OUR TEAM

We focus on developing School Leaders who can lead high-performing schools for underserved communities

We have reached over 1,400 schools and 5.3 lakh students across Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore and Hyderabad.

Gayatri Nair Lobo

Chief Executive Officer

Gayatri brings to ISLI a mix of over fifteen years of strategy consulting and education experience, having worked most recently at Dalberg Advisors. Before joining Dalberg, Gayatri was the Chief Operating Officer at Teach For India, and was part of the scale up of operations during its first six years. Gayatri has also previously worked at OC&C; Strategy Consultants as an engagement manager in Mumbai and London, working with clients in the media, telecom and retail sectors. Before OC&C;, Gayatri worked at Avalon Consulting as an Associate Vice President, on projects across multiple sectors like engineering, chemicals and logistics.

Gayatri has a Masters in Management Studies and a Bachelor’s in Commerce from Mumbai University. She enjoys travelling, music and spending time with her twin boys.

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Dimple Gujral

Chief Operating Officer

Dimple is a Chartered Accountant with over 25 years of professional experience. Dimple was a founder staff member of Teach For India and spent nearly a decade there as CFO; managing not just finance but also fund raising, technology and legal matters. Prior to TFI, Dimple has worked in the Travel and Logistics industry in organizations like Cleartrip.com, Kuoni Travel (Indi)Pvt. Ltd, FedEx etc.

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Shriram Tarawade

Marketing Lead

Shriram’s passion for Marketing Communication and his desire to contribute to the education space are two key reasons for his role as a Marketing Lead at ISLI. He is intrigued by the potential for work in the education industry and wants to spread the word about the cause of school leadership. Shriram leads the Marketing Strategy and Branding for ISLI.

After completing an MBA from the Institute of Management Technology, he worked as a Marketing professional in diverse industries.

Shriram is also a writer. He has authored one novel and regularly writes for online media & print magazines on socially-important issues.

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Nasreen Abdul Khader

Chief Programme Officer

Nasreen has nearly three decades of progressive qualitative experience across a wide gamut of functions in the field of education. Nasreen started her career as a school teacher. Further, she worked with companies like Educomp, where she coordinated the Intel Teach, Dell Youth Connect, World Links, and Teacher Training in Collaboration with Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan in the State of Andhra Pradesh. She has also been a Learning Expert with English Helper for close to five years.

Nasreen has a B. A (Hons) Degree in Sociology from Jesus and Mary College New Delhi.

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Kavita Rajagopalan

Chief Academic Officer

With more than a decade working with various education organisations in India, Kavita brings a deep understanding of the sector. At ISLI, she manages Curriculum, Montoring & Evaluation and Government-Partnership teams. Her previous roles were at Villgro Innovations Foundation and Menterra Venture Advisors where she led the organisations’ investments in education and skill training. She also led Villgro’s work in funding public-private partnerships in education. Prior to that, she was with Teach For India where she first managed training for Fellows across Mumbai and Pune sites, and was subsequently the Senior Programme Manager in Pune.

A closet introvert, Kavita is happiest with her books somewhere on a mountaintop. She loves to travel and watch cop shows.

Kavita has a Master’s in Education from Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education and a Bachelor’s in International Studies from the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill.

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Mamta Naidu

City Head, Pune

Mamta has over thirteen years of experience in educational services. She has worked with varied customers across industry domains. Prior to joining the ISLI team, she worked with Cambridge English Language Assessments for over nine years & four years with London Chamber of Commerce & Industry. Her career span includes work experience in India and the USA.

With a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy, Mamta believes it’s important to have strong career goals but also insists on enjoying every step towards that goal. She loves to interact with people across the spectrum.

Mamta is open to change and believes her roots are where her family is. She loves to explore new places, cultures and food. But at the end of the day, she enjoys quiet evenings with loved ones and of course, her Labrador curled up at her feet.

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Rohit Thapa

Programme Lead, Pune

Rohit completed his Master’s in Business from the University of Hyderabad. Prior to joining ISLI, he worked as a Fellow in Teach For India. During his stint, he contributed to the holistic development of students by encouraging academic gains, fostering leadership skills, values, and social abilities. He has also previously worked in data analysis and consulting for Accretive Health.

He has been a part of ISLI since 2016. As a city programme manager and then an Alumni senior manager, he has been an active member in the leadership development of over fifty school leaders.

Rohit has also been a part of projects in various capacities like marketing, strategy formulation, quality analysis, campaign leadership, project coordination, volunteer management, etc.

When he is not working, Rohit likes singing, socratic dialogues, cycling, and running marathons.

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Sushant Nambiar

Programme Lead, Hyderabad

After playing competitive tennis for eight years, Sushant began his first stint in education as a ‘Teach For India’ fellow, teaching sixty students in a slum area of Secunderabad. As a teacher, he organized a number of projects designed for students to pursue their individual interests and talents. Inspired by the growth and enthusiasm that his students showed, he resolved to impact a greater number of students in the country. In 2016, he joined ISLI and has since trained over a hundred school leaders. His vision is to see a national culture wherein the brightest minds of the country help educate marginalized children.

