Mr H.R. Shah
The Visionary

Country: USA

Designation: Life Member

India is privileged to have a number of selfless individuals who have made extraordinary contributions for the cause of humanity. One such individual is the well-known entrepreneur, philanthropist and community leader, Mr H.R. Shah, the Chairman & CEO of TV Asia, a coast-to-coast broadcaster.

Mr Shah’s association with the diaspora runs deep. He is a founding member of GOPIO as well as Past President and Trustee of the Federation of Indian Associations (FIA). It is a measure of his standing in the US that he is a member of the Board of Advisors of the Ellis Island-National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations (NECO). 


The charismatic Mr Shah has endeared himself as a close friend of the Indian community throughout the US, by serving the community for over 30 years. He has generously donated his time, energy and resources and is a pillar of the community, always supporting various social works, cultural, educational and related activities in the US and in India.

As the Chairman and Trustee of Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan (USA), the world famous institute of Indian culture, education, music and the arts, he has worked for the upliftment in lifestyle of Indians via education.

Mr Shah actively supports the Queens Child Guidance Center of New York, a group that has helped numerous children of all ethnic groups receive better healthcare and lead a better quality of life in the US. He is a director and supporter of Gift of Life, a US-based international humanitarian group that is dedicated to top quality health care and the general wellbeing of children everywhere.

He has firmly believed in the development of premium healthcare in India, becoming a founding director of the Krishna Heart Institute, a charitable institute, in Ahmedabad, Gujarat.

Several associations and institutions have appreciated his tremendous support. Prominent among them is the FIA in the New York Tri-State Region, which he has backed and been an integral part of, for more than two decades.

Mr Shah has been a long-time supporter of the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin (AAPI), the largest such organisation in North America, representing 50,000 desi physicians. Through his channel, TV ASIA, he actively promotes health-related activities of AAPI and its membership.

As part of his commitment to promoting the arts, music and culture, Mr Shah has teamed up with internationally acclaimed actor Anupam Kher to launch the first North American branch of India’s most sought-after acting school, Actor Prepares.

With TV Asia, Mr Shah is the first NRI to run a 24/7 TV station in North America. It is the first coast-to-coast television network broadcasting 24 hours a day, on satellite and cable for South Asians in the US. TV Asia was the only Network in North America to bring live coverage of the visit to the UN of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. This is part of TV ASIA's commitment to raise political awareness in the community. In order to keep Indian culture and heritage alive, especially for second generation NRIs, various topics regarding religious and social causes are covered in their entirety.

Mr Shah is director of the Indian American Center for Political Awareness. As its name suggests, the organisation's purpose is to promote stronger US-India ties and nurture a new generation of Indian Americans to become part of the political mainstream. The organization sponsors an internship programme where young Indian Americans work for Congressmen and Senators on Capitol Hill. They also serve with the White House and State Governors.

Mr Shah is the first NRI to own a chain store business anywhere in the world. A turnaround expert, he became prominent for rescuing Krauszer's Food Stores, New Jersey's largest chain having over 400 outlets. He took over the firm in 1991 and through his entrepreneurial skills gave the stores renewed statewide recognition. That acquisition saved over a thousand jobs. He also put hundreds of people from ethnic communities in the convenience store business, making them owners.

Conscious of the role politics plays in the future growth and potential of the Indian community in the United States, Shah has participated in the US political process at many levels and has made outstanding contributions to India-US relations. He has organised or supported awareness meetings for several prominent officials, including Governors, Senators, Congressmen and candidates for the US presidency, including Barack Obama.

He accompanied former US President Bill Clinton to India in the year 2000 and was with him again in 2001 in Gujarat for earthquake relief operations. In fact, TV Asia was the first South Asian media outlet to be invited by a US President to join the Presidential entourage on an overseas visit.

Mr Shah is the recipient of the prestigious 2005 Ellis Island Medal of Honor, which is bestowed only on those who display significant contributions to their own communities and to the US at large. He has received more than a hundred awards and citations from across the globe in serving ethnic American communities in different fields.

© Global Indian Diaspora — GOPIO Making an Impact | Published by: India Empire Publications

September 2012

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