Maneesha was born in Sheetalnath, Srinagar and was there until the beginning of her 3rd grade. Post exodus, her parents; Ashok, Meena and sister, Aneesha moved to Hyderabad which eventually became their second Home. She has been in the United States since 2008. She is a Speech Language Pathologist and practices in San Jose.
She loves to travel, learn new cultures and languages, go to art shows and museums, and listen to Kashmiri and Native American music.
Maneesha was first elected to KOA Board of Directors in January of 2014 and has been the Director of Zone 9 since then.
Her passion for Kashmir started from seeing how her parents and grandparents longed to go to this place they once called ‘home’. She thinks that the youth with their enthusiasm and the elders with their experience can bring the community together and help every one of us stay connected to the land of our roots.
Her goal for KOA Youth is to identify the key initiatives that the Youth would like to undertake, to integrate youth activities within the existing structure of KOA and to continue to lay the foundations for the future leaders and office bearers of KOA.
Arti was born in Mumbai and moved to NY with her family when she was 3 and a half years old. They visited Kashmir a few years back for the first time since leaving in 1990, including their old home and many of the major sites. She loved it there! Her family has always been very involved in the KOA community and she used to attend many of the functions when she was younger. As a lawyer currently working in NYC, she is excited to meet more KP youth and learn more about Kashmiri language and culture. She would love to meet other KOA youth and attend/help plan events.
Sahana was originally born in Chandigarh, India and moved with her parents to the United States as a young girl. She completed her Bachelors in Business Administration from Bryant University in Smithfield, RI and finished her Masters from the University of Bristol, United Kingdom. She is currently working at Bank of Montreal in New York City. She likes reading and swimming when she can, and is trying her hand at painting. Her passion with regards to Kashmir and KOA Youth is to resurrect our language so that our culture, our hopes and dreams, and our identity endures no matter where we are. She believes this is important for the future of our people.
Amrita was born in Kashmir and lived there for 5 years in Rainawari before moving to Bangalore during 1990 with her parents. Electrical engineer by profession and a Kashmiri at heart, majority of her career, she has worked for the Indian defense and Airbus Defence & Space as a RADAR engineer and currently working as a Senior Development Engineer for a medical device startup CurveBeam in Pennsylvania. Fluent in Kashmiri, she loves to sing koshur songs, travel, read, and EAT! Her vision for the KOA Youth is to have a tight knit and integrated community in North America. Her aim is to grow KOA Youth programs in a systematic and consistent way. She constantly strives to grow the volunteering team with bright and passionate youth members and brainstorm new ideas.
Nisha hails from Zone 4 (DMV area). As a kid, she has always been involved in her local events, gatherings, and celebrations. KOA has always been seen as family in her household, not just a community of friends. As a representative of the KOA Youth Initiative, she believes we have reached an important point in KOA’s lifetime where we need to assess the organization’s sustainability and future. The youth is the answer and she is glad to be given the opportunity to spearhead this new program. Things she is interested in working on are: creating an exclusive KOA youth summer weekend (“camp”), preserving Kashmiri language, and building a network of American-Kashmiri youth. On a local level, three young adults in Zone 4 (Komal Bazaz-Smith, Rishi Mattoo, Naeha Quasba) along with Nisha started “Kashmiri School” in 2013 where students come from the DMV area every 3 months for a 3 hour session filled with dialogue exchange, culture education, and exposure to Kashmiri history. They have started to live stream the sessions, so please do tune in. Nisha went to University of Maryland for her undergraduate degree and is now getting her Masters in Public Health at George Washington University in DC. She danced on UMD’s Bhangra team for 4 years and her love for the dance has only grown since!
Sidharth is a 2016 graduate from the University of Texas at Dallas and currently works in Round Rock, Texas with Dell Software. He loves organizing desi events ranging from weddings and graduations to dance competitions and conventions. He resides in Austin and loves playing sports, watching anime, eating food, and going outdoors. He has a strong connection to his Kashmiri culture thanks to his parents Sanjay and Pammy. His vision is to ultimately help develop life long bonds between Kashmiris throughout North America.
Somya originally hails from New Jersey, but currently attends a 7 year medical program in Fort Lauderdale, Florida! Her goal for KOA youth is to rediscover our roots, connect with other KOA youth, and keep our culture alive. She believes she can help by contributing hervigor for keeping our beautiful culture alive and by spreading the Kashmiri Pandit influence in Southern Florida.
Having been born in Srinagar just two weeks after the infamous “KP Exodus Day” in 1990, Nisha has always yearned to know what life would be like had her family gotten the privilege to stay in Kashmir. She has visited once since and it was a truly amazing trip as she was able to experience the incredible land she has heard so many stories about. After her family immigrated to America when she was a baby, her family settled in Ohio and now she is an Internal Medicine resident in Cleveland, Ohio (Go Buckeyes/Cavs/Tribe!). She is excited to connect with KP youth, learn more about our culture, get involved in our community through various events, and to start a mentorship program. She can help teach Kashmiri and would love to help build a list of mentors nationwide/a mentorship program.
Simran is a Business Administration major at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Her exposure to and involvement in KOA began at a very young age, lending her a greater awareness for her cultural identity. She is very excited to contribute to the youth group, which she hopes will:
– provide a collaborative platform to reach our goals as a community (i.e., preserving the language)- be a place where people set aside private interests for the betterment of the community and the promotion of our heritage in society.
Kashyap is a Software Developer from Zone 10. He loves the beautiful year-round Californian summer. He lives in Los Angeles and loves the outdoors, which include activities like soccer, beach volleyball, skating and hiking. He also enjoys dancing and building projects that bring art and technology together. He has moved every 3-4 years of his life and would love to continue the trend going forward, picking up bits of culture and languages along the way, while trying to achieve proficiency in Kashmiri.
Powered by Company Name Company Name