Board Members

Ramamurthy Shankaran

Mr. Ramamurthy Shankaran is an entrepreneur with over 29 years of expertise in post-harvest management technologies, with specific focus on packhouse operations and cold storage management. His company, Frigoscan Post Harvest Technologies, founded in 2011, provides state of art technology in packaging and cold storage of highly perishable fruits, thereby adding value and revenue to agri-business industry. The company not only supports sorting, grading and packing, but also creates ripening chambers and food processing units. Prior to founding the company, Mr Shankaran worked with M/s. Blue Star Limited in Cold Chain Business Development for ten years. He has a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the prestigious Guindy college of Engineering, Chennai and a master’s degree in food production engineering from Denmark. His other interests include practicing business psycho-analysis for enhancing human skills, mentoring startups through TREC-STEP (NIT) & IIFPT. He takes special interest in social development of women, their health, hygiene and sanitation and works through SHGs in Jharkhand state towards this objective. He has also been involved in the restoration and renovation of ancient temples in Nagapattinam, Tiruvarur and Thanjavur Districts of Tamil Nadu, India.

Dr Sita Ratna Devi Duddi

Dr Sita Ratna Devi Duddi brings more than 26 years of experience towards improving health outcomes in India; for the past 14 years she has worked with national and international NGOs on donor-funded and government supported public health initiatives with a focus on Health system strengthening, specifically policy Analysis, Quality assurance, institutional capacity building and Advocacy. She has vast exposure to Health and Nutrition programs as a key member of CARE India and having worked in HIV/AIDS programs for more than 10 years. Her current role involves building Policy and Capacity on Universal Health Care and Patient centred healthcare. She has been instrumental in leading dialogue across the country to build attention on Reproductive and Child Health, Program Quality, restructuring existing resources for program delivery and designing modules for capacity building.

Dr Ratna brings both the clinical qualifications to support high-quality service delivery as well as the management and operations experience, including expertise in budgeting, business development, fundraising, program planning, staff capacity-building and monitoring and evaluation to ensure program success. In her current role, Dr Ratna leads DakshamA Health towards its mission and goals. She has also founded the Indian Association for Patient Groups (IAPG) that is affiliated to the International Association on which she sits on the board. She holds an MBBS degree from Sambalpur University, a post graduate diploma in HR and Finance from the reputed Symbiosis University, Pune and an MBA in healthcare from Sikkim Manipal University. She speaks Oriya, Telugu, Hindi, English and Gujarati.

Dr Thiyagarajan Thiripurasundari

Dr Thiyagarajan Thiripurasundari, is a seasoned development professional with over 20 years of experience in child rights, gender and youth issues. Her doctoral research was on migrant, bonded child labour in stone quarries and she has special interest in early childhood development, and education during emergencies. She has rich experience of working with leading non-profit organisations focused on children, such as UNICEF, Save the Children UK, Railway Children UK & Childline. Currently she is the Programme advisor for Freedom Fund, an international organization working in child labour, children in bondage, child rights and education.

Her work on facilitating the creation of child friendly spaces for children and young adults living alone or at risk, alongside the Department of Social Welfare and Education thereby bringing them into social safety nets has received widespread recognition. She has facilitated successful implementation of Standard Operating Procedures for Railways to ensure care and protection of children who use trains as a means to run away from home. She has so far trained over 1200 Railway Protection Force personnel in Southern Railways on child rights and child protection protocols and supported the Government of Tamil Nadu to document their best Practices in the implementation of Juvenile Justice System in the state and helped present it at the National level. She has presented and published multiple papers in journals and conferences on early childhood development and impact of culture on education. She is featured regularly on television shows that discuss rights and challenges of children and women.

Vunnava Janardhan Rao

Mr. Vunnava Janardhan Rao has over twenty years of experience in Planning, Monitoring, Evaluation, Learning, and Knowledge Management in the development sector. He is currently a senior consultant with the Asian Development Bank, leading health and hygiene convergence programmes across India. He has a master’s degree in Geophysics and Bachelor’s degree in Public Relations and has received special recognition award for the services rendered at Catholic Relief Services and Project Concern International.

He has a rich experience in working with leading international agencies such as Asian Development Bank, Consiel Sante, Abt Associates, Project Concern International (PCI), Emmanuel Hospital Association, Family Health International (FHI), International HIV/AIDS Alliance, CARE India, Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and Water and Sanitation for the Urban Poor (WSUP) supporting programme design, developing results framework, key performance indicators and analyzing data for decision making in Health, Education, Watershed, Forestry, HIV/AIDS, and System strengthening.

He has developed Standard Operating Procedures to improve data quality, for National Health Management Information System of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.

Senior Management

Dr Shanmugasundaram Paramasivan- Founder and Chief Mentor

Dr Shanmugasundaram Paramasivan has over forty years of experience in WASH programme development, design, implementation, evaluation and research. He founded Sanitation First India as Wherever the Need India Services in 2007. He has pioneered non-sewered sanitation in India and designed the first ever ecosan school toilet block and container-based sanitation system in India. He is a well-respected international expert on all aspects of Water, Sanitation, indigenous WASH technology, and agricultural research. Prior to 2007, Dr Paramasivan was the WASH and Shelter advisor to CARE India’s Tsunami Response Programme and the Country Representative of WaterAid in India. Apart from leading mainstream WASH programmes, he has led field data collection on Hydraulic parameters in river basins, designed drinking water and watershed development activities based on water balance and developed indigenous technologies for soil and water conservation. Dr Paramasivan has two PhDs, one from Annamalai University, Chidambaram on the socio-economic impact of Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Programmes and another from the Inter-American University of Humanistic Studies, Florida, USA on water resource management by the Conjunctive Use of Water. Apart from this, he has a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering, master’s degrees in hydraulics engineering and sociology and a post graduate diploma in community water and sanitation from WEDC, Loughborough.

He has published several books and articles and presented in national and international conferences on a wide range of topics such as conjunctive use of water, roof top rain water harvesting, ground water recharging, water shed development, rainwater probability and dry land farming, surface water tank management, reduction of diarrhoea through integrated hygiene and sanitation, and marketing sanitation in rural India. He has developed IEC materials, training manuals, master training protocols, water health and safety policies and white papers both for organizations and Governments.

Tirukurungudi Santhanam Padmapriya - Chief Executive

Ms. Padmapriya T S has over twenty years of experience in top management roles of leading international development organisations such as CARE, Save the Children UK, University of Washington I-TECH, and British Council to name a few. Prior to her current role, she was the Country Director of Lebara Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Lebara Telecom in the UK.

Padmapriya has specialised in strategic planning, operations management, grants and budgets management, policy development and internal controls for the non-profit sector. She is an Associate Member of the Institute of Cost and Management Accountants of India and holds master’s degrees in commerce as well as Business Administration with specialization in Human Resources from the University of Madras. She also holds executive certification in Global Health Management from the University of Washington, USA, executive certification in Change Management from the Indian Institute of Management, Kolkata and Strategic HR Management, from Loyola Institute of Business Administration. She is also a trained Social Return on Investment practitioner, from Social Value, UK. She has extensive experience in recruiting, training and working with governance boards. Padmapriya has been awarded the Rotary Vocational Service Excellence Award in 2014. She is among the top heritage bloggers of India, and is a heritage researcher, walk curator, speaker and published author.