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Educate Yourself, Explore opportunity, Experience Creativity with our wonderful team members and speakers.

Do you like to Socialize, Network and Learn with other women?

Here is a rare opportunity for women of all ages to connect with extraordinary achievers and other trailblazers from diverse backgrounds and much more at AKKA

Come join us at AKKA 2014 to make new friends, discuss topics that are important to us and learn from popular workshops/demonstrations!!

  • KEYNOTE SPEECH – By Umashri character actress of kannada film industry
  • RECOGNITION – Honor & applaud extraordinary achievers and get inspired !!
    • Origami - Origami is fun, creative, and amazing
    • Painting - Unleash your inner artist
    • Ikebana – Immerse in the Japanese art of flower arrangement!!
    • Blanket Making – As said by our Bapuji, “The simplest acts of kindness are by far more powerful than a thousand heads bowing in prayer.”
    • Hair Style & Make-up – Every day is a fashion show & the world is our run way !
    • Women Empowerment - Leading Women of diverse industries will discuss their successes in rising to the top and how to empower other women to follow in their Footsteps
    • Parenting - Stimulate your thinking with a discussion focused on issues that are important to parents, prospective parents & children


Date & Time Venue Program
Friday Aug 29th, 2014

4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
KaNagle Networking & Recognition
Saturday Aug 30th, 2014

11:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Suryakaanthi Ikebana Demo
Saturday Aug 30th, 2014

12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
Suryakaanthi Painting Demo
Saturday Aug 30th, 2014

3:00 PM to 4:00 PM
Suryakaanthi Make-up & Hairstyle Demo
Saturday Aug 30th, 2014

4:00 PM to 5:00 PM
Suryakaanthi Origami & Blanket Making Workshop
Sunday Aug 31st, 2014

9:00 AM to 10:30 AM
Champaka Parenting Panel Discussion
Sunday Aug 31st, 2014

10:30 AM to 12:00 PM
Champaka Women Empowerment Panel Discussion

Team Members

Vasudha Hegde

Sudha Dev

Prathibha Priyadarshini

Latha Ganapathy

Laxmi Ramamurthy

Nayana Srikanth

Vani Hegde


Social Hour, Networking & Recognition!!!

Let’s mingle & Jingle with amazing women from different walks of life.
Socialize with Film actresses, artists, social workers, sports women and many more!!!

Please join us for a fun filled, festive evening with

  • Light Music
  • Raffle tickets
  • Drinks and Snacks

Honor & applaud extraordinary achievers and get inspired

Inspiration Speach by

UMASHREE - Indian actress and politician

Umashree is an Indian theatre actress and character actress of Kannada Film Industry also well known politician. She was a Member of the Legislative Council in Karnataka. She has done so many varied roles as a character artiste with equal finesse and aplomb. She is interested in politics and was an MLC (Member of Legislative Council) in the Karnataka State Government and currently a sitting President for Other Backward Class Department in Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee.

Umashree participates in positive social activities such as supporting rural and disadvantaged women. She performs on stage in rural villages to highlight their needs. Her election in 2013 as the member for Terdal constituency (Congress Party) allowed Umashree to continue her work.

Awards & Recognition:

She has been awarded with many awards and prizes and to name them a few are:

  • Nominated for the Best Actress award for Gulabi Talkies at Middle East International Film Festival Abu Dhabi 2008.
  • TV Ratna Puraskar award (2010).
  • Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce and Karnataka Film Directors’ Association award for being the first Kannada actress to obtain an international award (2008).
  • Rajyothsava gold medal (1999 - 2000), for service to theatre and film.
  • Karnataka Nataka Academy Award 1997-98.
  • K. V. Shankare Gowda Award 2004-05.

Women's Forum Invited guests for Recognition

ANUPAMA HOSKERE - Director, Dhaatu Center for Sharing Life Skills & Traditional Wisdom

Anupama Hoskere is an Artist and promoter of Arts who is working towards preserving and promoting traditional puppetry & traditional doll making. As a culture educator she is striving to bring about awareness about the Indian system of life. She was trained by Guru. M.R. Ranganatha Rao in Traditional Puppetry of Karnataka. She also trained under Miroslav Trejtnar of Czech Republic in Marionette Construction & Design. Her workshops for children aged 7 to 13 years on Ramayana, Mahabharata and Bhagavata have been received well for the past ten years.

