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परिवर्तनका संवाहक ChangeMakers 2023 (USA) को घोषणा, १६ व्यक्तित्वहरू मध्ये १३ नारीहरूको ८१.२५% र ३ पुरूषको १८.७५ प्रतिशत प्रतिनिधित्व, ५ संस्थाहरू चुनिए

Updated: Jan 15




-प्रदीप परियार थापा, सम्पादक, नेपालिजम डट कम

Nepalism .com's ChangeMakers recognizes the trailblazers in our society. Nepalism .com's ChangeMakers is an annual listing of individuals and organizations who have greatly contributed to the society, inspire others and shine.

Updated: Exclusive: नेपालीजम डट कमले यो वर्ष सन् २०२३ को लागि ChangeMakers (परिवर्तनका संवाहक) 2023 (USA): People Who Made a Difference घोषणा गरेकोछ। समाजमा योगदान पुर्याएका या नेपालित्वलाई आफ्नो कर्म क्षेत्रबाट चिनाएका १६ व्यक्तित्वहरू मध्ये १३ नारीहरूको ८१.२५% र ३ पुरूषहरूको १८.७५ प्रतिशत प्रतिनिधित्व भएकोछ भने ५ वटा संस्थाहरू चुनिएकाछन्।


नेपालीजम डट कमले ChangeMakers (परिवर्तनका संवाहक) को तेश्रो संस्करण सन् २०२२ को लागि चुनिएका ८ व्यक्तित्वहरू मध्ये ५ नारीहरूको छनौटबाट ६२.५ प्रतिशत प्रतिनिधित्व रहेको थियो। दोश्रो संस्करण सन् २०२१ को ChangeMakers लिष्टमा कूल ४७ व्यक्तित्व र संघसंस्थाहरुलाई चुनिएको थियो जसमध्ये महिलाहरु ११ जना (२७.५ प्रतिशत रहेको थियो भने पहिलो संस्करण सन् २०२० को ChangeMakers लिष्टमा कूल ८५ व्यक्तित्व र संघसंस्थाहरु मध्ये महिलाहरु १५ जना (२२ प्रतिशत) रहेको थियो । हरेक वर्ष महिला व्यक्तित्वहरूको खोजी, पहिचान र उनीहरूले गरेको तरक्कीको बढोत्तरी देखिनु र कदर गरिनु भनेको समाजको सही प्रतिविम्व गरिनु पनि हो। नेपालिजम परिवार यो कुरामा गर्व गर्दछ।


यो वर्ष र विगतका वर्षहरूको परिवर्तनका संवाहकहरूबारे:

https://www.nepalism.com/changemakers मा सविस्तार पढ्न सक्नुहुनेछ ।


ChangeMakers (परिवर्तनका संवाहक) 2023 (USA): People Who Made a Difference:


1. Dr. George Beals Schaller (born 26 May 1933), an American mammalogist, biologist, conservationist and author, New York

2. Khagendra GC, Senior Attorney, New York

3. Judge Rina Gurung, NYC Civil Court (Housing), New York

4. Surya Shrestha Maharjan, Co-owner, Queens Diamond & Jewelry, New York

5. Suresh Sundas, Co-owner, Chef, Daru Restaurant, Washington DC

6. Yamuna (Bimala) Hamal Shrestha, Owner, Chef, Nepali Bhanchha Ghar Restaurant, New York

7. Padma Linkha Magar, Author, lyricist, social activist, Co-founder, Saral Nepali Language and Culture Center, New York

8. Shreeya Tuladhar, Youth Leader, Executive Director, Minority Empowerment Network, New York

9. Rama Singh, Senior Nepali media personality, First Television News Anchor in Nepali television history, Nepal Television, Kathmandu, Nepal/USA

10. Sita Pandey, Senior Journalist, Editor, Women in Sports; President/CEO, Shangrila-La Dialogue LLC, Maryland

11. Bitu KC, Senior Journalist, Nepal/USA

12. Sachchi Mainali, Journalist, Pennsylvania

13. Dolma Lama, Founder Chief Editor, TheWorldNepalnews.com Los Angeles

14. Machchhe Gurung, Journalist, New York

15. Sunita Sharma Koirala, Founder President/CEO, MNA TV (Mini Nepal in America), New York

16. Kalpana Ghimire, Journalist, New York

17. Mithila Center USA, New York

18. Saral Nepali Language and Culture Center, New York

19. Nepal Tea Collective, New York

20. Everest Federal Credit Union, New York

21. Minority Empowerment Network, New York


Photo: Amy Vedder

1. Dr. George Beals Schaller (born 26 May 1933), an American mammalogist, biologist, conservationist and author, New York


Dr. George Beals Schaller is as an eminent wildlife scientist, mammalogist, conservationist, and author of German origin who later became an American citizen. His notable achievements include being one of only two Westerners known to have encountered a snow leopard in Nepal between 1950 and 1978. Dr. Schaller's pioneering efforts in conservation have left an indelible mark, leading to the protection of expansive areas in the Amazon, Brazil, the Hindu Kush in Pakistan, and Southeast Asian forests.