Sushant has a master’s degree from the London School of Economics.

He loves games of all kinds, physical-fitness, and reading books on detective fiction, systems thinking, history and psychology.

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Bharath Sequeira

City Head, Bengaluru

Bharath has over nine years of experience in the Education Sector. He began this journey by teaching Science for Middle Years Programme of the International Baccalaureate Curriculum at Indus International School, Hyderabad. After this, he pursued the Teach for India fellowship which helped him gain insights into the grassroots of the Indian Education system. As a Programe Manager and Partner Engagement Manager at Thermax Foundation- Leadership Institute for Teachers, he worked towards designing and providing an in-service professional development training for teachers at Municipal schools in Pune.

Bharath is passionate about relationship building and cares deeply about people. He loves cooking, spending time with friends, regular exercise and outdoor games.

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Sai Pramod Bathena

City Head, Hyderabad

Pramod is an Engineer by profession but chose social engineering as a career. He is passionate about providing quality learning opportunities for students from the marginalized sections of the society. He is a Teach For India alumnus and has taught in a slum school for two years to provide high-quality value-based education to children. He has over seven years of experience in the filed of education and skill developement. He has worked in diverse profiles – Assistant professor in Engineering college, trainer and coach for civil services and competetive exams aspirants, leading yound leadership camps, etc. He is very passionate about creating collaborative platforms that offer opportunities for learning and problem solving. Pramod is interested in politics & public policy and loves to read articles & research works presenting the developments in contemporary politics.

Pramod has an MS in Digital Radio from Telecom ParisTech, France, and holds a Masters in Engineering from College of Engineering Guindy, Anna University.

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Rahul Raina

Programme Lead, Hyderabad

As a Programme Lead, Rahul supports and manages the delivery of the ISLI programme to eighty schools in Hyderabad. His previous experience includes setting up and running a school in rural Maharashtra as a school leader. Recently, he has coached around forty school leaders as a programme manager at ISLI, wherein he worked with three cohorts of school leaders in building their skills and driving school-wide changes through them.

His interest lies in capacity building, early childhood education and in understanding what motivates adults to learn. When he is not working, Rahul enjoys creating things from waste and also finding things to use a glue gun on.

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Aswin Jayakumar

Programme Lead, Bengaluru

As a Programme Lead in Bangalore, Aswin supports the implementation of the ISLI fellowship programme in schools across the city.

Aswin started his career in one of India’s software giants as a Systems Engineer. Five years later, he took the step into the education sector as a Teach For India fellow, teaching his wonderful 3rd and 4th-grade children at a Government School in Whitefield, Bangalore.

When not working you can find him playing football, riding his bike or gaming on his Xbox One.

Rahul Subbaraman

National Relationship Manager

As National Relationship Manager, Rahul works to engage school leaders from around the country to join the ISLI City Fellowship. He also works to build new relationships with like-minded individuals and organizations in the education space. Rahul has previously worked with NIIT, NIS Sparta, and Pearson India.

Rahul is a passionate sales professional, who also loves to read.

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Manvi Arora

Head, Strategic & Government Partnership

Manvi heads the Strategy and Government Relations vertical. She is responsible for identifying opportunities as well as cultivating relationships with government and other strategic partners to expand ISLI’s reach. She has been with ISLI since 2015, working in different capacities in the programme and academic vertical. Prior to ISLI, she was a Teach for India fellow where she taught grade 1 and grade 2 in a government school. Manvi also experimented with technology when working with Cognizant Technology Solutions and Infosys.

Apart from her quest of improving the education system in India, Manvi spends her free time in gym and loves watching Bollywood movies.

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Nikita Nichani

Manager, Human Resources

As part of the Operations team, Nikita supports ISLI in all HR related functions. Before joining ISLI, Nikita worked in the field of Credit Monitoring with a bank for four years. Her earlier work included content writing and work with a skills-assessment company.She holds a Master’s degree in International Business from Monash University, Australia.

In her free time, Nikita is usually learning to paint. She loves traveling, watching movies and TV series, and spending time with her family.

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Akanksha Ghai

National Alumni Lead

Akanksha has been with ISLI since 2015 working in the programme and strategy teams. She currently leads the alumni programme for ISLI and focuses on long-term sustainability of our city fellowship programme.

After starting her career as a banker in 2009, Akanksha joined Teach for India in 2013 and decided to continue working in k12 education space. She backpacks and writes poetry to reconnect with herself.

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Baidurya Sen

Curriculum Head

Upon completion of his engineering degree, Baidurya nosedived into the education sector by joining Teach for India, Pune where he taught students from primary grades. Thereafter, he led a residential school for a Mahadalit community (Mushars) in rural Bihar.