She is also trained as a solo performing artist by Guru. Smt. Narmada in Bharatanatyam & Sri. V.S. Kaushik. As an accomplished bharatanatyam dancer she has scripted and choreographed several dance dramas.

Awards & Recognition:

  • Awarded Senior Fellowship in Puppetry - 2009 by Ministry of Culture Govt. of India.
  • Empanelled artist in Puppetry by the Indian Council for cultural Relations.
  • Ex-Member Sangeeta Nrutya Academy, Bangalore Karnataka.
  • Recipient of the Women International Network – Nav Kiran award & Sagar awards for contribution in the field of puppetry.

MALATHI HOLLA - Arjuna Awardee & Founder, Mathru foundation

Malathi Holla has represented India in Paralympics, Asian games & Common Wealth games. Struck by polio as a child she started to play sports from her wheelchair – javelin, shot-put, discus throw, wheelchair-racing and won 393 gold, 27 silver and 5 bronze medals in national and international events. She stands first as a handicapped with maximum number of gold medals in India. The Indian government conferred the Arjuna Award in 1995, the second highest government honor for athletes.

Through her NGO Mathru foundation (est. 2004) to help differently abled children to be independent, boost their morale & enable them to fight for their rights. She is supporting needy students with homely atmosphere to pursue their studies. Providing them with necessary medical care with required surgeries per need & medical aid like caliper/wheelchair.

Awards & Recognition:

  • Padmashree Award, civilian honor conferred by the Government of India.
  • Honorary Doctorate conferred by Women’s University, Gulbarga, Karnataka, India.
  • K K Birla Foundation award in 1995.
  • The Cambridge University at London Best Woman of the World in 1999.
  • The Human Life Centre in USA acclaimed Malathi as the Best Woman in the same year
  • Received the Rajyotsava Award, Prathiba Sri Award, Margadharsi Award, Prathiba Ratna Award, Best Handicapped Sports Woman Award,
    Best Citizen Award and many more from various organizations in India

Creative Arts & Crafts Workshops!!!

An active brain is an angel's workshop! Here is an opportunity for you to bring out your creative self in a big way!!!

Here is an opportunity choose from lots of popular workshops/demonstration. Let’s Learn together,

  • Origami – Explore the traditional Japanese intricate paper designs.
  • Ikebana - Immerse yourself in the Japanese art of flower arrangement.
  • Make-up & Hairstyle – Join the exclusive hair/makeup party and transform yourself.
  • Blanket Making – Learn, Make and donate blankets as a gesture of kindness.
  • Painting – Be an artist! Draw, Create! Don’t have to know how. Come learn and have fun!

Guest Introduction for Women's Forum Workshops & Demo

MARTINA ROETHIG - Owner / Designer of Spirit of Ikebana

Martina Roethig began the studies of Ikebana Sogetsu School in 1995, when she came to the United States. Prior to that she lived in France, Germany, and Czech Republic where she grew up. She received her first level teacher certificate in 2000. Today she holds four teacher diplomas, highest to date Jonin Sanyo. Martina is now working towards the fifth level of teaching diploma. Martina is a member of Sogetsu Teacher Association in Tokyo, Ikebana International San Francisco Chapter, Sogetsu San Jose South Bay Branch, and Ikebana Teachers Federation. She exhibits often in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Dr. SOUMYA MANJUNATH CHAVAN - Artist and Art Researcher

Soumya Manjunath is an accomplished artist. With a Doctorate in Fine Art she has conducted Joint and solo exhibitions of her work in India and Abroad. She has extensive experience of exhibition planning and organisation, executing commissioned works of art, teaching and Art research. She was conferred with Doctor of Philosophy for her work titled "Yantra : The Visual aspects of Sankaraís philosophy" by Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath, Bangalore University.

As the Head of the Department of Visual Arts at Jain University, Bangalore, she is teaching art for the past 8 - 10 years at UG, PG and Research levels.

