Saheli Boston, a community-based non-profit organization in Massachusetts founded in 1996 with a mission to empower South Asian women and their families to live safe and healthy lives, has appointed Dr. Manju Sheth, MD as Chair and Ramila Thakkar as Vice Chair of Saheli’s Board of Advisors.
Dr. Sheth is an internist focused on women’s health and works at Beth Israel Lahey Health. In 2013, she served as the President of the Indian Medical Association of New England. She is the President and CEO of the India New England Multimedia, a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering, entertaining, and educating the Boston community through video interviews, health related events, and the organization’s flagship event – The New England Choice Awards/NECA Awards, where they celebrate industry leaders in several important categories.
Dr. Sheth is also the Director and hostess of ‘Woman of the Year” that has honored 20 women in various fields every year for the past 17 years. She has received numerous awards for her community work, leadership and advocacy and was voted “Woman of the Year” in 2011, featured as a “Notable Bostonian” in the Boston Globe, and was voted in the “150 Women of Influence” by the YWCA Boston and amongst 50 most influential Indians in NE in 2012. Most recently, Dr. Sheth is a Co-Founder and the President of Women Who Win #Dreamcatchers, a global media platform for women empowerment across all ages, industries and backgrounds. Dr. Sheth was the co-chair of Indian Women Physicians Forum. She has served on the Clinical advisory committee at Harvard Pilgrim Health Care and was appointed in February 2018 to the prestigious Patient Care Assessment Committee at Harvard Pilgrim Health Care. Previously, she served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence.
Ms. Thakkar is a current member of the Saheli Advisory Board, and a past President of Gurjar Gujarati Association of New England, where she served on the board for last 25 years, from 1994 to 2019. With Gurjar, she held various positions, concluding with her second term as a President before retiring in 2019. Prior to joining Gurjar, she was with Sishu Bharti for 10 years, (Indian culture and language school in Burlington), where she spent 10 years, first as a kindergarten teacher then was on the school committee for the last two years.
Gurjar won the NECA award during her Presidency, as the best community organization in New England. Ms. Thakkar was also in the top twenty for the Women of the year Award. She is core member of the Finance team at Lahey Clinic Hospital in Burlington for the last 37 years. A graduate of St. Mary’s College in Shillong, Meghalaya in India, she subsequently attended Bentley College for her accounting studies. Community service comes natural to her, as a child was taught that ‘giving’ was better than ‘taking’. Her passion is reading and languages. She is a resident of Burlington since 1981.
Neelam Wali said in a statement here: “I have known both Manju and Ramila for a long time as friends and respect their commitment to social causes. We are delighted to welcome Manju Sheth as Chair of the Saheli Advisory Committee and Ramila as Vice Chair,” said newly appointed Saheli President Neelam Wali, who earlier served as Chair of the Saheli Advisory Committee. “They both have been Saheli supporter. We value their contribution to Nirbhaya fundraisers in the past. We also appreciate their work with other community organizations in our town. We believe these experiences along with understanding of the domestic violence in South Asian Communities will continue to help our team at Saheli and Saheli Survivors.” Ms. Wali said that her vision for Saheli is broad and that she is looking to add more committed people like Dr. Sheth and Ms. Thakkar to Saheli Advisory Committee.