Friday, March 16, 2012

Sudha Murthy

Sudha Murthy is one of those individuals with a thirst for excellence and this is very evident in the various spheres of interests in which she is involved. She was born on August 19, 1950 in Shiggaon in Karnataka. She was raised by her parents and maternal grandparents and her childhood memories and experiences proved to be the inspiration of her first book, How I Taught my Grandmother and Other Stories. She is an alumnus of B.V.B College of Engineering & Technology, Hubli. She studied Electrical Engineering. She topped in Engineering in the State of Karnataka and she was also awarded a Gold Medal by the Chief Minister of Karnataka. She pursued her Master’s degree from the Indian Institute of Science.

Further Sudha Murthy went on to work with the former TATA Engineering and Locomotive Company or TELCO (now called Tata Motors). In fact she was the first female engineer to be hired at Tata Motors! She has always lived life by her own rules. She had written a postcard to the former chairman of TELCO, JRD Tata about the ‘gender bias’ prevalent in the firm and she was called for a special interview and hired by the organization. She lived in Pune from 1974 – 1981 until she moved to Mumbai. She went on to financially support her husband, N.R. Narayana Murthy to start Infosys.

Sudha Murthy is also a known philanthropist; she is the chairperson of the Infosys Foundation. She is on a drive to provide all government schools in Karnataka with computer and library facilities. She teaches Computer Science. Currently, she also heads Catamaran Ventures, which is the seed investor firm for Infosys. She has also been highlighted as one of the most successful investment managers in the world. She is famous for her simple middle-class lifestyle. She has authored How I Taught My Grandmother To Read & Other Stories, Wise & Otherwise: A Salute to Life, The Bird with Golden Wings, Gently Falls the Bakula, Dollar Bahu, Mahashweta, Old Man and HisGod, Magic Drum & other Favourite Stories, Fasal Cut, A Wedding in Russia, and Sweet Hospitality. Her books have been translated into 15 languages. Her stories are a reflection of her beliefs and thoughts on donations, hospitality and understanding.

Sudha Murthy has also been a recipient of several awards. In 2004, the Sri Raja-Lakshmi Foundation in Chennai awarded her with the Raja-Lakshmi Award. It was an acknowledgment for her ‘outstanding contribution to social work’. In 2006, the Government of India awarded her with the Padma Shri for her philanthropic initiatives. She has also earned an LL.D (Doctor of Laws) degree for her contribution to working towards legal education and scholarship in India.

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