His impactful work has contributed to the establishment of over 20 parks or preserves worldwide have been established, including Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR), the Shey-Phoksundo National Park in Nepal, and the Changtang Nature Reserve in Tibet, one of the world's most significant wildlife refuges.


Dr. Schaller's research has taken him to the Himalayas, where he studied endangered species such as the bharal, snow leopard, and wild yak. Merging scientific inquiry with conservation, he played a pivotal role in creating Protected Areas in countries like Pakistan, Brazil, Mongolia, and China. Notably, he continues to collaborate with governments in the development of a substantial peace park in the Pamirs, aiming to safeguard the endangered Marco Polo sheep.



Throughout his career, from his Alaskan field explorations in 1952 to his roles as senior conservationist at the Wildlife Conservation Society and Vice-President of Panthera, Dr. Schaller has led and inspired conservation initiatives globally. His early experiences living with mountain gorillas in Central Africa and groundbreaking work on African lions in the Serengeti revolutionized wildlife protection programs. His extensive fieldwork, notably in the Kanha Tiger Reserve, culminated in the first-ever scientific study on wild tigers, documented in his enduring book "The Deer and the Tiger."


A prolific writer, Dr. Schaller has authored 16 published books and numerous papers, showcasing his captivating fieldwork. In 1980, he, alongside his wife Kay, collaborated with Chinese colleagues on a comprehensive study of giant pandas, further solidifying his legacy as a foremost figure in wildlife science and conservation.



2. Khagendra GC, Senior Attorney, New York


Senior Nepali American Attorney Mr. Khagendra Gharti-Chhetry has remarkable 30-year commitment to legal excellence and community service. As the founder of Chhetry & Associates, P.C., a distinguished full-service law firm, he has consistently delivered first-class representation since 1987.


Mr. Gharti-Chhetry's exceptional legal acumen has garnered recognition, with a prestigious inclusion in Super Lawyers from 2014 to 2023—an accolade bestowed upon a select few accomplished attorneys. A graduate of Tribhuvan University Law Campus, Nepal, and Columbia University Law School, LL.M. 1986, he furthered his commitment to justice by founding Chhetry & Associates, P.C.


An esteemed member of the New York State Bar Association and the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Attorney Mr. Gharti-Chhetry was admitted to the New York bar in 1987 and the U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York in the same year. His accomplishments reached new heights in 1996 when he gained admission to the U.S. Supreme Court.


Beyond his legal prowess, Senior Attorney Mr. Khagendra Gharti-Chhetry has played a pivotal role in various Nepali diaspora organizations, including the Non-Resident Nepali Association National Coordination Council of USA. His election as the vice president of the Socialist International, a global umbrella organization of major democratic parties of 126 countries is a testament to his leadership and dedication to fostering international connections.



3. Judge Rina Gurung, NYC Civil Court (Housing), New York


Honorable Rina Gurung has made history as the first lawyer of Nepali American heritage appointed as a Judge of the Housing Part of the Civil Court of the City of New York. Judge Gurung is also the first Judge of Nepali America heritage appointed or elected in the State of New York. Her remarkable achievement stands as a testament to her unwavering dedication, hard work, and perseverance.

 

This milestone extends beyond Judge Gurung’s personal success; it resonates as a source of pride for the entire Nepali community. By breaking barriers, she has paved the way for aspiring Nepali American lawyers, exemplifying the positive impact one can make in the legal profession.

 

Before her judicial appointment, Judge Gurung served as a court attorney to another Judge in Housing Part of the Civil Court of the City of New York.  Prior to her appointment as a court attorney, she served as a staff attorney at Staten Island Legal Services, a crucial arm of Legal Services NYC (LSNYC), offering free legal assistance to low-income individuals across the five boroughs of New York City. Her focus on protecting tenants’ rights, preventing homelessness, and addressing displacement showcased her commitment to public interest law.

 

Judge Gurung’s dedication to public service extends throughout her career. As an Equal Justice Works VISTA legal fellow at the Community Development Project of the Urban Justice Center, she concentrated on preserving project-based Section 8 properties across New York City.

 

Actively engaged in various bar associations, Judge Gurung serves as a co-chair of the Government Service and Public Interest Committee of the Asian American Bar Association of New York (AABANY). Judge Gurung is also a member of the Board of Directors of Adhikaar, a women-led community and workers’ center. Furthermore, Judge Gurung is one of the commissioners of the Franklin H. Williams Judicial Commission which educates and advises decision makers in the New York Court System on issues affecting both employees and litigants of color, and implements recommendations developed to address said issues. Her commitment to serving communities of color and marginalized populations reflects her ongoing dedication to public interest law.

