Smita Shah, an Indian American from Chicago, always knew she was smart. Unlike the rest of her classmates, she would spend time in the back of the class making her English word problems into algebraic equations. As a young adult she found her calling in Electrical Engineering and continued with a Master’s degree from MIT in civil engineering.
Shortly after graduating, she started her own company called Spaan Technology, a company dedicated to building government and city-backed projects. Now the CEO of this successful Chicago based firm, she shows the same drive as she did while in school. But Smita Shah doesn’t stop there, she also takes on community projects, charities and causes that interest her. She doesn’t put up with mediocrity and works hard to make sure she completes everything she takes on in the very best way possible.
Smita Shah’s Community Interests
Besides her business interests, Smita Shah also works within the community of Chicago to promote diversity, find ways to uplift ethnic communities and promote ideas she finds interesting. One such project she chairs is the Annual Legacy of Mahatma Gandhi luncheon. As the international representative and committee chair for Delhi, the Indian sister city of Chicago, she decided to establish this yearly luncheon to commemorate Indian businesses in Chicago and to promote ideas to the community of Chicago as a whole.
This year at the Annual luncheon which commemorates the legacy Mahatma Gandhi left to humanity, Chicago Mayor Lightfoot proclaimed October second to be the official Mahatma Gandhi day in Chicago. The pronouncement is made to recognize the 150th year of his birth and acknowledges the deep peace legacy he left to all humanity and the importance he holds to the Chicago Indian community. Smita Shah was delighted with the outcome of the luncheon.
Smita Shah reiterated in a recent interview, “It has been a pleasure working with the community of Chicago and it is wonderful that our efforts to bring together the different ethnic communities of the city is working. It was a real honor for the Indian American community here in the city to have this proclamation made. It was also a personal honor to have the work we have done for the Mahatma Gandhi luncheon recognized in this way.” The idea of the luncheon came about when Ms. Shah demonstrated how Chicago was made up of many communities, and mentioned that they should all be recognized for the work they do. This luncheon and program now recognizes Mahatma Gandhi as a great man, an inspiration to the Chicago Indian community and all of us. Learn more: https://shiakapos.com/long-before-stem-was-chic-there-was-smita-shah/
The strong relationship between Delhi, India and Chicago shows the commitment Chicago has with its Indian community and recognizes its cultural attributions to the city. Through young leadership roles like Smita Shahs, the Delhi committee has supported the luncheon since 2014 and will continue to do so as a way of honoring the similarities and differences between Americans and Indians, and the combined effort to commemorate Mahatma Gandhi.