He has been with ISLI in different capacities since 2015 and currently heads the Curriculum team. He and his team designs content for the city programme and the state partnerships.

He loves traveling, writing poetry and reading Neruda, and listens to Led Zeppelin and Gundecha brothers in his spare time.

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Jennifer Mendonca

Manager, Development

Jennifer Mendonca works as the Development Manager at ISLI. Her roles include fundraising and donor management. Prior to joining ISLI, Jennifer worked at Pratham Council for Vulnerable Children (PCVC) as Head – Programme Review & Management. She has worked in the field of Child Rights and Protection primarily in Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan on the issues of child labor and trafficking. Jennifer completed her Masters in Elementary Education from the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai.

Over the weekends, she volunteers with an organization that practices organic kitchen farming. She is an avid reader, yoga lover and amateur traveler.

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Pooja Sharma

Programme Lead, Delhi

As a Programme Lead in Delhi, Pooja supports the implementation of the ISLI fellowship programme in schools across Delhi and Haryana.

She worked in a high-income private school in Delhi before joining the Teach for India fellowship. The fellowship motivated her to explore education opportunities for the underprivileged and a school leader’s role in the effective functioning of a school.

Pooja holds a Master’s degree in Environmental Sciences from TERI University and a Bachelor’s in Education from Delhi University.

In her free time, she can be found doodling, ordering dessert or traveling to the mountains.

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Advisory Board

Vandana Goyal

Former CEO, The Akanksha Foundation

Vandana joined Akanksha Foundation in 2006 as a representative on the McKinsey team that developed the blueprint for Teach for India. Prior to her current role, she was a Director of Akanksha’s School Project, which seeks to pioneer the charter school movement in India. She began her career as a teacher and then as a programme developer and manager. She spent four years with Citizen Schools, a Boston-based non-profit organization dedicated to changing the life trajectory of underprivileged urban children. Vandana graduated from Claremont McKenna College with a degree in Economics.

Ashish Dhawan

Founder & Chairman, Central Square Foundation(CSF)

Ashish worked for twenty years in the investment management business and ran one of India’s leading private equity funds, ChrysCapital. In June 2012, he left his full-time role at ChrysCapital to start CSF. Ashish serves on the board of several non-profits including Akanksha Foundation, 3.2.1 Education Foundation, Teach For India, Centre for Civil Society, Janaagraha, India School Leadership Institute, and Bharti Foundation. Ashish is an MBA with distinction from Harvard University and a dual bachelor’s (BS/BA) holder with Magna Cum Laude honors from Yale University. He is on the India Advisory Board of Harvard and a member of Yale’s Development Council.

Azad Oommen

Co-Founder, Global Schools for Leaders(GSL)

Azad Oommen was the founding Executive Director of the Central Square Foundation (CSF), an Indian venture philanthropy fund that invests in organizations looking to improve the quality of student learning. He has worked extensively in the field of leadership development, having run the Clinton Fellowship for Service in India, the Clinton Democracy Fellowship for City Year in South Africa, and the Mickey Leland Hunger Fellows programme for the Congressional Hunger Center in the US. Azad has a Master’s degree in Public Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University and a Bachelor’s degree in International Economics from Georgetown University.

Deepak Satwalekar

Former Managing Director, HDFC- Standard Life Insurance

Deepak was the Managing Director and CEO of HDFC Standard Life Insurance Co. Ltd. Earlier, he served as the Managing Director of Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC). He has been a consultant to the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme (HABITAT). Deepak is a recipient of the ‘Distinguished Alumnus Award’ from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay. He is on the Advisory Council of IIT Bombay and has chaired and been a member of several expert groups related to industry, government and the Reserve Bank of India. Deepak holds a degree in Technology from IIT Bombay and an MBA from The American University, Washington D.C.

Yogesh Mahansaria

Promoter, Yogesh Agencies & Investment Private Limited

Yogesh started his career in 1993 as an industrial trainee at Balkrishna Industries Ltd. Mr. Mahansaria recently stepped down as Founder & CEO of Alliance Tyre Group & presently manages his Family Office. He is an active member of YPO (Young President’s Association) (Mumbai Chapter) and also serves as Director on the Boards of Avendus Capital Pvt Ltd, FSN E-Commerce Ventures Pvt Ltd ,321 Education Foundation. He has been well recognized through numerous awards – Forbes Next Gen Entrepreneur of the Year 2014, EY Entrepreneur of the Year – Manufacturing 2014, Economic Times Top 40 under 40 Business Leader.

Our values build our team’s foundation. They help us stay aligned and do better every day.

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We are a part of something bigger than ourselves

We are committed and dedicated to our mission. We feel pride in our work and take ownership of our organization. Our purpose motivates us to contribute to our collective goal every single day.