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Meet the Team


Our team is growing rapidly. It started from one person running community calls, to a group of passionate volunteers who are drawn to the vision of a loving, inclusive Desi community. Each person on our team brings their unique skills and perspective to support our mission.


Contact us if you are interested in joining our team!

Our Staff

Our Staff

Aruna Rao | NJ

Executive Director

Aruna (she, her, hers) founded Desi Rainbow Parents & Allies after a 20 year career in mental health advocacy and activism with a focus on the needs of immigrant families. She is the proud parent of a transgender young adult. 

Our Board

Our Board

Rayman Kaur Mathoda | CA


Rayman (she, her, hers) is a Sikh-American lesbian multi-time CEO, social entrepreneur and community activist who serves or has served on corporate and community based organizational boards. 

Kunoor Chopra | CA

Board Member

Kunoor (she/her) is an out South Asian Lesbian and an advocate for LGBTQIA+ rights. She is a Co-Founder and VP of Legal Services at Elevate, a firm providing technology, consulting and services and a recognized authority in the legal industry on topics related to women.

K. S. Mohan | NJ


K.S. Mohan (he, him, his) has been a financial professional for over 40 years, holding varied management positions in the accounting and financial field. He is the proud father of a queer daughter.

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Mridula Udayagiri | CA

Board Member

Mridula Udayagiri (she/her), Professor Emeritus of Sociology, CSUS, has extensive experience as an academic in higher education and in nonprofit work both in the US and India. She recently retired as the Executive Director of the Center for Engaged Scholarship.

Anupam Dev Goel | NJ


A Graduate from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi, Anupam Dev Goel (he, him, his) is an Indian small towner and a first generation immigrant. He dreams of creating a more accessible and accepting world.

Our Team

Our Team

Anitha Chennat | MI

Event Planning Coordinator

Anitha (she, her, hers) is the proud parent of a non-binary queer adult child. She manages biomedical research operations in an academic setting. Her passions include dancing & teaching Bharatanatyam, participating in local GOTV efforts, mentoring, gardening, cooking, traveling and bee-keeping.

Meryl Haque

Support Group Coordinator

Meryl (they/them) first came to Desi Rainbow in early 2021 seeking support with bridging their many identities – Assamese, Muslim, American, queer, transgender, and nonbinary. They feel very fortunate to have found such abundant affirmation, compassion, and love within the Desi Rainbow community, and they are excited to reciprocate through this position. 


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Sri Chivukula | NJ

Publications Coordinator

Sri (she, her, hers) is a seasoned IT professional and mom of 2 daughters. She is a voracious reader of mysteries and thrillers. She is passionate about children's literature and is looking forward to supporting Desi Rainbow families.

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Hima Sathian | PA

Saathi Peer Support Coordinator

 Hima (they, them, theirs) is a social worker by training, and currently works as a trauma counselor at a crime victims center in PA. They live with their partner in Pennsylvania and are proud of their Malayali roots.

Saif Issani | GA

CRM & Database/Analytics Administrator 

Saif (he, him, his) is from the Atlanta metro area, and began working as Database Admin for Desi Rainbow in January 2023. He graduated Cum Laude from Georgia State University with a B.B.A in Computer Information Systems. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his family, his partner, and hiking.


Vidya Mohan
Vidya Mohan | NJ

Finance and Bookkeeping

Vidya (she, her, hers) is a nature and animal lover whose pursuits include drawing, painting, gardening, singing and volunteering with those affected by domestic violence. She is the proud parent of an adult queer daughter. 

Ekta Kumar | CA

Mental Health Advisor

Dr. Ekta Kumar (she/her) is a licensed clinical psychologist at USC and the Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion for USC’s Dept. of Psychiatry. She is passionate about providing an affirming therapeutic space for LGBTQIA+ folks and families. 

Shaila Patankar | NJ

Records and Finance

Shaila (she, her, hers) emigrated to the U.S. from Bengaluru, India. She lives in New Jersey with her husband. Shaila is the mother of two. She was on the Board of Trustees of Guruvaayoorappan Temple, in Marboro, NJ for 8 years. She has been volunteering in various organizations over the years, taking on leadership roles in initiatives such as walk-a-thon, education, and social services. She enjoys traveling and reading in her spare time.

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