Nina Tandon, Rajan Anandan, Ayesha Khanna and Zainab Ghadiyali are the for Indian Americans who have been featured in Foreign Policy magazine’s recent list of 100 Leading Global Thinkers, according to a news report.
The list, released Dec. 1, profiles people who have generated ideas that could promise humankind a better future. It features categories including Decision-Makers, Challengers, Innovators, Advocates, Artists, Healers, Stewards, Chroniclers and Moguls.
Tandon, the co-founder of New York-based EpiBone, was featured among the Innovators, which singled out those whose work has advanced “progress in global health, human rights, security and more.”
The magazine said Tandon was featured “for healing broken bones by growing new ones.” Typically, to reconstruct bone, surgeons must take bone either from somewhere else in a patient’s body, necessitating a double surgery, or from an outside source, such as a prosthesis or a donor.
But Tandon has created a third way: growing new bones. A patient’s stem cells are placed in a bone-shaped mold, which is then put into a special chamber that simulates the body’s temperature, nutrient composition and other conditions.
After three weeks, the cells have essentially formed a new bone. This method requires only one surgery and avoids implanting foreign materials, thereby reducing pain and complications, Foreign Policy noted.
EpiBone has successfully replaced the jaw of a pig and is gearing up to start its first clinical trials, to be held within two years. Anandan, the managing director of Google Southeast Asia and India; and Khanna, the Indian American founder of Civic Accelerator, an investment fund company for socially conscious enterprises, were among the Moguls. The group features those who have “showed that progress is possible, whether in corner offices or on factory floors.”
While Sri Lanka-born Anandan is included “for lobbying on behalf of the unconnected,” Khanna was chosen “for nudging women into the corner office.”
Anandan “has used his stewardship of Google in India to greatly improve tech access for the poor by successfully lobbying Indian manufacturers to launch low-cost phones, pushing carriers to bring down the prices of data plans, and increasing the translation of Google products into many Indian languages.”
Additionally, the magazine added that “he’s also one of the country’s most active tech investors: Between January 2014 and June 2015, he was the most prolific, according to Quartz, investing in 15 start-ups.” Anandan’s work, FP added, “simply proves that good business doesn’t have to be at odds with good citizenry.”
In November 2014, Khanna and Shannon Schuyler, head of corporate responsibility at PricewaterhouseCoopers, pooled resources to help women gain access to capital. This spring, with PwC funding, Civic Accelerator’s group of 13 U.S. start-ups — all of which had at least one female founder, and 11 of which were started entirely by women — participated in a 10-week boot camp to test ideas and connect with investors.
Khanna and Schuyler have pledged that at least half of future accelerator-supported ventures will be owned by women. India-born Ghadiyali was featured among the Challengers who have “proved that even sacred cows can be toppled.” The magazine said Ghadiyali was chosen “for cracking the STEM ceiling.”
In Menlo Park, Calif., Ghadiyali and Erin Summers, both engineers at Facebook, are running “wogrammers,” a movement to end the “brogrammer” stereotype and highlight the technical accomplishments of their peers. In its first year, wogrammers highlighted 50 female engineers from around the globe.