Leadership Team

We at the Akshaya Patra Foundation strive to provide healthy and nourishing food to young children so that they stop worrying about hunger and can instead focus their budding energies towards becoming superheroes of their individual stories.

Aligning ourselves towards the goal of making zero-hunger possible, our team leaders ensure that they stay updated with all the social proceedings and ideate campaigns to help feed those in need. Our leaders with their excellent skill sets in finance, management and interpersonal relations ensure that The Akshaya Patra Foundation is run efficiently and effectively.

Another important aspect that our leaders pay attention to detail is monitoring the generous charitable donations from our supporters and ensuring that we use them judiciously. 

These donations help us implement the Mid-Day Meal Programme (PM-POSHAN) in government and government-aided schools, Anganwadi centres and also contribute to the numerous food drives that we organise to provide nutritious meals.

Charity donations from numerous philanthropists, volunteers and corporate donors have enabled us to feed about 2 million children on a daily basis. Currently, we implement the Mid-Day Meal Programme (PM-POSHAN) in over 22,367 educational institutes and achieving this feat would not have been possible without the guidance of our highly intellectual and principled Leadership team who watch over our daily proceedings.

Having said that, The Akshaya Patra Foundation has also attained the distinction of being one of the biggest NGOs in India, thanks to our top tier managing committee which has successfully ideated, planned and organised many projects.

Meet the members of The Akshaya Patra Foundation’s team leadership:

Shridhar Venkat
Chief Executive Officer (CEO)

Shridhar Venkat has over 25 years of professional experience and has worked with leading multinationals, including Philips, ABB and Webex Communications (now CISCO). Before he joined The Akshaya Patra Foundation in search of existential purpose in life, he was the VP – Sales at Webex Communications. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Management. He is an Eisenhower Fellow for innovation, a graduate of the Advanced Management Programme from the Wharton Business School and a recipient of the Mother Teresa Social Leadership Scholarship. At Akshaya Patra, he brings to the table strong people management and organisation skills. He believes that it is important to blend missionary spirit and professionalism to deliver value.

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Balaji M N
Chief Financial Officer (CFO)

Balaji MN joined The Akshaya Patra Foundation as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) to strategise and execute plans for the sustainability and growth of the organisation. He is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) and a certified member of ISACA, USA (CISA). He has over 25 years of experience. He has worked with reputed firms, such as Deloitte Haskins & Sells, PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and Moore Stephens, handling an impressive list of clients, which included Hindustan Unilever Limited, Britannia, Titan Company Limited, Honeywell India, Société Générale, Tata Coffee and Kalyan Jewellers.

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Saanil K Bhaskaran
Chief Operating Officer (COO)

Saanil has over 20 years of experience in setting up and managing strategic business units (SBUs) with P&L responsibility. An alumnus of IIM Bangalore, he has worked with firms like Reuters, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Capco and Symphony Services before joining The Akshaya Patra Foundation. At Akshaya Patra, he is instrumental in scaling and improving various functions, such as donor care, individual giving, sourcing, human resources, information technology and Social Business Ventures.

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Mukesh Tiwari
Chief Human Resources Officer

Mukesh Tiwari has two decades of experience in building and inspiring multicultural teams that often surpass organisational expectations and driving HR initiatives to achieve bottom-line outcomes while consistently promoting employee engagement and keeping organisational goals in mind. His professional experience includes being Chief Human Resource Officer for Abordare Technologies and stints at reputed organisations like Caterpillar India, Caterpillar China, ING India and HDFC. A goal-driven individual, he currently holds the position of Chief Human Resources Officer at The Akshaya Patra Foundation.

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Vinod Sudhakar
Head of Technology

Vinod is passionate about leveraging technology to drive measurable results and delivering exceptional business outcomes. He has over 22 years of experience in leading, managing and developing high-performing engineering teams. Before joining Akshaya Patra, he has held leadership roles in technology divisions of investment banks, such as JP Morgan, Goldman Sachs and Barclays IB. Vinod has a Master’s degree in science in Information Technology from NTU Singapore. He is on a mission to digitally enable Akshaya Patra to eliminate classroom hunger and deliver meaningful impact.

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Anant Arora
Chief Sustainability and Communication Officer

Anant heads the sustainability vertical aimed at creating momentum in The Akshaya Patra Foundation’s efforts to advance its mission. He comes with an experience of nearly three decades in the corporate and development sector and has worked in leadership roles for organisations like Bharti Airtel Ltd, Xerox Corporation and The Nudge Foundation. His last role before moving to the development sector was as the CEO for strategic enterprise business at Bharti Airtel Limited. Anant holds a degree in Industrial and Production Engineering and has gone through executive leadership programmes from INSEAD, Singapore and SOL, Babson College, Massachusetts, USA.

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Hari Sankar
Director - Audit

Hari Shankar heads The Akshaya Patra Foundation’s audit vertical as the director and drives auditing standards, legal issues, internal audits, internal controls and risk management. Hari Shankar brings with him over 23 years of experience in financial planning and analysis, accounting, treasury, legal and compliances, assurance and advisory services with a dedication to maintain high quality standards. He has previously worked with Eka Software Solutions Pvt. Ltd. As the VP – Finance. He has also worked at L&T Komatsu Ltd, GE Finance, Ocwen Financial Solutions and Deloitte. Hari Shankar is a Chartered Accountant (CA), ICWA and CPA of Australia.

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