 

Judge Gurung earned her Juris Doctor from the New England School of Law in 2013 and her Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from Queens College of the City University of New York in 2009. Her academic achievements underscore the foundation of her legal expertise and commitment to public service.



4. Surya Shrestha Maharjan, Co-owner, Queens Diamond & Jewelry, New York


Ms. Surya Shrestha Maharjan is a resilient Nepali American business entrepreneur who has forged her path from teaching in Kathmandu to becoming a prominent figure in the jewelry industry in the United States.


Born and raised in the Kathmandu Valley, Ms. Shrestha began her career as a teacher at Gyan Mandir Higher Secondary School before her life took a turn when she got married at the age of 20.


Embracing her husband's family business in the jewelry industry, Ms. Shrestha navigated the complexities of manufacturing and quality control in Mumbai. Despite the challenges of adapting to a new life and profession, she learned extensively from her experiences at CG International Manufacture (now Susie International). This journey between Mumbai and Nepal laid the foundation for their joint family business, BR Gems.


In 2005, Surya and her husband Samir Maharjan ventured into the USA to expand their family business. The initial years in America were challenging for them as immigrants, but they persevered.


In 2006, Ms. Shrestha joined RB Enterprise, a tiny booth in the wholesale market on 47th Street in the NYC Jewelry District that was established by her husband a year prior. Their company grew steadily through persistence and hard effort; in 2007 they built their first retail location in Alaska, Juneau placing their focus on the tourist market where people visited from all over the world and in 2008, they opened Queens Diamond and Jewelry, in a popular retail location in Jackson Heights, Queens, New York prioritizing to serve the Asian Community. They also established Classic Diamond Jewelry in Pulchowk, Nepal the very same year. They were able to network and change their business for the benefit of the Nepali community with this accomplishment.


Their business gained the reach of diverse communities who were looking forward to investing in beautiful, intricate hand-crafted jewelry. Throughout this journey as a business entrepreneur, she was able to create strong relationships and build a home in the heart of Queens, NY. In 2012 while their business was flourishing, their family was completed when they welcomed their son.


They opened two more retail locations for Classic Diamond and Jewelry in Maryland and California between 2012 and 2016 in order to emphasize their Nepali brand in the United States.


As a woman in the jewelry industry, Ms. Shrestha's entrepreneurial journey taught her tenacity and willpower. Alongside building a successful business, she actively engaged in community service, participating in organizations like Newah Guthi and the World Newah Organization. Her dedication led her to serve as Deputy Speaker of the House at the Federation of the Indigenous Peoples of Nepal in America in 2020.


Beyond business success, Ms. Shrestha received honors from various organizations for her contributions to women's empowerment and philanthropy.


Grateful for the lessons learned and achievements, she continues to empower women through her powerful voice in the Nepali American community. Today, Ms. Surya Shrestha Maharjan stands as a testament to the resilience and determination of an immigrant woman creating a thriving life in the United States.



5. Suresh Sundas, Co-owner, Chef, Daru Restaurant, Washington DC


Mr. Suresh Sundas, the Co-owner and Nepali American Chef of the renowned restaurant Daru in Washington DC, has swiftly ascended the culinary ranks since establishing the famed restaurant in 2021. Within a mere year of its inception, Daru earned accolades such as being listed among The New York Times' Top 50 Restaurants in 2022 and securing a spot in Bon Appétit's Best 50 New Restaurants in America in the same year. Notably, the restaurant clinched the prestigious Michelin Bib Gourmand Star Restaurant award in both 2022 and 2023, as recognized by the Michelin Guide.


Hailing from the Morang district in Eastern Nepal, Chef Sundas arrived in the USA in 2007 and embarked on the culinary journey that led to the creation of Daru. Alongside his American, Indian, and Korean partners, he crafted a menu that blends Northern and Southern Indian cooking styles with modern fusion, featuring innovative dishes like za’atar olive naan, chicken tikka tacos, chimichurri chutneys, and grilled chicken reshmi kebabs with a touch of blue cheese.



Before the inception of Daru, Mr. Sundas honed his culinary expertise during a seven-year stint at Rasika, one of DC Metro's premier Indian restaurants. His dedication to the craft and experience in restaurant management laid the foundation for Daru's success.


Chef Sundas stands as an inspiration for aspiring culinary enthusiasts, captivating foodies globally, Capitol Hill politicians, celebrities, and food critics alike. His outstanding aptitude and inventive approach to blending flavors continue to elevate Daru to new heights in the gastronomic scene, as evidenced by numerous prestigious awards and recognitions.



6. Yamuna (Bimala) Hamal Shrestha, Owner, Chef, Nepali Bhanchha Ghar Restaurant, New York


Ms. Yamuna (Bimala) Hamal Shrestha is not only a trailblazing businesswoman but also the owner and Nepali American Chef behind the thriving Nepali restaurant, Nepali Bhanchha Ghar, nestled in the vibrant neighborhood of Jackson Heights, Queens, New York. Establishing this culinary gem in 2015, she has carved a niche with her mouthwatering Momo flavors, securing an impressive five consecutive wins in the Momo Crawl NYC competition from 2017 to 2022.



