See the amazing people SAAN has hosted over the years in various conferences.
LA-based writer and poet, her work has been featured by noteworthy luminaries such as Anoushka Shankar, who invited Pavana to write a song for her Grammy-nominated album, Land of Gold.
Founding President of ADWAN.ORG (Association of Dalit Women Advancement of Nepal), a prolific social entrepreneur, award winning scholar, and one of the most admired personalities in Nepali community abroad.
Stand-up comedian and writer originally from Cleveland, Ohio. Torgalkar has contributed to MAD Magazine and written essays on comedy, depression, and social issues related to the South Asian community
Ahmed Ali Akbar
Chicago-based Muslim-Iranian abolitionist, photographer, author, community organizer, and radical fashion blogger. In 2013 she started JooJoo Azad, a radical, anti-capitalist fashion blog that has been hailed from the Malala Foundation Blog to Teen Vogue.
Program Manager for Energy & Sustainability Strategy at Port Houston. Led a team of interdisciplinary graduate students from eight schools at the University of Michigan to identify carbon benefits of the Mission Kakatiya program.
Founder of global human rights organization, Breakthrough, and led the group as its President & CEO for 17 years. Mallika is a leading innovator in storytelling and culture change and has produced multimedia experiences that have reached millions of people to shift hearts and minds.
Writer and host of the critically-acclaimed BuzzFeed News podcast See Something Say Something, a show about the many ways to be an American Muslim. He writes about American Muslim culture, nostalgia, the immigrant experience, video games and more
Rap and hip-hop artist, with his music most notable for the balance between his Bengali roots and Queens lifestyle.
Associate Director of White House Office of Public Engagement
Award winning poet, editor, and educator from Detroit who has collaborated with a variety of artists and serves as a contributing editor for The Offing.
A celebrated host, writer, and producer who has gained a loyal following for his entertaining interview style with the biggest names in Hollywood and Bollywood.
Program Manager at the Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women. She specializes in Legal Justice Systems Advocacy, where leads MCBW's statewide criminal and legal justice system projects.
Gastroenterologist and President of VeAhavta, a non-profit organization that runs Grace Girls’ Home, an orphanage for girls and elder care facility in Trincomalee, Sri Lanka.
An award winning storyteller in New York City and one of the most engaging social media personalities in the Muslim community today.
Award-winning investigative journalist (PBS, Al Jazeera, Buzzfeed) working to shed light on systematic injustice and hold the powerful to account.
Babbu the Painter
Indo-Canadian based visual artist whose artwork is a journey of self-discovery through painting, photography, sculpture and animation.
Change manager for Global Venture and Fellowship who supports the search, selection and fellowship engagement processes of Ashoka Fellows from all over the world.
Award-winning actress, producer, MC, TV Host, philanthropist, and first South Asian female to have a solo play, They Call Me Q.
Activist, cultural organizer, and DJ who brings together diverse interests in electronic and bass music, immigration activism, and cultural organizing.
Sikh American who is known both by his professions as a political cartoonist and as "The Sikh Captain America."
Cultural worker who creates in the intersections of theater, organizing and healing.
Activist working on healthcare policy issues that affect people from APIA, South Asian, and other immigrant communities in Michigan.
Award-winning writer, performer, and filmmaker based in Brooklyn, New York.
Taz & Zahra
CEO of Naya Jeevan, Pakistan-based company dedicated to empowering marginalized communities by giving them access to health care, education and financial inclusion.
Former Civil Rights Advocate at South Asian Network and President of Satrang; Currently works with Fulbright Program at the U.S. State Department
Education Policy Initiative at the UM Ford School of Public Policy; Board President of Asian Pacific Islander American Vote Michigan; Commissioner on Michigan Asian Pacific American Affairs Commission
Youth activist, author, philanthropist, and public speaker; Founder of PovSolve
Indian-American actor, comedian, writer, producer, Mr. India Global and a former model
Brooklyn-based, Queens-raised stand-up comedian
Pediatric specialist, physician on medical evacuation flights; freelance journalist
Sri Lankan Tamil performing artist and activist
Afghan American filmmaker; Kabul (2000) and Zulaikha (2002)
Sri Lankan poet, singer, and lawyer
Multimedia journalist, producer and reporter for NPR's flagship news magazine, All Things Considered.
Leading marketer, tinkerer, dreamer, and problem solver; Vice President of Marketing of United Way for Southeastern Michigan
Author of Corona, cited among this year’s Best Debut Fiction by Poets & Writers.
Founder and president of South Asian American Voices for Impact
Pakistani American laywer and author; chair of the Planning and Priorities Committee for Amnesty International USA; columnist for DAWN; founder of the Muslim Women's Legal Defense Fund for the Muslim Alliance of Indiana/The Julian Center Shelter.
Co-Founder & Executive Director of the South Asian American Digital Archive
Advisor in The White House Office of Public Engagement; Liaison to the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) and Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities.
Indian-Pakistani American social innovation consultant, writer and traveler; Project Manager for Ashoka Changemakers
Comedian, actor, host, and writer based in Los Angeles; host of docu-series STAND UP PLANET
Notable Past Speakers
Grandson and Biographer of Mahatma Gandhi
Chief Executive Officer of Pepsi
Chief Medical Correspondent for CNN
Assistant U.S. Attorney for Connecticut
Special Advisor for UN Secretary General
Associate Council to National Basketball Association
Former Michigan Senator and House Representative
Outstanding Social Justice Program Award 2012 & 2014
awarded by Office of Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs (MESA) & Trotter Multicultural Center