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  • 2020-03-25 6:30 PM | Anonymous

    We had a great time speaking with our members and friends at our last happy hour.  We hope it was as valuable for you as it was for us. We're going to have many more of these in the coming months. So, stay tuned, subscribe to our newsletter, follow us on facebook and twitter to find out more about SAJA's programs and events through this quarantine period.  


  • 2019-08-17 9:15 PM | Anonymous

    South Asian Journalists Association will be hosting its 25th anniversary gala on Saturday, October 5, 2019 at the grand ballroom of WeWork, Bryant Park. We're celebrating 25 years of SAJA and the ever growing and ever achieving world of journalism relating to South Asians and South Asian. We will be honoring journalists with awards in 8 categories. There will be wine, food, shop talk, nostalgia and a whole lot of great people to meet - basically, every reason you should be there. 

    SAJA invites you to join in celebrating 25 wonderful years of the South Asian journalists' community.




    Amitava Kumar is the author of several works of nonfiction and two novels. Kumar’s most recent novel is Immigrant, Montana, included in the list of most “notable books of the year” at the New York Times and also the “best books of the year” at The New Yorker. (Former President Barack Obama also named Immigrant, Montana among his favorite books of the year.) In Spring 2020, Duke University Press will publish Kumar’s book on writing and style, Every Day I Write the Book. In 2016, Kumar was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship for nonfiction and also a Ford Fellowship from US Artists. His writing has been published in Granta, Harper’s, The New Yorker, the Guardian, Brick, Vanity Fair, and the New York Times. Kumar has been awarded residencies at Yaddo, MacDowell Colony, the Lannan Foundation, the Norman Mailer Writing Colony, and the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Center in Italy. He is the Helen D. Lockwood Professor of English at Vassar College.

    Mira Jacob is the author and illustrator of Good Talk: A Memoir in Conversations. Her critically acclaimed novel, The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing, was a Barnes & Noble Discover New Writers pick, shortlisted for India’s Tata First Literature Award, and longlisted for the Brooklyn Literary Eagles Prize. It was named one of the best books of 2014 by Kirkus Reviews, the Boston Globe, Goodreads, Bustle, and The Millions. Her writing and drawings have appeared in The New York Times, Electric Literature, Tin House, Literary Hub, Guernica, Vogue, the Telegraph, and Buzzfeed, and she has a drawn column on Shondaland. She currently teaches at The New School, and she is a founding faculty member of the MFA Program at Randolph College.

    Dr. Neeraj Kaushal is an economist and journalist by training, and an expert on comparative immigration policy and the author of a new book on this topic, Blaming Immigrants. She is professor of Social Policy and chair of the doctoral program at Columbia School of Social Work. In Blaming Immigrants: Nationalism and the Economics of Global Movement she investigates the core causes of rising disaffection towards immigrants globally and tests common complaints against immigration. She has authored or co-authored over 50 peer-reviewed scientific articles and book chapters on immigrants and other vulnerable populations. She writes a monthly column in the Economic Times, India’s largest financial daily.

    Suketu Mehta
    is the New York-based author of This Land is Our Land: An Immigrant’s Manifesto (2019) and Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found (2005), which won the Kiriyama Prize and the Hutch Crossword Award, and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, the Lettre Ulysses Prize, the BBC4 Samuel Johnson Prize, and the Guardian First Book Award. He has won the O. Henry Prize, a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship for his fiction, a Whiting Award in Fiction and Nonfiction, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. He has also written original screenplays for films, including New York, I Love You (2008) and Mission Kashmir (2000). His work has been published in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, Granta, Harper’s, Time, and Newsweek, and has been featured on NPR’s Fresh Air and All Things Considered. He is an Associate Professor of Journalism at New York University.