Ms. Hamal's culinary prowess extends beyond accolades, as her savory Nepali homemade-style food earned the attention of The New York Times' food critics, leading to three features on her restaurant.

Having arrived in the USA in 2008, her dedication to culinary excellence is paralleled by her commitment to the well-being of the Nepali American community. She currently serves as the President of Darshan Thakuri Samaj America and has previously held the position of Ex-President at Shyanja Samaj America, both organizations actively involved in social causes. Ms. Hamal Shrestha's impactful presence in both the culinary and community spheres reflects her multifaceted contributions to the vibrant fabric of Nepali American culture in New York.



7. Padma Linkha Magar, Author, lyricist, social activist, Co-founder, Saral Nepali Language and Culture Center, New York


Ms. Padma Linkha Magar is a distinguished Nepali American lyricist, author, and social activist. As the Co-founder and current President of Saral Nepali Language and Culture Center in New York City, she passionately imparts Nepali language and culture to the younger generation. Additionally, Ms. Linkha Magar serves as the USA Coordinator for Jhumlawang Village Foundation and plays pivotal roles in various educational initiatives in Nepal.


Her musical prowess shines through the production of five albums, including notable works like NAZAR (2013); NAZAR-2 (2015); UJJYALOKO KHOJEE (A Collection of Gazals) 2015; INDRENI (2015), and NAZAR-3 (2023).


Ms. Linkha Magar has garnered acclaim with prestigious awards, such as the Best Female Lyricist of the Year 2014 by 5th Bindabasini Music Award; Best Album of the Year (NAZAR-2) 2016 by 7th Bindabasini Music Award; Best Lyricist (Gold Medal & Certificate) in Nationwide Open Modern Music Competition of Radio Nepal 2018; Best Female Lyricist of the Year 2018 by 9th Bindabasini Music Award and Best Female Lyricist of the Year 2019 by 10th Bindabasini Music Award, recognizing her outstanding contributions to the Nepali music scene.


Beyond her musical achievements, Ms. Linkha Magar's remarkable social contributions have been recognized with numerous awards and honors such as Award of Recognition by Nepali Women of New York/New Jersey 2018; Nepalese American Hero 2018 by United Sherpa Association USA; Honored as “Exemplary Teacher” by International Nepali Literary Society in 2023; Citation of Honor from Office of the District Attorney of Queens in 2023, and Citation of Honor from Office of the President of the Borough of Queens in 2023., highlighting her dedication to community service and education.



8. Shreeya Tuladhar, Youth Leader, Executive Director, Minority Empowerment Network, New York


Ms. Shreeya Tuladhar is the dynamic Executive Director of the New York City-based prominent Nepali non-profit organization, Minority Empowerment Network. As the founder and youth leader of 'Newah Youth,' a dedicated indigenous Nepali community organization, she has been a driving force in fostering community engagement.


Ms. Tuladhar's impactful contributions reached new heights when she played a central role in orchestrating the first-ever Nepali-American flag raising ceremony in New York City on Nepali Constitution Day, September 20, 2023. Coordinating with the NYC Mayor’s Office, The Bowling Green Association, and over 50 Nepali organizations, she ensured a seamless collaboration for this historic event.



A 1.5 generation trilingual Nepali-American who relocated to NYC at the age of 10, Ms. Tuladhar is deeply committed to bridging the cultural divide between her heritage and her adopted home.


Ms. Tuladhar’s diverse efforts include organizing mental health, underage gambling prevention, and ESL capacity building workshops. She also advocates for local Nepali artists, amplifies the concerns of small businesses, and champions the voices of Nepali immigrants through meetings with city and state officials.


Ms. Tuladhar's dedication extends to volunteer work, where she consistently provides support to people experiencing homelessness in Manhattan every Wednesday evening. Currently, spearheading various community projects for 2024, she stands as a steadfast advocate for the Nepali community in NYC, embodying a spirit of service and cultural unity.


Nepali Women in Media



9. Rama Singh, Senior Nepali media personality, First Television News Anchor in Nepali television history, Nepal Television, Kathmandu, Nepal/USA


Ms. Rama Singh is a distinguished Nepali personality with a multifaceted journey marked by significant achievements and recognitions. Ms. Singh first arrived in the USA in 2009 and returned to Nepal in 2021. As the trailblazer in Nepali television, she holds the distinction of being the first television news anchor in the history of Nepali television.


Her notable achievements include being the founding captain of Nepal's National Women Soccer Team and receiving prestigious accolades such as the "Prabal Gorkhadakshin Bahu 4th" Medal from HM the King of Nepal in 2006.


Recognized as one of Nepal's Top 50 Personalities in 2004 and one of the 10 Most Influential Women in 2004 and 50 Most Influential Women in 2005 by The Boss Magazine, Ms. Singh has left an indelible mark.


