NEW YORK: Two prominent Indian-American executives are among 19 people appointed by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio as members to an organisation that addresses the city's most pressing challenges, with a particular focus on improving the lives of vulnerable New Yorkers.
Hotel Association of New York City President and CEO Vijay Dandapani and Insight Venture Partners Managing Director Deven Parekh, along with 17 other individuals have been appointed members to the Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City Board of Advisors.
Dandapani is a hotel industry veteran, recognised in 1998 as one of Crain's New York Business top 100 minority business leaders in New York City.
In 2002, the Asian American Business Development Center, New York selected him as one of 50 outstanding Asian Americans in Business. He is an alumnus of Cornell University's School of Hotel Administration.
According to its website, the Hotel Association of New York City is one of the oldest professional trade associations in the nation.
Currently it represents 280 hotels, 80,000 rooms and about 50,000 employees. Parekh manages investments in vertical and horizontal software and consumer internet companies globally.
He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Economic Club of NY and the Greater NY Partnership.
He was nominated by former president Barack Obama, and confirmed by the US Senate to serve on the Overseas Private Investment Corporation Board.
In addition, he is chairman emeritus of Publicolor, a New York City based non-profit organisation that focuses on inner city schools.
During the period 20102012, he served as a Member of the Advisory Board of the US Export-Import Bank which is the official export credit agent of the United States.
Parekh is regularly featured on Forbes' list of the world's top venture capitalists.
For over 20 years, the Board of Advisors has provided expertise and critical support for the Fund as it pursues its goal of creating innovative and evidence-based approaches to address the City's most pressing challenges, a press statement issued yesterday said.
"To address the challenges facing our city, we need all New Yorkers pushing for progress together including those in our robust private sector," de Blasio said.
First Lady Chirlane McCray, Chair of the Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City said the administration depends on New York City's civic leaders to partner with government to make the city more vibrant and equitable.
Founded in 1994, the Mayor's Fund is a not-for-profit organisation which annually works with an average of over 80 City programs, projects and initiatives; over 300 institutional funders; and more than 100 community-based organizations.
The Mayor's Fund and its partners work on a diverse set of initiatives that address needs across the city's five boroughs, with a particular focus on improving the lives of vulnerable New Yorkers and New Yorkers in need.
The Fund has made strategic investments to promote mental health services for all New Yorkers, increase workforce development opportunities for young New Yorkers, and meet the needs of New York City's diverse immigrant community.
Recently, the Mayor's Fund has supported relief work in response to the unprecedented natural disasters that hit Puerto Rico, Texas and the Caribbean, including collecting USD 1.7 million in aid for residents displaced by Hurricane Maria.