    6-7 PM
    Registration & Cocktail Hour  

    7 PM
    SAJA Over The Years : A panel of SAJA board members promise to everyone down the memory lane.
    Panelists: Sree Sreenivasan, Anusha Shrivastava, Vikas Bajaj, Sharaf Mowjood, Jyoti Thottam.
    Moderator: Prerana Thakurdesai  

    7.45 PM
    SAJA Journalism Awards presentation

    8.10 PM
    Keynote Panel: Writing on Ethnicities, State & Citizenship in our times with Amitava Kumar & Suketu Mehta 

    Networking Hour  

  • 2019-02-28 5:00 PM | Anonymous

    Image result for fast company logo

    Join SAJA for an exclusive fireside chat with Fast Company Editor-In-Chief Stephanie Mehta. 

    Come learn tricks, tips and get the right tools from one of the nation's top digital news directors and network with your peers. 

    Moderated by,Image result for stephanie mehta

    SAJA's Sameepa Shetty 

    Date: Feb 28th, 2019

    Time: 5-6 PM

    Limited seating available.

    Register Here

  • 2019-02-12 6:00 PM | Anonymous

    Let's get together, catch up and talk about what SAJA has in store this year! Non-SAJA members welcome, and the event is FREE!

    Green Zone
    2226 18th Street Northwest
    Washington DC 

  • 2018-12-08 11:31 AM | Anonymous

    The most talked-about wedding since the Royals, Priyanka Chopra and NickJonas' recent nuptials dominated headlines, Tweets and generated several think pieces - but none more controversial than Mariah Smith's take in The Cut. Published this week, the backlash was enough for the online publication to remove the entire article from their website. What's left is a note from The Cut's editor.

    Join Shefali S. Kulkarni of the Washington Post and former SAJA Vice President, in a conversation with journalists and writers about why Priyanka and Nick's wedding was covered in such a controversial spotlight.
    Guests include:

    • Aseem Chabra, author of Priyanka Chopra: The Incredible Story of a Global Bollywood Star
    • Mallika Rao, a contributor to The Atlantic
    • Elizabeth Segran Ph.D., senior staff writer at Fast Company
    • Aarti Virani, former SAJA VP, arts and culture writer and contributing editor to Vogue India

      Bring your questions and join us!

      Note: SAJA invited The Cut to join us in a discussion about Smith's piece, but we did not hear back from the publication's editor-in-chief.

  • 2016-11-28 10:59 PM | Shefali Kulkarni

    SAJA Vice President Shefali S. Kulkarni of BBC News spoke with journalists and experts in a conversation about the US elections what its aftermath means for the US and South Asian Americans. 

    Guests include: 

    • Sayu Bhojwani, founder of New American Leaders Project, which works to elect first- and second-gen candidates for office (follow her @SayuBhojwani).
    • Manu Raju, Senior Political Reporter for CNN who has been covering the US Election this year (follow him @mkraju).
    • Arun Venugopal, Reporter of United States of Anxiety, WNYC election podcast (follow him @arunNYC).
    • Congressman-elect Raja Krishnamoorthi who just won the 8th Congressional District race in Illinois (follow him @RajaForCongress).
  • 2015-02-07 2:07 PM | Anonymous

    SAJA Announces 2015 Executive Board and multi-year grant from Dow Jones Foundation; South Asian Journalists Association marks its 21st year as a major organization, bringing together 1,000+ journalists in the US and Canada

    Feb 5, 2015, New York, NY -- The board of directors of SAJA, the South Asian Journalists Association (@sajahq), appointed a new executive committee at its first meeting of the year in January.

    Sharaf Mowjood (@Mowjood), an associate producer at NBC’s Special Reports With Brian Williams, was re-elected as president. Aarti Virani (@aartivirani), a freelance arts and culture writer and contributing editor at Vogue India, was elected as vice president. A new addition to SAJA, Trisha Sakhuja (@Tsakhuja13), content manager at and managing editor at Brown Girl Magazine, was elected as secretary. Veteran SAJA member and Connecticut-based freelance writer, John Laxmi (@johnlaxmi), was re-elected as treasurer. And Divya Singaravelu (@divya_158), who was a student coordinator for SAJA at Columbia University and currently serves as a digital transformation consultant at Sapient Global Markets, was elected as officer-at-large.