Awards & Recognition:

  • Fellow of Indian council of Historical Research, New Delhi (1999-2000).
  • Life Member - Indian Art History Congress, India.
  • Executive Member - Mantram Art Foundation, Bangalore, India.
  • Member of BOE Gulbarga University

DEEPIKA RAO - Origami Artist

Deepika is originally from Bangalore and she currently living in Santa Clara, CA. She has been folding Origami modules for an year and a half now. It started as a hobby but for the past couple of years, Deepika has mastered this art and it is amazing to see her make beautiful Origami design effortlessly. Deepika has mastered origami and regularly gives demos and conducts classes. She has tried her hand at different forms of Origami like modular origami, tessellations, Kusudama, 3D origami, etc. She is also a classically trained singer her hobbies include cooking, literature, arts and crafts.


Gandhiji once said “The simplest acts of kindness are by far more powerful than a thousand heads bowing in prayer.”

The members of Women's Forum got together to learn the Art of Blanket Making and have woven many beautiful blankets to be donated to organizations like Maitri and Naarika. They will teach you the Art of Blanket making with easy step by step directions. You can help make these blankets in the workshop organized by Women's Forum and make blankets that will be auctioned and donated. Materials are provided by us. You can also take home the knowledge and make your own blankets for the upcoming winter.

Join hands for this act of kindness. Hope you see you in Blanket Making Workshop!

RUBY WALIA - Founder/Owner Ruby's Beauty Studio, Milpitas

Ruby Walia is an accomplished beauty artist in the bay area since 12 years. She is originally from North India and holds a degree in Law. She later developed her interests in Beauty and health and earned Cosmetology and hair design certificate from Monterey Academy. She also attended several courses to master her skills like "Ashkumar Academy (London Based) Dawn Til Dusk", Professional Makeup Inc, Newyork etc. She is also a faculty of beauty schools educating people about hair style and makeup.

Her passion and dedication stood out everywhere and her professionalism kept her clientele coming back. The Born Beautician makes sure each client receives a custom tailored consultation and hair analysis prior to experiencing any service, which will then allow her to transform each client into the true celebrity that's deep within, because to her every client is a star. She also styled the celebrities like Amrita Rao, Neha Dhupia, Kavitha Krishmamurthy, Shakti Mohan, & Roger Narayan. Her work has been published in "California South Asian Bride".

Leading Women of Diverse Industries Will Discuss Their successes in Rising to the Top and How to Empower other Women to Follow in Their Footsteps.

  • The panel discussion will be followed by a brief Q and A from the audience.
  • The panel will have leading women who are trailblazing the path to success for others.

Living as immigrant in western country and parenting challenges.

  • Participate in a panel discussion focused on issues that are important to parents and children. The Panel will stimulate thinking about challenges faced.
  • A conversation that is must for parents, prospective parents and teens.

Please join hands in sharing experiences.

Women's forum Panelist Introduction

ARUNA BHAT - Planning Director, Contra Costa City, California

Aruna Bhat graduated from University Visvesvaraya College of Engineering (UVCE) Bangalore with Bachelor of Architecture. Further she completed her Master's degree in Urban and Regional Planning from San Jose State University. I am the Planning Director for Contra Costa County. I previously worked as a City Planner for the City and County of San Francisco and the Town of Danville.

ANU NATARAJAN - Councilmember

Councilmember Anu Natarajan has lived in Fremont for 14 years. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Architecture and a Masters degree in Urban Design and Planning from the University of Washington. Her professional experience includes working as an architect, public agency planner, and as an urban planning consultant

Through a community-based planning process, she believes in creating well-designed, sustainable, and livable communities, which is essential to fostering economic growth.

Councilmember Natarajan served on the Fremont Planning Commission from January 2003 to December 2004. She volunteers with community organizations, and also enjoys exploring new cities and their architecture, meeting people, and reading.

RAJI ARASU - StubHub's Chief Technology Officer

As StubHub's Chief Technology Officer, Raji Arasu leads all product and engineering functions for StubHub. Joining StubHub in 2011 from eBay, Raji brings more than 23 years of experience in software development, specializing in online commerce and payments business. Under Raji's leadership, her organization has led numerous technology innovations that are now foundational to eBay's business including building out the fixed price format in 2001, integrating PayPal with MP in 2002, pioneering eBay checkout in 2003, introducing the first shipping services on eBay in 2004, leading application teams through three generations of site redesign, re-architecting of the Trading flows and helping make cart and payment intermediation a reality.

