Connect Asia 2016
India Association of Minnesota’s (IAM) signature event Connect Asia 2016 offered an amazing opportunity for both leaders and community members to Connect, Communicate, Network and Exchange ideas with fellow professionals of Asian origin.
The event was held at the Coffman Memorial Union, University of Minnesota, in Minneapolis, MN. Through this event we also celebrated Asian-Pacific American Heritage Month. This year, our emphasis was on Women Empowerment as well as our effort to promote diversity within organizations, and help Asian employees achieve their full potential.
As in the past, Connect Asia aims to build a strong and cohesive community of professionals of Asian Origin, network & share best practices with Asian Employee Resource Groups as well as Engage with Minnesota State Government agencies such as CAPM for advancing the interests of Asians at the state level and at all these levels the event was a resounding success.
Here are a few highlights from the event:
- The program featured address by Minnesota Twins’ Miguel Ramos on the “Importance of Diversity and Inclusion” in workforce. “I don’t see the race, or language or color of the people when I am in a room full pf people, what I see are people – with different things to offer!”
- The keynote address was delivered by Sarena Lin, President, Cargill - Feed & Nutrition, on “Empowering Women and growing as leaders”. Ms. Lin talked about how it was imperative of leaders to empower others into positions of leadership – “lead by role-modelling, by values and by culture,” she said.
- A roundtable discussion on a variety of topics addressing concerns of the Asian community such as Growing within your organization, Promoting Inclusion at work place and Gender pay disparity were some of the tops discussed and moderated by leaders from within the community and beyond.
- IAM President Hasim Khorakiwala delivered his thank you note and implored community members to get involved and give back. Sree Kamojjala, the IAM vice-president delivered the closing few words by thanking the attendees and the keynote speakers.
- Dinner and some amazing performances by local artists capped off the evening.
A non-profit organization founded in 1973, IAM represents over 40,000 Indians in Minnesota. Through Connect Asia, IAM aims to promote diversity throughout organizations, and to empower employees of Asian descent to achieve their career aspirations.