With an extensive career at Nepal Television from 1986 to 2010, including the role of Chief News Editor, Ms. Rama Singh has been a trailblazer in broadcasting. Her educational background includes a Master's in Arts from Tribhuvan University, Nepal, in 1991.


Engaging in international media conferences and representing Nepal on state visits, Ms. Rama Singh showcased her leadership skills.


She has been an Executive Member of the National Sports Council and served in key roles within professional societies, including being the President of the NTV Branch of the Federation of Nepalese Journalists in 2005 and the Executive Vice President of the All Nepal Football Association in 2001. Additionally, her advisory role for Nari Shakti reflects her commitment to women's empowerment in Nepal.



10. Sita Pandey, Senior Journalist, Editor, Women in Sports; President/CEO, Shangrila-La Dialogue LLC, Maryland


Ms. Sita Pandey is a distinguished journalist, literary figure and President/CEO of Shngrila-La Dialogue LLC, specializing in global communication, publication, and English-Nepali translation and interpretation. With a prolific career as an author, her notable publications include "Silent Voices," shedding light on women's oppression, and "Fever," a collection of short stories in English.


Ms. Pandey is a columnist for Vishwa Parikrama and E-Nepalese, contributing articles and comments to prominent publications like Kantipur daily, Himalaya Times, Ghatana ra Bichar, Nawaras, Nispaksh, and more. Her literary contributions extend to Nepali literature with works like "Antardwanda," "Avatar Bighatan," and various collections of short stories and poetry.


Ms. Pandey’s affiliations include being a Life Member of INNJA (International Network for Nepali Journalists) and a Member of SAJA (South Asian Journalists Association) and FPA (Foreign Press Association). As an Advisor and Senior Vice President of Jhapali Samaj, USA, and Advisor to the Board of Trustee for International Nepali Literary Society and ANA (Association of Nepalis in America), Ms. Pandey plays pivotal roles in various community and professional organizations.


Her editorial expertise is showcased through roles as Editor of "Women in Sports" and "Pravesh." Notably, she served as the Chair of the Awards Committee for the Board of Trustee at the International Nepali Literary Society and convened the 3rd International Nepali Literary Convention in Washington DC in 2013.


Ms. Sita Pandey's diverse portfolio as a columnist, author, editor, and literary advocate reflects her profound commitment to literature, journalism, and community service.



11. Bitu KC, Senior Journalist, Nepal/USA


Ms. Bitu KC is an accomplished individual whose journey is marked by a rich educational background, notable work experiences, and a profound commitment to community service, earning her recognition and honors in various spheres.


Possessing a Master's in Political Science from Tribhuwan University, Nepal, and a Bachelor's in Law from the same institution, Ms. KC exemplifies academic excellence and a commitment to intellectual pursuits.


Ms. KC has made significant contributions to the field of journalism and education. She serves as a Contributor and Columnist for Himalayakhabar, providing insights and perspectives on various subjects. Additionally, she held the position of Assistant Professor of Political Science at Manohar Multiple College in Kathmandu, Nepal, where she imparted her knowledge and guidance to the next generation.


Ms. Bitu KC's transcontinental journey is marked by her arrival in the United States in 2004 and her return to Nepal permanently in 2023, culminating nearly two decades of dedicated community service and entrepreneurship.


During her time in the United States, Ms. KC actively contributed to the well-being of the Nepali community. Serving as the Program Coordinator for Sharsta Sambad and Shrasta Sanjh in America, she played a pivotal role in organizing and coordinating programs that aimed to foster cultural engagement and community cohesion.


Her commitment extended to organizational roles, where she served as a Member of the Nepalese Association of Houston and the Nepal America Journalist Association. In these capacities, Ms. KC actively participated in initiatives and activities that addressed the needs and concerns of the Nepali diaspora in the United States.


Furthermore, she lent her expertise as an Advisor to the International Literary Society in Houston, emphasizing her dedication to the promotion of literary and cultural pursuits within the community.


Ms. Bitu KC's involvement in these varied roles underscores her unwavering commitment to community service and her endeavor to make a positive impact on the lives of those within the Nepali diaspora during her significant time in the United States.


Ms. KC has been honored for her outstanding contributions including Honor by Sharsta Sanjh, America, 2022; Honor by the Nepalese Association of Houston on August 20th, 2022; Recognition by the Nepal America Journalists Association in 2023; Honor by HimalayaKhabar online media in August 2023 and honor by Gazal Utsaw, America, in November 2021.


As an accomplished author, Ms. Bitu KC has shared her creative expressions with the world through the following publications: "Maya ko Maat," a collection of short poems and "Adha Man," a Geeti Album.


Ms. Bitu KC's diverse portfolio and impactful contributions reflect her commitment to education, journalism, community service, and the arts, making her a respected figure in various circles.