As one of the only female CTOs at a major technology company across the industry, Raji is passionate about growing women leaders in technology both within the company and externally. She is an executive sponsor for eBay Women in Technology and was recognized by
Business Journal of Silicon Valley/San Jose
as a "Woman of Influence" in 2011. She is also a member of Women in Technology International (WITI) and FountainBlue, whose focus is on the advancement of women in technology.

Raji earned a Bachelor's degree in computer engineering from Pune University, India. She is a fan of the San Francisco 49ers and enjoys running, skiing and traveling. In 2012, Raji used her five-week sabbatical (a benefit earned by eBay and StubHub employees after five years with the company) to travel with her son to serve a remote and impoverished community in India. There the two of them tutored young monks and nuns and the visually impaired in the subjects of science and English.

SHALINI URS - Founder and Chairperson MYRA School of Business

Dr. Shalini Urs is an academic and instition builder having interest in all matters of the mind—from creativity to cognitive to cultural. Her area of specialisation is “Data Science”. She is a Fulbright scholar and taught at Virginia Tech, USA during 2000- 2001. She has also been visiting professor at the Indian Statistical Institute, Bangalore and has served as an UNESCO expert on several assignments.

Shalini has been a faculty of the University of Mysore for the last 38 years teaching courses in Information Systems and Management. Her major accomplishments include the Ford Foundation funded Vidyanidhi Digital Library project—an internationally known Indian open access repositoy of theses and dissertations. He forte is her leadership and organising abilities. She has founded two instituions—the International School of Information Management at the University of Mysore and also the MYRA School of Business.

Widely traveled, invited to speak at various international and national conferences, Shalini is a sought after speaker on wide ranging topics. She has won many awards inclusing the NDLTD-Adobe Leadership award in 2004 and Mortenson Distinguished Lecturer at the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, USA in 2010

SUDHA DEV - Associate Partner in Global Business Services at IBM

Sudha Dev is an Associate Partner in Global Business Services at IBM. She is an innovative and high achieving professional with executive level experience skills, vision and a commitment to excellence. With a passion for strategic and collaborative approaches cross-functional and external partnerships to maximize organizational success and client needs. She is equipped with 24 years of international experience, providing strategy, leadership, governance and strategic support to international markets.

Sudha has lived and worked in over 12 countries which required active understanding of diverse markets, stakeholders and teams. Her success has been dependent on her ability to understand not only the company services, but those of the competition, and industry trends. Forging ahead with efforts that drive meaningful results is her passion.

Sudha presents at Women and Asian conference motivating women and mentors people across the globle. She actively participate in provides organizational support to NGO's.


Karen Vasudev retired as an IT Manager at Cisco Systems after 16 years of service. She also held management positions in technical support at Sybase, FMC Corp., and the Farm Credit Banks.

Karen immersed herself in Indian culture learning about art, cultural traditions, religious festivals, Batik, Rangoli art, and the art of cooking Indian food. She spends time involving herself in Indian cultural activities, artistic pursuits like Madhubani painting, ceramic art, crochet, and volunteers at the India Community Center for children's art activities. Because of Karen's language skills she has acted in at least 5 Kannada plays performing in the San Francisco Bay Area and other venues around the US, (including 3 AKKA conventions). In addition, she had minor roles in 2 Kannada movies, America America and Nanna Preethiya Hudugi.

GEETHA RAVINDRA - Mediator for the International Monetary Fund

Geetha Ravindra is an attorney, mediator and trainer with over 20 years of experience in the field of Alternative Dispute Resolution. She is currently the Mediator for the International Monetary Fund. Geetha served in key positions at the Department of Dispute Resolution Services, Supreme Court of Virginia and Dalkon Shield Arbitration Program. She was an Adjunct Professor at the University of Richmond School of Law and the College of William and Mary Law School teaching mediation.

She also provides legal advice and guidance to dozens of Indian families dealing with difficult marital issues. She has mediated workplace matters for the Navy, Veterans Administration, Department of Energy, and Virginia Employment Dispute Resolution Agency.