    Other board members include: Shefali Kulkarni (@shefalikulkarni), digital producer at Public Radio International; Sovy Azhath (@SovyProducer), producer and writer at CNN Headline News; Anup Kaphle (@AnupKaphle), digital foreign editor at The Washington Post; Mythili Rao (@MythiliRao), producer at WNYC; Kamini Ramdeen (@KaminiRamdeen), content editor at Zee TV USA and editor at Brown Girl Magazine and SAJA co-founder and chief digital officer at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Sree Sreenivasan (@sree).

    “We are thrilled to welcome new board members who are already bringing in fresh ideas and programming for SAJA,” said Mowjood. “These are exciting times for our organization.”

    “As SAJA looks towards the next twenty years, we’re eager to contribute to all our members’ journalism journeys in increasingly meaningful, tangible and effective ways,” said Virani.

    SAJA will continue its mission of awarding journalism scholarships to students of South Asian descent or those interested in the diaspora and build upon its other fellowship and internship programs.

    Additionally, SAJA is also delighted to announce it has won a three-year grant from the Dow Jones Foundation to help SAJA’s membership and donor base. For the next three years, the Foundation, which is funded largely by Dow Jones, a News Corp. company (@DJNF), will provide SAJA with a base grant, as well as a significant conditional grant that is tied to SAJA demonstrating its ability to broaden its base of supporters.

    “SAJA has been instrumental in expanding the diverse pool of journalism talent in the US and we are glad to help them in this pioneering effort to broaden their membership and deepen their base of supporters,” said Raju Narisetti (@raju), a Foundation director. Narisetti is also a life member of SAJA and currently Senior Vice President, Strategy, at News Corp.

    “Developing a sustainable, diversified and long-term donor base has been a long-term goal of SAJA and we are grateful for this grant in continuing that process,” said Laxmi.

    SAJA’s "Dollar-a-Day" campaign, already launched, has made a great start in cultivating a varied donor base. If you would like to participate in our “Dollar-a-Day” campaign or make a donation of any amount, please go to

    To learn more about SAJA scholarships and other funding opportunities visit: The new 2015 national board voted on approving up to $50,000 in scholarships and internship funds for its student members. These funds aim to fuel young South Asian journalists and students propel their media careers.

  • 2014-12-01 9:49 PM | Jigar Mehta

    SAJA members are now invited to vote online to fill seven open positions on the board. Candidate statements are below.

    Voting will be open until 3pm on Friday December 12th.

    Note: You must be lifetime or full member of SAJA member to vote. By voting online, you are submitting a proxy ballot. In person voting will occur at the annual members meeting December 12th in NYC. 

    Candidates for SAJA Board 2015-2016:



    My name is Sopan Deb and it would be my honor to be considered to serve on the SAJA board. I believe my versatility and experience in multiple newsrooms across many different platforms would be an asset to SAJA. I have many ideas for events, including camera workshops and panel discussions. With my experience at the Boston Globe, NBC, Al Jazeera America, Major League Baseball and, now, CBS News, I have been able to report on stories all over the country. This has given me a real perspective on the challenges facing newsrooms today and I would love to be able to help other journalists tell the stories that need to be told. I am also passionate about shedding more light on the great work of South Asian journalists across the country. I would like to organize more SAJA-sponsored networking events in New York City, as well as panel discussions that challenge the audience as well as the speakers. On top of that, I would like to organize workshops with the best journalists in a given field. These could include working with cameras, social media, long form writing workshops and blogging effectively. Thank you in advance for your time and consideration. I look forward to continuing to be an active member of SAJA and helping the organization grow even larger.