12. Sachchi Mainali, Journalist, Pennsylvania


Ms. Sachchi Mainali stands as a distinguished Nepali American journalist, writer, and media activist, embodying a fervent dedication to catalyzing societal change. Her formidable advocacy spans pivotal issues such as good governance, anti-corruption, and the cessation of impunity, while simultaneously championing child rights, women's rights, and human rights throughout her illustrious three-decade career. Ms. Mainali has emerged as a trailblazing figure in the realm of Nepali American journalism, demonstrating an unwavering commitment to being a powerful voice for the voiceless over the last fifteen years in the United States.


From her early days as a child artist and one of the hosts of the Hatemalo Radio program on Radio Nepal between 1992-2002 to her role as the producer and presenter of "Satya Ke Ho?" (What the Truth Is?) on H.B.C 94 FM, an investigative program on debatable social issues, between 2001-2003, she has left an indelible mark.


Ms. Mainali swiftly ascended to spearhead the production and hosting of the acclaimed weekly radio show, Asal Sashan (Good Governance), between 2002 and 2005. This program achieved unprecedented success, boasting Good Governance District Coordination Committee in 65 districts and several hundred listening fan clubs with over 63,000 active members across all 75 districts of Nepal. Its core objectives were to elevate good governance into a public discourse, foster awareness, enhance accessibility to the nation's administration, and empower citizens with knowledge about their rights and responsibilities.


Presently, as the Publisher and Editor of Sachchi Ko Sath Ma (With Sachchi), she champions the voices of the voiceless through her media company. Simultaneously, in her role as Resident Editor at eNepalese, a Washington DC-based Nepali American media outlet, she continues to shape narratives that resonate globally.


In 2017, Ms. Sachchi Mainali's exceptional contributions earned her the title of the first Nepali Women of the Year in America, bestowed by Washington DC-based Three E Entertainment. This accolade recognizes her profound social impact through journalism, solidifying her status as a beacon of inspiration in the realm of media and social change.


Ms. Sachchi Mainali’s journey remains an inspirational narrative, exemplifying the potent role of media in shaping a more just and informed society.



13. Dolma Lama, Founder Chief Editor, www.TheWorldNepalnews.com, Los Angeles


Ms. Dolma Lama is the founder chief editor of the Los Angeles-based Nepali American media outlet, www.TheWorldNepalnews.com


Embarking on her journalism journey, Ms. Lama initiated her career at Jijibika magazine, a collaboration with UNICEF Nepal and ECARDS-Dolakha in 2009. Her early contributions to journalism also extended to hosting the Radio Clinic at Sailung 104 MHz, showcasing her dedication to communication and community engagement.


Between 2020 and 2021, Ms. Lama served as a Reporter for the National News Agency, representing California and contributing to news coverage on a national scale.


Currently pursuing her Ph.D. at the American University of Sovereign Nations (AUSN) in Arizona, Ms. Dolma Lama continues to blend her academic pursuits with her passion for journalism, fostering a unique intersection of knowledge and media expertise. Her leadership in the Nepali American media landscape reflects her commitment to informing and connecting the community.



14. Machchhe Gurung, Journalist, New York


Ms. Machchhe Devi Gurung, a seasoned journalist with a rich career history in various facets of media and community empowerment.


Ms. Gurung served as Vice President of Nepal America Journalists’ Association (NEAJA) and worked as the Guest Editor at Everest Times Nepali Newspaper in New York, her focus on covering diaspora stories, particularly those concerning women, children, and Indigenous communities, highlights her dedication to amplifying marginalized voices and empowering women economically and politically.


Her role as a Reporter at Sancharika Samuha in Nepal from January 2014 to October 2014 involved in-depth investigation and analysis of newsworthy events, emphasizing women's issues for the Samakon program. As a Producer/Reporter at Radio Sagarmatha FM 102.4 MHz in Kathmandu, Nepal, from December 2009 to June 2014, she showcased her commitment to justice and marginalized voices through programs like 'Bidhiko Shasan' and 'Saha - Astitwa.'


With academic qualifications including a Bachelor's Degree in Law and a Master's in Sociology & Anthropology, Ms. Gurung's dedication to academia aligns with her practical efforts. Her extensive career also includes a role as Program Coordinator for the Women Peace Program at Bikalpa Gyan Tatha Bikas Kendra in Kathmandu, Nepal, from March 2007 to June 2009.


Notably, Ms. Gurung has received recognition for her impactful contributions. She was honored for her work in empowering women and combating domestic violence through radio by the British Embassy to Nepal and Women Rehabilitation Centre (WOREC) Nepal in 2013. The New York City Council acknowledged her journalistic contributions to the Nepali community in America on the occasion of Everest Times Newspapers' 10th Anniversary in 2018. Adding to her achievements, Ms. Gurung served as a judge at the National Indigenous Film Festival Award 2018 in New York, focusing on women and documentaries.


