Shah | Trailblazers Media

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.7 • 57 Ratings

Trailblazers dives deep into the journeys of trailblazing South Asians, sharing the stories of the leaders and dreamers lighting the way across the Diaspora and beyond.

    Dhanusha Sivajee, Chief Marketing Officer @ Angi

    Dhanusha Sivajee, Chief Marketing Officer @ Angi

    Simi catches up with Dhanusha Sivajee, Chief Marketing Officer at Angi.

    In her role, Dhanusha is responsible for brand and marketing strategy. Angi, previously known as Angie’s List, is an online resource for finding vetted, local providers for various home services. Prior to Angi, Dhanusha served as Chief Marketing Officer of The Knot, a platform providing content and services to couples planning weddings and starting their lives together. She also previously served as Chief Marketing Officer at the AOL Brand Group prior to its acquisition by Verizon.

    Dhanusha got her start in the space at Bloomberg and at HBO after pursuing her MBA at Duke. And while at HBO, she was part of the efforts to launched HBO on-Demand and HBO Go. Currently, she also sits on the board of HNI, one of the world's largest office manufacturing companies. Dhanusha is originally from England where she grew up immersed in the world of small businesses run by her Sri Lankan immigrant parents. In this episode, Simi explores the impact of Dhanusha's South Asian and small business roots on her career trajectory.

    For more episodes, visit southasiantrailblazers.com. Subscribe to our newsletter to get new episodes in your inbox. Follow us @southasiantrailblazers on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

    • 44 min
    Brinda Adhikari, Showrunner and Executive Producer for The Problem with Jon Stewart

    Brinda Adhikari, Showrunner and Executive Producer for The Problem with Jon Stewart

    Simi welcomes Brinda Adhikari, Executive Producer and Showrunner of The Problem with Jon Stewart. This new AppleTV show marks the famed Jon Stewart’s return to television as he tackles a new societal issue in every episode. And Brinda — she's at the helm.
    Brinda joined The Problem  from CBS News, where she was a senior broadcast producer for segments anchored by major TV personalities like Norah O’Donnell and Scott Pelley. She began her career in broadcast television at ABC news, where she started as a researcher and rose the ranks to become a producer on World News Tonight with Diane Sawyer and David Muir. She spent over a decade at the organization. Brinda is unlike any other guest we’ve had on Trailblazers to date. In this episode, we delve into why she chose to pursue production, diversity in the industry, and her vision for her highly-anticipated new show.

    For more episodes, visit southasiantrailblazers.com. Subscribe to our newsletter to get new episodes in your inbox. Follow us @southasiantrailblazers on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

    • 42 min
    Reshma Saujani, Founder @ Girls Who Code

    Reshma Saujani, Founder @ Girls Who Code

    Simi sits down with Reshma Saujani — Founder of Girls Who Code. Reshma is also an international bestselling author, attorney, and activist. 

    The daughter of Indian refugees, Reshma studied political science and eventually went on to pursue her Masters in Public Policy and J.D.
    After graduating from Yale Law, Reshma worked as a corporate attorney on Wall Street. But soon, she pivoted to politics. She founded South Asians for Kerry, during John Kerry’s 2004 presidential election run. She also served on the Hillary Clinton’s National Finance Board during her 2008 campaign. In 2010, she herself became the first Indian-American woman to run for congress. Though her was bid was unsuccessful, her time on the campaign trail laid the groundwork for Girls Who Code. Reshma’s visits to K-12 schools made her increasingly aware of gender disparities in STEM classrooms. So in 2012, she founded the nonprofit in an effort to close the gender gap in tech. To date, they’ve served over 450,000 girls around the world. 
    Since retiring as CEO of the organization, Reshma has embarked on a new mission: the Marshall Plan for Moms — her vision to revitalize women in the workforce and to compensate them for their unpaid labor. Her book on the subject, Pay Up: The Future of Women and Work is due for release in March 2022. Listen in for key insights into Reshma’s successes in law, politics, and tech.

