Annual ceremony is held on July 4th weekend.
By Deepak Chitnis
WASHINGTON, DC: Four Indian Americans were honored last week at the annual Great Immigrants ceremony, which honors achievements made by first-generation immigrants in their adoptive country.
The Great Immigrants organization feted comedian and actor Aasif Mandvi, new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, University of West Georgia President Beheruz Sethna, and Carnegie Mellon President Subra Suresh. The ceremony took place in New York City on July 4; it is held every year on that weekend, in order to commemorate American independence with the achievements of the country’s naturalized immigrants.
Mandvi (48) is originally from Mumbai, and immigrated to the US when he was 16 years old. He is perhaps best known as a regular correspondent and contributor on “The Daily Show,” the Comedy Central satirical news program starring Jon Stewart. In addition, he has become an increasingly prolific actor, filling small roles in big-screen successes like Spider-Man 2, The Last Airbender, and most recently, Million Dollar Arm.
Nadella (47), who came to the US in the 1980s, has been with Microsoft for over 20 years, and became the software giant’s third CEO ever in February of this year. Originally from Hyderabad, he came to the US for his post-graduate studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where he earned his master’s degree in computer science, and an additional master’s degree from the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago, this time in business administration.
Sethna was born in 1948 and came to the US after earning degrees from IIT Bombay and IIM Ahmedabad. When he became the University of West Georgia’s sixth-ever President, he also became the first Indian American in US history to be appointed to the helm of a US-based institution. He is currently retired, but remains active in teaching and academic circles.
Suresh, originally from Chennai, is the current President of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, which is one of the leading engineering and STEM schools in the country. He came to the US in the 1970s for his post-graduate studies. In addition to being with Carnegie Mellon, he was appointed by President Barack Obama to join the national Science Foundation in 2010, and acted as its director until last year.