Mission & History

         AAIWO is an 501(c) (3) non-profit organization for Asian Indian women promoting professional development and education through scholarships and cultural outreach programs. 

Our aim is to foster and support women for personal and professional advancement while providing volunteer opportunities. AAIWO promotes culture and education while establishing productive social networks for women. AAIWO sponsors multi-cultural activities to promote cultural understanding in our community. The first Board Members of this organization were Usha Ahuja, Nilli Sawhney, Vimala Shekar, Veena Bhupali, Rita Singh, Susan Karimpil, Uma Ganesan, Manju Rastogi, Vandana Marwaha, Mona Alag, and Nisha Jain.

The Helpline has played a pivotal role in helping women change their lives for the better. Over the years, it has helped many women in situations of domestic abuse, financial distress, and navigating immigration law challenges.

AAIWO has hosted many successful seminars such as "Stepping Out", which covered topics on career and business development, starting a business on a shoe string budget, volunteering, and fashion shows.

Deepa Rao, President

For the first ten years, fundraisers hosted by AAIWO helped raise money for scholarships for displaced home-makers and youth experiencing financial stress. AAIWO distributed 60% of the funds and 40% of the money raised was saved and invested. These accumulated funds are now with the Cleveland Foundation. Each year a percentage of the funds are taken and distributed as scholarships in collaboration with the Cleveland Foundation.

Board Members

President: Deepa Rao

Vice Presidents: Ruby & Swati Venkataraman
Secretaries: Pushpalatha Venkataraman & Mahima Rao
Treasurer: Sonali
Helpline Chair: Indira Palekar
Scholarships: Dr.Nita Sahai
Youth Leader: Shreya Bangalore
Youth Coordinators:Anika Rao, Neha Kulkarni, Karan Bahl, Shashwath and Ameeya Gargesha
Saheli - Cleveland Chapter: Kiran Nigam
Saheli - Columbus Chapter: Jayashree Bidari
Public Relations: Santoshi Kedarsetty
Nanny Services Job Match: Jayashree Bidari
Special Needs Children: Archana Prasad
Singles Group: Kokila Patel
Board of Directors: Manju Rastogi, Lynnette Sequeira, Jayashree Bidari, Sharda Iyer, Jyotsna Maseelall, Geetika Pruthi and Vineeta Jayaram