Ms. Gurung’s journey exemplifies a relentless commitment to journalism, community empowerment, and academic excellence.



15. Sunita Sharma Koirala, Founder President/CEO, MNA TV (Mini Nepal in America), New York


Ms. Sunita Sharma Koirala, an accomplished individual wearing multiple hats as the Founder President/CEO of MNA TV (Mini Nepal in America online television) in New York.


Beyond her role in media, she is a seasoned journalist and video producer for Nepal Television (NTV), with an additional responsibility as a News Correspondent based in New York for Avenues TV, Kathmandu-based news tv channel.



In the realm of IT, Ms. Koirala has showcased her proficiency in various roles, serving as a Senior Software Engineer at CBS News, Paramount Plus since March 2022. Her IT journey also includes roles such as Mobile Engineer at Medtronic from January 2021 to March 2022, Software Engineer at Altice USA from December 2018 to December 2020, Senior Software Engineer (SDET) at AT&T/Accenture from May 2018 to November 2018, and Senior Software Engineer at HSBC Commercial Banking from July 2015 to April 2018.


This diverse blend of media leadership and IT expertise underscores Ms. Koirala's versatility and capability in navigating both industries. Her current IT role and her pioneering efforts at MNA TV position her as a dynamic force in the intersection of media and technology, contributing significantly to the Nepali community in America.



16. Kalpana Ghimire, Journalist, New York


Ms. Kalpna Ghimire brings a wealth of journalistic experience, having worked as a sub-editor at Kantipur and Annapurna national daily newspapers in Nepal. With a decade-long stint in journalism in her home country, Ms. Ghimire has been a dedicated reporter, particularly focusing on issues related to women, children, and senior citizens.


Her noteworthy contributions to reporting on senior citizens' well-being and government cash stipend allowances earned her recognition and a monetary award of Rupees 50,000 from Geriatric Center Nepal in 2010. The then Vice President of Nepal, Honorable Parmanand Jha, presented her with this honor, highlighting the impact of her reporting on the lives of senior citizens.


Ms. Ghimire's commitment to addressing women's issues also garnered attention, leading to an honor by then UK Ambassador John Tucknott for her continuous reporting on women's concerns in Kantipur daily in 2012.


In her role as Treasurer and New York State Coordinator for the Nepal America Journalists' Association (NEAJA), Ms. Ghimire showcased her leadership and commitment to fostering connections within the Nepali American journalist community.


While currently serving as a Patient Care Associate at Elmhurst Hospital in Queens, New York, Ms. Kalpna Ghimire remains actively engaged in journalism. She contributes to Vishwa Sandesh newspaper in New York, maintaining her dedication to journalism and community service in the United States.



17. Mithila Center USA, New York


Mithila Center USA, recognized as the Mithila Art and Cultural Center is New York City-based nonprofit organization founded by the esteemed Nepali American Social Entrepreneur, Mr. Amit Pratap Shah. With an unwavering commitment, the Center celebrates, preserves, and promotes the rich values and principles of Mithila culture and civilizations.


Beyond geographical boundaries, their mission spans the exploration and sharing of the profound history, festivals, literature, arts, and scientific contributions of Mithila globally.


At the heart of Mithila Center USA's vision lies a dedication to fostering values of harmony, friendship, and cooperation. The organization advocates for and promotes religious and cultural tolerance on various levels, from local communities to the international stage. The center's holistic approach extends beyond cultural preservation to humanitarian endeavors, providing crucial assistance and support to those affected by natural disasters and emergencies.


Annually, Mithila Center USA organizes diverse programs contributing to their multifaceted mission. The Mithila Festival USA, aligning with the Jude Shital Festival and Mithila New Year, stands as a vibrant celebration uniting communities. The Art for SDGs: the Mithila Heritage Exhibition serves as a flagship program, showcasing the fusion of Mithila art with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.


In addition to cultural programs, the Center engages in community welfare through initiatives like the annual historical Vivah Panchami Festival America. This vibrant celebration unites the Mithila community through traditional ceremonies, performances, and cultural displays, fostering a strong sense of community and preserving cultural traditions.


Mithila Center USA's commitment extends to knowledge dissemination through the publication of two Mithila cultural books, contributing to the preservation and sharing of Mithila's cultural wealth. In essence, their journey is defined by a profound dedication to cultural celebration, preservation, and community welfare, both locally and globally.



18. Saral Nepali Language and Culture Center, New York


Saral Nepali Language and Culture Center, based in New York City, began with a humble vision to educate children from the Nepali diaspora and individuals interested in learning the Nepali language and culture. Unofficially initiated in a Karate Studio in Jackson Heights, Queens, New York on September 17, 2016, with just nine students, the center officially registered in 2018. Currently, it conducts ten classes with around 300 students virtually, facilitated by dedicated volunteer teachers and board members.