    I joined SAJA in 2003 as a graduating high school senior embarking on a career in journalism. Since then, I’ve worked at a variety of media outlets from The Village Voice to my current position atPublic Radio International's The World. I've covered a variety of beats and stories from health care to Portland's fashion week. And my participation in SAJA is an integral part of myjournalisticpath. Today, I have two years under my belt as a board member of SAJA, and the organization's secretary. During my time on SAJA's board, I increased its social media presence, judged fellowship and scholarship applications, coordinated the 2013 and 2014 convention and awards ceremonies. I hosted happy hours and newsroom tours in Washington DC, along with the daily but vital tasks that come with being the organizations' secretary. Being a board member of SAJA was alotof hard work that required patience and focus. And if re-elected, I work towards improving SAJA and its journalism endeavors. I plan to focus on two crucial areas of our organization: First, I’ll revamp a great platform to which SAJA has wide reach for all its members. Secondly, I’ll increase SAJA membership and activities - outside of New York. While New York is SAJA's home, our membership’s geographic diversity is an asset we need to recognize. SAJA is a small but powerful and thriving organization. I look forward to taking part in its continued growth and development.



    I’m an Associate Producer at NBC's Special reports with Brian Williams. I am grateful for this opportunity to ask for your support in seeking another term as a SAJA Board member. I started with SAJA as a volunteer, joined the board in 2010 and was the 2014 SAJA President. Over the last 4 years I have helped raise over $45,000 in scholarship funds for SAJA, including bringing new donors. This past year alone the SAJA distributed $60,000 in scholarships, organized meet-and-greets in various newsrooms, held the organization’s first ifthar (with all the proceeds going to the scholarship fund), and celebrated our 20th Anniversary with a sold-out convention and awards program. I'm proud to say that all of these events were covered financially by supporters which enabled more funds to directly benefit scholarship recipients. But I am not asking you to support me for what I have done, but for what I want to continue to bring to SAJA. As new generations of South Asian journalists enter the industry, with different goals, and aspirations, SAJA is poised to grow and mature as an organization, to fill these needs as a new generation of journalists enter the fold. With my next term on the board, I hope to establish more paid fellowships at established journalism networks, program and opportunities for mid-career journalists and stream-lining the next phase of SAJA's veteran financial members with a board of directors and trust fund. It’s my commitment to help SAJA empower others as SAJA has empowered me.



    Learning about the art of journalistic thought and writing did not come for me in the form of a lecture hall and a well spoken professor, it came from direct experiences outside of what I originally went to school for. I began my career in journalism shortly after college when I started writing for Brown Girl Magazine. I had the opportunity to do something I was inwardly and outwardly passionate about, writing, but I had to learn the formal processes of writing by getting out of my comfort zone and entering the field. My experiences have taken me from writing stories to editing stories and from photo editing to graphic design, which are skills I use frequently for U.S. and Brown Girl Magazine. Getting involved with the South Asian diaspora, interviewing indie musicians, filmmakers, business men/women and community changers has greatly changed my perspective on the world around me and creates the innate inner urge to not only be apart of the community, but to help evolve, change and modernize the communities that we find ourselves apart of. SAJA has a large hand in being able to help fellow journalists change the world around us, and I gladly and eagerly put in my application to become apart of the change by applying for a position on the SAJA board, where I hope to help support the organization and create more opportunities for South Asian students and professionals to indulge in their passions.



    I'm an arts and culture writer who contributes to outlets including Vogue India, The Wall Street Journal, Travel + Leisure, and NBC's Asian America vertical, among others. On any given day, I could be interviewing a rising Indian-American movie star or researching the digitization of arranged marriage. Come January, I'll support Professors Ari Goldman and Yogi Trivedi in teaching a course on covering Indian religions at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism. As my work reflects, I'm passionate about the intersection of South Asia and journalism. During my two years on the SAJA Board, I've immersed myself in everything from securing scholarship sponsors and partnering with an enterprising journalism startup for a memorable portfolio review to serving on the leadership team for 2013's Yale Club Gala. This year, alongside co-chairs Mythili Rao and Shefali Kulkarni, I worked to bring you a sold-out 2014 National Convention that addressed subjects like newsroom diversity and unlikely paths to journalism. SAJA now feels like an extension of myself and its members a thriving community of friends and mentors. If re-elected, I look forward to continue to be an advocate for fellow freelancers. I'm also making a commitment to engage with members to see how we can make SAJA work for you: what are we missing and how can we contribute to your journalism journeys more effectively? As our organization looks towards the next twenty years, these are crucial questions to answer and I would be honored to approach them with you.



