Community leader Dr. Thomas Abraham brought back as Chairman of GOPIO International

GOPIO International Chamber of Commerce launched.

GOPIO Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham, Foundation Executive Trustee Inder Singh and Global Ambassador Sunny Kulathakal
GOPIO Chairman Dr. Thomas Abraham, Foundation Executive Trustee Inder Singh and Global Ambassador Sunny Kulathakal

Dr. Thomas Abraham has been brought back as the Chairman of GOPIO International after a lapse of seven years, at a general body meeting of the organization.

The chairman is the head of the organization, as well as coordinates and chairs the general body meeting. The chairman also oversees the functioning executive council, GOPIO Councils and conducting elections every two years. The outgoing chairman Inder Singh was elected as Executive Trustee of the GOPIO Foundation.

A new position, GOPIO’s Global Ambassador, was created by the GOPIO General Body by a constitutional amendment. Outgoing Executive Vice President Sunny Kulathakal from Bahrain was elected as GOPIO’s Global Ambassador. As GOPIO Ambassador, Kulathakal has been given the responsibility to initiate chapters in all those cities and countries where GOPIO is yet to make its presence with chapters and life members, according to a press release.

The GOPIO Chairman, Executive Trustee and GOPIO’s Global Ambassador serve as ex-officio members of the Executive Council headed by President Niraj Baxi, who serves as CEO of the organization.

“GOPIO’s general body also adopted a resolution to launch GOPIO International Chamber of Commerce (GICC). It will be a worldwide body working within the GOPIO organization. The new Executive Council is business-oriented and keenly interested to connect with businesses with India and across the world. The new chamber GICC will focus on some of Indian Prime Minister’s initiatives such as Make in India, Skill India and Digital India. With our 70 chapters in 30 countries, name recognition and with our extensive level of contacts, GOPIO hopes to grow this new chamber as a globally networked business promotion group,” it said in a statement.

Dr. Thomas Abraham coined the word PIO (people of Indian origin) in 1989, when he served as the Convener of the First Convention of People of Indian Origin in New York. Dr. Abraham initiated, nurtured and built up several community institutions, including the Federation of Indian Association (FIA) of New York Metro Area, the National Federation of Indian-American Associations (NFIA), GOPIO, National Indian American Association for Senior Citizens (NIAASC) and South Asian Council for Social Services (SACSS). He was also co-founder of Indian American Kerala Center in New York and served as co-chair for the campaign to raise funds for Jagdish Bhagwati Chair for Indian Political Economy at Columbia University. A material scientist and nanotechnologist by profession, Dr. Abraham is president of Innovative Research and Products, Inc.

Inder Singh regularly writes and speaks on Indian Diaspora. He is the author of ‘The Gadar Heroics – life sketches of over 50 Gadar heroes’. He is Executive Trustee of GOPIO Foundation, was chairman of Global Organization of People of Indian Origin from 2009-16 and president from 2004-2009, chairman of National Federation of Indian American Associations (NFIA) from 1992-96 and president from 1988-92. He was founding president of Federation of Indian Associations in Southern California.

Publicist, author, publisher and community worker Sunny Kulathakal is a post-graduate in economics. After a stint in the editorial department of a leading newspaper, he served as the Director of Development Department of a college in Bangalore for eight years. From 1977 onwards in the Middle East, Kulathakal did a series of research studies on Indians in the Gulf which were published as cover stories in the Illustrated Weekly of India. From 2004 onwards, Kulathakal is in Bahrain publishing The Gulf Who’s Who Directory. After receiving the community service award from GOPIO in 2004, he has been serving GOPIO in various capacities.

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