From software to aerospace, literature to business, the Indian diaspora has outstanding leaders in almost every walk of life. When it comes to leadership in community work it becomes very difficult not to highlight significantly one name—that of Mr Inder Singh who’s on our cover this special issue. As you read through his story, you’ll realize that it takes something exceptional and well beyond the ordinary to be a community leader that year after year dedicates himself to the service of others—in this case members of the Indian diaspora all over the world. There has to be an inherent and abiding intent of doing good for others, for community leaders do not charge for doing what they do, and the recognition for all their hard work does not come easy. Besides, resources for community work are always stretched, so getting the best out of others becomes an absolute necessity, and motivation levels need to remain really high.
As a community leader, Mr Singh has rendered yeoman service. In 1989, Mr Singh was the president of the National Federation of Indian American Associations (NFIA) when he, and others like Dr Thomas Abraham (see profile inside), oversaw the organization of the first Global Convention of People of Indian Origin in New York. The seven-day convention attracted 3,000 people and delegates from 22 countries, including community, social, business and political stalwarts of Indian origin from various parts of the globe. At the end of the convention the Global Organisation of People of Indian Origin (GOPIO) International was formed. In later years, Inder Singh was to helm it as president, and as chairman. Three years prior to this, he was the convenor of the 4th National Biennial Convention of the NFIA at Anaheim, Los Angeles that was attended by 2,000 Indian Americans and several political and diplomatic leaders from both USA and India. Mr Singh was the chairman of the organizing committee when India decided to hold its first regional Regional PBD in the west coast of the USA in November 2015. The decision to hold the PBD in California may not have been happenstance—after all Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi had visited the Silicon Valley barely a month before, and addressed 18,000 Indians at the SAP Center in San Jose. In the year 2000 Mr Singh started the India Association of Los Angeles (IALA)—San Fernando Valley and also supported the formation of the India Association of Inland Empire. As you read the cover story you will realize that the kind of community work and leadership Mr Singh has provided is truly inspirational.