Writer by hobby, poet by passion, therapist by profession, compassionate by nature, Jyothi Mahadev is born and brought up in and around Udupi and Mangaluru districts. She has published four collections of poems (bhaava lahari, bhaava gaana, bhaava bimba, bhaava lOka), one collection of short stories and essays (bhaava yaana), and one CD of her poems (hELu manasE) sung by well known singers from Udupi/ Manipal area. Her literary works are in her pen-name "suptadeepti".

Her poems and short stories are well recieved and recognised by several Kannada magazines published by many Kannada Associations of USA. A short story "Shivaani" bagged a first prize in "Global Kannada short story contest"; a poem "hELu manasE" received first place in "World Kannada poetry contest"; both conducted by reputed periodicals and web portals of Karnataka. Recently, 2 of her short stories are translated into Urdu, under Central Urdu Academy.

HHer educational background consists of BSc from Mangaluru Univarsity, MA- Kannada from KSOU Mysore, Associate Arts (AA)-Psychology, Personal Fitness Training (CPFt), and Hypnotherapy (CHt) certifications from reputed institutions in California, USA. She has established Inner Light Wellness Center at Manipal where she practices hypnotherapy and fitness training since 2010.

VISHVANATH HULIKAL - Sr. Engineering Trainer working in NetApp

Vishvanath Hulikal is has been a software developer for more than two decades, involved in the development of Local Area Networks, Network Security and Backup and Recovery Software. He has worked for companies like Microsoft, Wipro Information Technology Limited and EMC Corporation. Currently, he is a Sr. Engineering Trainer working in NetApp, Sunnyvale, CA.

He holds a B.S. degree in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics from Mysore University, another B.S. degree in Electrical Technology and Electronics from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore and an M.S. in Computer Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur.

He is an author, a translator, and a public speaker. He has nine published books to his credit. He writes short stories, essays, and articles on literary criticism. He has translated some of the famous works of Bertrand Russell, John Steinbeck, and John Gray into Kannada. He is one of the authors who have contributed the story to a Kannada film titled America, America. He has also edited the book titled Dots and Lines which is a collection of representative Kannada short stories translated into English. He founded and had been running Sahitya Goshti to promote Kannada literature in the Bay Area since 2001.

One of the popular Kannada TV Channels Udaya TV interviewed him and introduced him to the people of Karnataka (11-12-2004). He had been awarded the State award called Suvarna Karnataka for his contributions to literature (11-14-2005). Many Kannada organizations in the U.S. have also felicitated him for his organization and contributions to Kannada literature.

KRISHNA MADHUSUDAN - Freshman at U.C Irvine doing B.S in Computer Science

Krishna Madhusudan is a freshman at U.C Irvine doing B.S in Computer Science. He graduated from Evergreen Valley High School have been Co-Captain of Speech and Debate teams. He has taken part in several KKNC productions including dance programs and drama's. He was in youth committee for KKNC and have written several articles to KKNC Magzine.

He was panelist for College Counselling Panel Discussions organized by KKNC.

RACHITA UPADHYA - 12th grader at James Logan Highschool.

Rachita Upadhya is going to 12th grade at James Logan Highschool.She is the varsity tennis team (captain). She involved herself in her school band when she was in her middle school. She participated in several KKNC activites like dramas, dance etc. This year she stood first in Women’s Tennis at KKNC sports meet. Her hobbies are gardening, dance, Music, Crochet. She is also trained in ‘Bharatanatyum dance’ for 6 years, and Hindustani vocal for 4 years. She is planning to purse Science/Engineering.

MADHURA NADIG - Systems Engineer, Lockheed Martin Corporation

Madhura Nadig is a Systems Engineering professional originally from Bangalore. She works for Lockheed Martin Corporation in southern New Jersey, where she lives with her husband Dr.Ranga Nadig. Together they have raised two sons, Alok, a law student and Ajay, a college sophomore. They have been active in the local Kannada association Triveni in several capacities including organizing Triveni's silver jubilee celebrations when Ranga served as its president. An alumna of U.V.C.E and IISc, Madhura is looking forward to reconnecting with her friends from these institutions at WKC-San Jose.