Indian American Couple Donates $1 Million to Kennedy Center for Cultural Events

An Indian American couple has donated $1 million to Washington’s landmark cultural institution, the Kennedy Center, to create a fund for organizing a series of Indian cultural events for several years.

The money donated by Ranvir Trehan and Adarsh Trehan will be used to organize events on India’s history, traditions, literature, music, dance and culture at the top American institution for performing arts.

“There is a need and desire for sustained India programming at the Kennedy Center for many years to come and I see this as a broad based effort by individuals both in the Indian American community and others interested in Indian culture from foundations and MNCs,” Ranvir Trehan said.

India’s Ambassador to the U.S. Navtej Sarna said the Trehans’ initiative was “the encouragement that we need.”

“The Indian arts are at a very interesting phase… It surprises me constantly because we are all used to a certain vision of Indian culture, but if you now put on a new film or you see a new dance performance, you are always surprised because people are always crossing borders in different directions,” Sarna said.

According to an earlier report by IANS in India-West, Trehan came to the U.S. in 1964 after receiving a BS from BITS. He is chairman of the Trehan Foundation, a philanthropic organization he founded for giving primarily for international development in 2003. It is focused on global poverty, as well as a performing arts center and human services.

Previously, Trehan was vice chairman of Apptis Holdings, Inc. from 2005 to 2011 and was founder and CEO of SETA Corporation from 1987 to 2005, according to the White House.

Trehan was a department head of Information and Communications Systems from 1985 to 1987 and a member of the technical staff from 1969 to 1985 at The MITRE Corporation.

He is a member of the Board of Directors of CARE and a former member of the board of the Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts. He holds an MSE from the University of Michigan, and an MBA from the University of Dayton.

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