    Coming from a non-traditional journalism background, I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I first started writing for a local newspaper. Sure, I knew the basics about reporting and writing catchy ledes, but I was clueless about journalism in the real world. I joined a staff of five - four reporters and one editor – thinking I would quit in time to start law school. Soon enough, I was asked to cover community board meetings, attend protests, watch kids perform at their school plays and listen to politicians defend the government over and over again, but no matter how hard or easy the story was, I was required to submit my piece in time for deadline. Story after story, I realized my words meant a lot to the people of Western Queens. They waited for their weekly paper because we told them local stories they deeply cared about. And just like that, journalism became more than a pass-time job, it became a passion. In addition to news reporting, I manage a staff of 30 freelance writers at and 25 freelance writers at I understand the ins-and-outs about running an efficient team that delivers and impacts change. My attention to detail, management skills, respect for journalism and new-age media, and SAJA’s mission, make me a strong candidate for an open board position for the year term of 2014-15.



    I am honored to run once again for the SAJA Board. One of my proudest titles is co-founder of SAJA and I am excited to spend another two years working on behalf of our members. After 21 years at Columbia Journalism School, I've spent the past 1.5 years working at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and seeing a whole different side of our industry. I run my 70-person digital media team like a newsroom and emphasize the importance of storytelling in everything we do. But I also appreciate the role journalists play in helping society understand complex and important stories like art, culture and more. I would like to spend my next two SAJA years working on the following: training opportunities for journalists via workshops, webinars, etc; an expanded series of webcasts that builds on the success of our 200+ shows that got more than 2m listens already; helping journalists understand the changing media landscape so they can continue to thrive in it. Thank you for the opportunity to serve for the 21st year in a row.



    Having begun my journey in broadcast in 2004, my journalism career has since come a long way and in the process assumed the roles of reporter, anchor, film critic, business strategist and more recently, that of a digital transformation consultant. Being a recent graduate of the Columbia Journalism School, I cherished my experience as a student coordinator for SAJA@CU. I organized newsroom visits, guest lectures and panel discussions. Also, as my role as Treasurer of the Society of Professional Journalists at Columbia University, I was responsible for managing budgets and leading the largest fundraising campaign: J-School branded clothing and SPJ designs. My experience as a member of the advisory board of Newspoint TV (one of India's leading global, 24-hour news network) and my role as Sponsorship Director for the Chicago South Asian Arts Council (a Chicago based non-profit that promotes cinema, arts and culture) have honed by media management skills, allowing me to be creative yet pragmatic and financially shrewd. As a member of the SAJA Executive Board, I wish to contribute by linking and leveraging my prior experiences and my global journalism network. Strategy and fund-raising have been my strongest capabilities; I envision applying these skills would facilitate effective networking and career coaching for SAJA members as well as providing effective branding and outreach for the SAJA brand. I would also like to contribute towards mentoring journalists on incorporating technology for reporting compelling stories.

  • 2014-06-02 10:02 PM | Anup Kaphle

    The South Asian Journalists Association (SAJA) is accepting entries for the 2014 SAJA Journalism Awards in 11 separate categories, including the Daniel Pearl Award for Outstanding Reporting, for stories on South Asia and/or the South Asian diaspora.

    The deadline for entering the awards is June 30, 2014.

    The winners will be announced at SAJA's 20th Annual Awards Gala in November in New York City. 

    There is a $50 entry fees for each category (student category is free), which requires your name, title of your entry, and full permanent URL of your work. Please read the instructions for each award category and to apply, click on the categories. 

    If you have any questions, email SAJA Awards Chair Anup Kaphle at

    Full information on the categories and how to apply is available here:

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