We are a group of individuals working to share the best practices in the area of health, nutrition, mind-body balance and relationships.
Living the dream can be that. Making a change toward wellness and knowing what it means to keep doing it consistently is the process.
Malini Waghray PhD
Malini Waghray, is the editor, immersive researcher and developer at Choosing Wellness. She explores the complications of surplus of food and paucity of good health with people’s stories and expert opinions. Malini has been the Director of Code for Princeton, a brigade for Code for America, working on civic-tech, helping teams create digital technology to benefit the residents of Princeton township. Her work at marginaliaa as a freelance user experience researcher yielded insights on user communities and the value of keeping technology close to the user. Waghray has a PhD. in Sociology from the University of Hyderabad and software technology certification from Rutgers University, USA.
Trained in some excellent sociology in India and an experience spanning 25 years, she has been a community volunteer in Randolph and Montgomery New Jersey since ’00. Malini is a member, Board of Trustees at the Mary Jacobs Library Foundation and the chair at Mary Jacobs Ootsav. She divides her time between Hyderabad and New Jersey.
Svapna Sabnis MD
Svapna is a pediatrician, mom and a wife. She is in private practice and is Clinical Associate Professor of Pediatrics Medical College of Wisconsin and Clinical Adjunct Professor at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. She is an immunization advocate and Director of Immunize Milwaukee and the Wisconsin Council on Immunization Practices. She is on the board of several peer reviewed journals and an active contributor to research work.
She loves to teach medical students and residents, was awarded the Best Doctors in America 2010- 2017. She is coauthor of a textbook –Pediatric Decision Making Strategies. She likes to garden and dabbles in watercolors in her free time. She’s still trying to have it all and achieve balance in her life.
Meena is a yoga teacher but it was not easy to adapt it in her lifestyle. She started out being a pessimist about yoga and has gone on to become a teacher and her journey of fitness in body and mind continues. For her, yoga is not just the daily practice on the mat, rather, the losing and finding of the mind and breath to come back to harmony.
Meena is a lawyer by profession and a mediation expert, trained with the ADR Group London. Mediation according to her is the best way to resolve disputes, even before they reach the courts. Meena loves teaching and has been teaching legal studies for classes 11th and 12th at Army Public School, Bangalore.
She says, “I have two similar goals and similar sounding ones too, separated by a “t”, meditation and mediation. One is spiritual and the other is legal. The end result of both is harmony”. Meena is a volunteer/
faculty with the Art of Living Foundation facilitating Art of Living Yoga and Happiness Programs.
Crissy Blanos MAT
Crissy has a MA in teaching and a BA in psychology and sociology from Rutgers University, New Jersey. This has lead her to teaching, instructional design, and becoming an overall observer of human patterns. Her current career at Middlesex County College as an instructional designer emerged from over 20 years of teaching, spanning pre-k through college.
Crissy spends her free time improving her knowledge of growth and brain development, mindset and mindfulness, and behavior and habits and how to incorporate them into relationships and life. She is active in her community as Secretary and Trustee on the Board of the Mary Jacobs Memorial Library Foundation.
She is passionate about what she does because it allows her to help others help themselves. Crissy lives by the motto: “Life is a work in progress and so am I.”
Jyotsna Vohra PhD
Jyotsna is Head of the Cancer Policy Research Center at Cancer Research UK, where she is responsible for ensuring that there is robust evidence to support policy calls that will improve cancer patients care and outcomes. Jyotsna established this center for the largest independent funder into cancer research, globally, in 2014.
As part of its remit her team has led the way providing evidence to show how population measures can reduce the number of preventable cancers that are caused by behaviors such as tobacco use, obesity and alcohol consumption. Her work has been included in key UK government health plans/strategies, consultations and presented at key government select committees not to mention nationally and internationally at key conferences and meetings.
Jyotsna has previously worked for the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health as their Research Manager and is passionate about ensuring equitable access to healthcare for all. She believes that if you have the ambition you will reach your goal and is a fan of the phrase “reach for the stars and you may reach the tree tops, but if you only ever reach for tree tops you will most likely hit the ground” and that’s how she like to tackle health disparities.
Nirmal Raja is an interdisciplinary artist living and working in Milwaukee, WI. Born in India, she received a BA in English Literature in India, a diploma in Graphic Design from the Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia and a BFA in Painting at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design. She received her MFA in painting and drawing at the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee.
She was a mentoring resident at RedLine Milwaukee, an urban arts incubator for over 6 years. Currently, she works out of her studio at Material Studios and Gallery in downtown Milwaukee.
She has participated in solo and group shows in the Midwest, nationally and internationally. She has recently received grants from the Wisconsin Arts Board and the Milwaukee Arts Board in support of an exhibition at Redline Milwaukee. She has also received grants for traveling her work to exhibitions across the nation from the Mary L. Nohl Suitcase Export Fund. Most often, her work deals with concepts of displacement, cultural negotiation and memory.
Usha Raman PhD
Usha Raman of University of Hyderabad, moved into academia after close to two decades as a freelance journalist and health communications practitioner. Her teaching interests include news reporting and feature writing, specialized writing (science, technology, environment and health), feminist media studies, science/health communication, and social impact of digital media. Her research has been in the fields of cultural studies of science, science and health communication, clinician-patient communication, children’s media, popular feminism and digital culture studies.
As a 2016 Fulbright Fellow, she spent a semester as a faculty researcher at the MIT Media Lab in Cambridge, USA. Usha is an honorary fellow of The George Institute for Global Health and a member of the ethics committees of L V Prasad Eye Institute and the Indian Institute of Public Health, Hyderabad. She is Editor of Teacher Plus, a monthly magazine for school teachers in India, and writes a fortnightly column on learning skills for The Hindu’s Education Plus titled Backpacker’s Guide, as well as a fortnightly review column on podcasts for The Hindu’s Sunday Magazine, Peace in a Pod. She is the author of Writing for the Media (Oxford University Press, 2009) and a volume of poetry, All the Spaces in Between (Writers Workshop, Kolkata, 2009), as well as a blog What are words worth? Usha obtained her Masters in Journalism and Ph.D. in Mass Communication from the University of Georgia, USA.
Gita Sinha MD MPH
Gita Sinha, MD MPH is a physician specialist in Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases and an independent consultant in clinical medicine and public health. She currently serves as a member of the executive team leading strategy and evaluation for a non-governmental organization dedicated to fighting India’s air pollution crisis.
Gita completed her undergraduate and medical degrees at Stanford University, Internal Medicine residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital/Harvard Medical School, and Infectious Diseases fellowship and Masters of Public Health degree from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, where she served as Assistant Professor of Internal Medicine/Infectious Diseases for over 10 years. Throughout her career, Dr. Sinha has led programs in clinical and public health education, and health services delivery for rural and urban populations in India as well as other South and Southeast Asian countries. Her roles have included Principal Investigator for an NIH-funded community clinical trial of HIV clinical services in rural Maharashtra, Visiting Faculty and Research Director in clinical medicine and public health in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, and co-Medical Director for a New Delhi-based primary health care start up company.
Her work-life motto is a quote by MLK Jr. which is present on her refrigerator as a reminder, “Never, ever be afraid to do what’s right, specially if the well-being of a human or an animal is at stake. Society’s punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way.” Born and raised in the United States, she divides her time between New Delhi and Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where she lives with her family.