    For more episodes, visit southasiantrailblazers.com. Subscribe to our newsletter to get new episodes in your inbox. Follow us @southasiantrailblazers on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

    • 22 min
    Sruthi Lanka, CFO @ Public.com

    Sruthi Lanka, CFO @ Public.com

    Simi welcomes Sruthi Lanka, Chief Financial Officer at Public.com. Public is a platform that makes investing easy, accessible, and social. The Robinhood rival launched in September 2019, and has since acquired 1 million users, achieving a valuation of $1.2 billion.
    Before joining Public, Sruthi served as Head of Strategic Finance at MoneyLion, another emerging fintech startup. But Sruthi isn’t new to the financial trade. She previously spent time as an engineer at Goldman Sachs and in investment banking at the Royal Bank of Canada. Beyond her core roles, Sruthi has worked to empower women in and outside her industry, founding a women’s organization while at Money Lion, and now sitting on the Board of Women Creating Change, a non-profit that uplifts under-resourced women in New York City.  She currently holds an MBA from Duke University and a bachelor's degree in Electronics and Communications Engineering from the National Institute of Technology in India, one of the country’s top engineering schools.

    For more episodes, visit southasiantrailblazers.com. Subscribe to our newsletter to get new episodes in your inbox. Follow us @southasiantrailblazers on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

    • 45 min
    Nik Sharma, CEO @ Sharma Brands

    Nik Sharma, CEO @ Sharma Brands

    Simi sits down with Nik Sharma of Sharma Brands. Nik got his start in one of the most unique ways we’ve yet to see on this podcast: by managing  social media for influential celebrities like Priyanka Chopra and Pitbull when he was just 15 years old. With that as his start, Nik decided to forgo college to make his mark in advertising and marketing. He eventually made his way to Hint Water to lead their Direct to Consumer (D2C) business. He also built audiences for Bustle Media Group and Refinery 29 and served as Head of D2C for VaynerMedia. 
    This all paved the path to Sharma Brands, where Nik advises companies on how grow and scale online.  His portfolio of companies he advises and has invested in spans Morning Brew, Pill Club, JUDY, Orgain, and The Juggernaut. And because advising wasn’t enough, he recently launched a rolling fund called Masala Capital. In this episode, we dive into Nik's moniker as the "D2C guy," his origin story, and what it means to define brands of the modern era.

    For more episodes, visit southasiantrailblazers.com. Subscribe to our newsletter to get new episodes in your inbox. Follow us @southasiantrailblazers on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

    • 43 min
    Geetha Murali, CEO @ Room to Read

    Geetha Murali, CEO @ Room to Read

    In this episode, Simi welcomes Geetha Murali, CEO at Room to Read.

    Dr. Geetha Murali is the first non-founder CEO of Room to Read, an international education nonprofit that seeks to transform millions of children’s lives through the power of education. In her 12 years with them, Geetha has expanded Room to Read’s presence to 20 countries and reached 20 million children globally.  Geetha began her nonprofit journey as a Program Officer at the American India Foundation, an organization committed to improving the lives of under-resourced individuals in India. Prior to that, she spent time in the world of pharma, startups, and as a teacher. 
    A senior leader in the industry, Geetha is also a member of Forbes Nonprofit Council, an invitation-only organization for executives at nonprofits. She holds an impressive BS in Biostatistics and a PhD in South Asian politics, and a member of the Young President’s Organization. Her extensive and transformational work in nonprofits has been recognized by the former First Lady Michelle Obama and the Gates Foundation. In this episode, Geetha gives Simi a peek behind the scenes into the world of nonprofit leadership, from an organizational redesign during the pandemic to her path to the sector.

    For more episodes, visit southasiantrailblazers.com. Subscribe to our newsletter to get new episodes in your inbox. Follow us @southasiantrailblazers on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

    • 54 min

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5
57 Ratings

57 Ratings

feryymano bilo ,

Must listen

So interesting to hear about the stories of fellow Southasians across many different fields. Really informative and inspiring!

Appalachian Application ,

Always learning something new

I absolutely love this podcast! I’m always learning from influential South Asians throughout the different episodes. This was much needed for our community

Renzo_lemonhead ,

Love it

All Southasians please listen. Great podcast, i enjoy it thoroughly.

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