From its modest beginning, the center has made remarkable progress, growing from nine students to a thriving virtual community of 300 attendees. The students are not only from various parts of the USA, including New York, New Jersey, Maryland, North Carolina, California, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Connecticut, Vermont, Massachusetts, and Texas but also from France and the UK.


Founded in 2016 by Ms. Saraswati Rai and Ms. Padma Linkha Magar, Saral Nepali Language and Culture Center is steered by a committed board for the years 2022-2024. The leadership includes Chairperson Padma Linkha Magar, Vice-Chairperson Yashoda Rai, Secretary Rina Rai, Joint Secretary Purnima M Lama, Treasurer Samu Rai, Joint Treasurer Gagan Raj Rai, and Members Januka Osti, Hajuri Kandel, and Rakesh Pradhan.


The center stands out in its mission, teaching the next generation of Nepali diaspora children their language and culture through educational programs and various engaging activities. These include cultural programs, chatpate mela, annual functions, Deusi-Bhailo, Momo Crawl, celebrating Nepali festivals, and an annual picnic, contributing significantly to the community's cultural enrichment and education.



19. Nepal Tea Collective, New York


Nepal Tea Collective, an acclaimed public benefit corporation, is dedicated to distributing the freshest USDA organic certified teas, sourced and packed at the origin in Nepal's eastern hills, to a global market. Founded with the noble vision of uplifting one million farmers from poverty, the Collective currently harvests and sells nearly 25 tons of tea annually, with plans to double production in the coming years. Recognized for its excellence, the Collective has garnered over a dozen global tea awards, including the prestigious GlobalTea Championship 2019 bronze medal, AVPA (The Agency for the Valorization of Agricultural Products) France 4 awards 2021, and The LEAFIES International Tea Award UK 2023.



Established in 2015 by Nishchal Banskota, a young graduate and heir to Nepal's first Certified Organic Tea Garden, Kanchanjangha Tea Estate, the Collective achieved a milestone by completing the largest crowdfunding campaign in the organic tea industry, supported by nearly 500 backers. The roots of this initiative trace back to 1984 when Mr. Deepak Prakash Banskota, Nishchal's father, pioneered the establishment of Nepal's first Certified Organic Tea Garden.


Beyond producing quality teas, Nepal Tea Collective is on a mission to bridge the gap between tea producers and consumers. By eliminating unnecessary middlemen, fostering transparency, and leveraging technology for conscious community building, the Collective strives to create a positive impact in the tea industry. Notably, its special chai blend, Nepali Breakfast, has earned a spot among the top 10 teas, as voted by consumers in a survey with over 70,000 reviews.



20. Everest Federal Credit Union, New York


Everest Federal Credit Union (EFCU), headquartered in New York City, stands as a groundbreaking financial institution, being the first-ever autonomous entity formed by the Nepali American community outside of Nepal. Its inception is a realization of a dream to establish a financial institution tailored to the needs of the Nepali community in the USA, providing vital financial support to its members.


The mission of EFCU is to strengthen the economic capabilities of Non-Resident Nepali individuals living in the USA. Guided by the principle of "We the Nepali, By the Nepali, and For the Nepali," the credit union embodies a commitment to serve its community.


Everest Federal Credit Union draws strength from the familiarity of its potential members, the Nepali communities in the USA, who have experience with cooperative banking in Nepal. The credit union aims to educate potential members about the similarities between Nepali cooperative banking and credit unions in the USA, emphasizing the extensive banking services that EFCU can provide. Leveraging this familiarity, EFCU seeks to convince individuals who have dealt with cooperative banking in Nepal of the benefits they can gain from being part of the credit union. In essence, Everest Federal Credit Union is positioned to be a financial cornerstone for the Nepali community in the USA, contributing to their economic well-being and fostering financial empowerment.



21. Minority Empowerment Network, New York


Minority Empowerment Network is a leading Nepali non-profit organization based in New York City, dedicated to advocating for the mental health and economic empowerment of minority communities.


Notably, they played a pivotal role in organizing the first-ever hoisting of Nepal’s flag in NYC on Nepali Constitution Day, September 20, 2023. This historic event, held in Bowling Green Park, Lower Manhattan, drew around 500 attendees, making it the largest flag-raising gathering to date.



Comprising distinguished Nepali community leaders, the team at Minority Empowerment Network serves as South Asian advisors for state officials and holds esteemed positions on the Queens Community Board. Beyond ceremonial achievements, their impactful initiatives include distributing holiday cheer through toy drives, providing free back-to-school backpacks, and ensuring community safety by distributing N95 masks during challenging times.


The organization actively collaborates with other non-profits and city agencies, advocating for small business owners, meeting with local precincts and council members, and bringing in resources to foster economic empowerment in minority communities. Essential workshops on mental health, community capacity building ESL, and underage gambling prevention showcase their commitment to uplifting the Nepali and other minority communities.


Minority Empowerment Network aspires to be the community's resource center and a guiding hand, striving to create a positive impact on the well-being and economic prosperity of minority groups in New York City.












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