Chinmaya Academy Board

Brahmacharini Shripriya Chaitanya (Special Advisor)

Brahmacharini Shripriya Chaitanya was born in Nairobi, Kenya where she was first introduced to the tradition of Advaita Vedanta through the Chinmaya Mission.

Her family emigrated to London in her childhood and she continued to attend youth classes with the organisation.

After graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Politics from the University of York, she took part in a one-year community service-oriented program for youth offered by Chinmaya Mission in India and spent time volunteering at educational institutions in Chennai.

Inspired by this experience and previous exposure to scriptural study, she joined a two-year residential Vedanta course at the Sandeepany Sadhanalaya ashram in Mumbai and was initiated into the monastic order in September 2016.

She is the resident teacher of Chinmaya Mission in the UK and shares the message of Advaita Vedanta through discourses and study groups, workshops and retreats.

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Suresh Wadhwani (Special Advisor)

Suresh Wadhwani has been serving Chinmaya Mission in many different roles for over 20 years.

He is currently President and Trustee of Chinmaya Mission UK, and Trustee of Chinmaya University (Vishwavidyapeeth) in India.

He has had a 30-year long career in Financial Markets in the US & UK most recently as Proprietary Trader/Fund Manager at mainstream investment banks and hedge funds in New York and London (such as Goldman Sachs, Lehman, Barclays, Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi).

Suresh has an MS (Computer Sciences) and BE (Electrical Engineering (High Honors) from the Stevens Institute of Technology (New Jersey, USA). Suresh has been conducting Adult Vedanta classes for the past 20 years in the UK.

Dr Ramesh Pattni, DPhil (Oxford) OBE

Ramesh Pattni OBE has been a teacher and practitioner of Vedanta for over three decades.

Dr Pattni is a graduate of King’s College London, holds three master’s degrees. He completed a doctorate in Yoga Psychology from the University of Oxford in 2015.

He tutors at the University of Oxford at both the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies and the Faculty of Theology and Religion and gives public talks on Hinduism. He holds regular weekly classes on Hindu scriptures including and the Bhagavad Gita, the Upanishads and the texts and commentaries by Swami Chinmayananda.  He has extensively lectured and conducted workshops and retreats on diverse subjects over the past two decades in Yoga and the Non-Dual (Advaita Vedanta) traditions.

DR Pattni holds/has held many public positions, including, Vice President of Chinmaya Mission UK, Vice President of Hindu Forum of Britain, Trustee of DAWN Counselling Services, Trustee of Hindu Education Board UK, Founder and former Co-Chair of the Hindu Christian Forum, former Trustee of Interfaith Network and continues to serve the wider community in the UK and abroad.

For his voluntary work in interfaith relations and community services in the UK, he was bestowed an OBE in the New Year’s Honours 2020 by Her Majesty the Queen.

Dr Abhijit Mandal

Abhijit has been teaching Sanskrit for many years at the Chinmaya Mission in London and has made presentations about Sanskrit in public while representing the Mission.

He conducts seminars and talks occasionally on Indian scriptural literature. He has a PhD from London Business School & MBA from Yale University (formerly worked as Process Engineer in designing refineries in Italy).

One of his current research topics is computer modelling and simulation of metaphysical processes to validate / verify the process aspects described in scriptural texts.

Dr Smita Samani

Dr Smita Samani, was first introduced to Vedanta 25 years ago when an inner spiritual quest brought her to listen to discourses by the Current Head of Chinmaya Mission, Pujya Swami Swaroopananda.

Since then, Dr Samani has immersed herself in an in-depth study of Vedanta through all the on-line courses by Chinmaya International Foundation on introductory & advanced Vedanta, Upanishads, the Bhagavad Gita, as well countless other Vedantic texts & the Sanskrit language at Chinmaya Mission UK & international global camps.

She conducts some of the longest running Chinmaya Mission UK study classes. She has served on the committee of Chinmaya Mission UK for over 20 years and currently serves as the overall Study Class coordinator.

She previously coordinated some of the UK’s most well-attended Jnana Yagnas (spiritual lectures) for 15 years for Pujya Swami Tejomayananda, Pujya Swami Swaroopananda and many other Acharyas of Chinmaya Mission.

Dr Samani was a partner in an 8 partner GP practice in Brent amongst her many roles within the practice, she was a GP Trainer & part Examiner with a specialist interest in community gynaecology.

She retired in 2012 to dedicate her life to the service, study and dissemination of Vedanta through Chinmaya Mission UK.

Prof Lakshmanan Shivakumar

Lakshmanan Shivakumar is a professor of accounting at London Business School.

He was formerly the subject area Chair for the Accounting group at London Business School and has held visiting positions at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business, the Indian School of Business, Singapore Management University, the Australian National University and the University of New South Wales.

He is also a past council member of the American Accounting Association. His research has been presented to several regulators and development agencies, including the African Development Bank, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York and the Singapore Stock Exchange.

He has been involved with Chinmaya Mission UK since 2005 and has been a regular attendee of their classes. He is an administrator for the Swaranjali (devotional songs) wing of the Mission and volunteers in their finance group.

Prof. Uma S. Kambhampati 

Uma is a Professor of Economics at the University of Reading in the UK.

Uma was born in India and migrated with her parents to the UK in 1981. Uma lives in London with her husband and two children. She has been a member of Chinmaya Mission since 2005, when she first registered her children in the Bal Vihar Classes in Hendon. She has since been a regular attendee at many adult study classes in the Mission. She also facilitates a Sunday morning Adult Study Class for BV Parents. The text being studied currently is Vivekachudamani.

Uma is a Professor of Economics at the University of Reading in the UK. She is also currently the Head of the School of Politics Economics and International Relations. She graduated from the University of Cambridge with a BA Economics (1987), MPhil in Economics (1988) and a PhD in Economics in 1992.

Kishor Tanna

Kishor Tanna’s interest in Spiritual life was inspired at a young age by his father who was a keen follower of Shri Aurobindo.

He become an active member of Chinmaya Mission UK during the past 5 years. After attending classes in Bhagavad Gita and Upanishad, for several years he completed the 6 week residential “Dharma Sevak Course” (Basic Vedanta) in July-August 2016 and “Vedanta Darshan” (Advanced Vedanta) in February 2017, both in Coimbatore.

Kishor Tanna retired from British Telecommunications Plc after 43 years of service fulfilling numerous senior management roles.

His passion for education never stopped (apart from his graduation, he completed his MBA) which lead him to pursue Masters in Telecommunication with UCL completing it in 2011.