Everyone has an achievement or two in their life. If you don’t have one, you better strive to have it. I have some instances which I call it an achievement and like to share it.
 
Family’s First Graduate
Whether it’s USA, India or any part of the world, getting a college education and becoming a graduate is a life changing event. If its engineering degree things are much more complicated both for the family and person doing it. Going back to the year 1992, getting a seat in a government engineering college in India is very competitive and challenging one. It is the same case even today as well but money talks the talk today. If you get the seat and successfully complete the degree with a job, that’s great accomplishment. I was fortunate to make it happen breaking all odds by fighting all natural forces working against me with great support from my parents. I am Proud to be the first person to get the college degree even better engineering degree in my family tree. Following my footsteps, now we have few engineers and graduates in our family and I am really happy to lead the way.
 
Coming to America
Did you watch Eddie Murphy movie, “Coming to America”? It is real good movie. Eddie Murphy belongs to King family and comes to America to find a good girl to marry. How he struggles in life to realize his dream is the shorthand version of the story.  On the other hand,  I never dreamed to come to America, it just happened in my life. But I am glad it happened because I was at the right place, at the right time doing the right thing which sent me to America in 1999. I learnt lot of things in my life coming to America and met so many wonderful people. I am really grateful for it.
 
Toastmasters
It is one of the best thing to happen in my life. Toastmaster is an International organizations for communication and leadership improvement by giving speech to overcome stage fear and taking roles to build your leadership skill. I attended my first Toastmaster meeting when I worked for DEC/Compaq in Boston, Nov 2000. I was immediately attracted by the atmosphere and how it worked. I joined as a member in the club after few guest appearances and gave my first Icebreaker speech on Jan 10, 2001 about myself. I performed OK. Then I am aimed to finish the CTM(Competent Toastmasters) by End of March 2002.
 
As I planned completed my CTM by 21st March 2002 and became a Competent Toastmaster. I am really happy about my performance.I completed and achieved CL in 2004 and ATM-B July 2005 finally after 2 years. Its lot of effort and hard work. I completed my ACS in May 2013 after a long gap and working towards ACG award. Now I am die hard fan of Toastmaster with ACS(Advance Communicator Silver) and CL award.
 
Running Boston Marathon
I took up running more seriously in 2001. I participated in my first 5k competition and won 3rd price for my age group. I motivated me to run more. I continuously improved my performance participated in 5miles, 10K races and finally to half marathon. I completed my first half marathon in 1hr:41mins. I decided to the marathon and started training. I got bib for Boston Marathon from Compaq(Digital was taken over by Compaq in 1999) lottery system. I ran my first Marathon Apr 15, 2002 and completed successfully without stopping or walking anywhere in just 3 hr 41mins. It is a great milestone to achieve for first time runner.
 
It was a great feeling to finish it. Click here to know more about it. I have done other half marathons. I am not running anymore because of foot problems. Running was a good sport which allowed me to talk to myself and reflect upon good and bad things. I love to do again if I get another chance but don’t want to risk and worse my foot problem.
 
Ballroom Dancing and Lindy Hop
I joined Ballroom Dancing when I worked and started developing it. I become an good Ballroom and Latin dancer after taking private classes. I also paid more interest toward Lindy Hop dancing. It is so much fun; love dancing all day.
 
Financial Planning Certification
I always been passionate about finance and money matters. I like to be frugal and money smart. I never buy anything without prior planning and research. I am a self made investor in stocks and real estate. I like to share experience on money matters to others so started my moneyreallymatters.com website in Jan 2008. I also hosted radio on money matters in Houston local radio. With internet flocked by too many bloggers blogging about money saving idea, I felt the need to become authoritative enough for people to listen and learn from my findings. So I decided to take on new challenge which is to get CFP certified. I signed for CFP course online with Boston University in Nov 2008 and completed my CFP course in Jun 2010. Even though I am basically a software professional, I was eager to learn more about finance industry to gain knowledge and also to help others. My next step is to prepare for CFP certification and get it certified. I signed with Dalton Review to prepared for the from Aug 2010 and took the exam in Nov 2010 and passed in first attempt. I got the result in Jan mid that I passed successfully. My goal now is to gain experience to get the final certification. 
 
Texas Realtor
I have been involved in Real estate since 2007 when I bought my first rental property. I mentored few friends by sharing my investing experience in real estate and wrote about it starting from finding right property, buying it for right price, managing it properly and making cash cow out of it. Since I have gained some experience, I thought of putting it to use by getting the Realtor license. So I signed up for the mandatory courses, completed them in 2 weeks, applied for exam, appeared and passed by scoring 90%. I got the Broker sponsorship to get my Realtor license and finally received my license on Mar 31,2011. As of Dec 2015, five years of being a Realtor, I successfully completed around 60 transactions with 25 millions dollar worth of transaction which is a good amount for a part-timer. I continue and plan to help out more friends and families on getting their dream home or investing for their future.
 
2012 District 56 Toastmasters Fall District Champion

My recent accomplishment wa winning the First Place in District 56 – Houston – 2012 Fall Conference Humorous Speech competition to become 2012 Fall District Champion. In Toastmasters, every year they do competitions among members where they progress from club level to area level(4-5 clubs form an area) to Division level (4-5 areas form Division) to District Level (4-8 divisions form District) to Region level to International level. Only International Speech competition in Spring goes to International level and other competitions stops at District level. I started my journey at HESS club defeating 2 other opponents and later won the O-11 Area competition to progress to Division O and to the District 56 competition held on Nov 17th and won the championship beating 7 other contestants. A guy who can’t even speak a full sentence properly in English 10 years ago was able to win a District Humorous Championship by defeating many other great speakers is a great achievement. Check out the speech in Youtube channel.

 
Small Business Owner

It has always been my ambition to start some retail business in America which will also accommodate my wife’s interest. So we been looking out for the right business which should be new and bring a difference to the community.

May be I should call it has a coincidence or God’s sign to find out about Great Harvest Bread when we visited my cousin Prakash in Columbus, OH during 2013-2014 winter vacation. They introduced us to the Great Harvest Bread and we totally hooked on it. I immediately started researching and signed the franchise contract in few months and constructed the new store and opened in Jan 23, 2015. It’s going to be one year this year (2016) and we been through a lot this past year. I learnt a lot from the past year owning a retail business. Every day is a new day!! It’s nothing set in stone and cannot expect the same every day. Just need to work hard and work towards gaining the customer trust and provide quality service to bring them back to the store. I hope to make this new journey destined towards a success but just have to wait and see…

 
Positions Served:
I was fortunate enough to serve and make a difference in the community in different levels. It all started when I was teenager.
1. President of Children Welfare Association: 1985-1990
2. Secretary of Computer Science Department: 1995-1996
3. Board Member of New England Tamil Sangam: 2000 – 2002
4. President and VP of various Toastmaster Clubs: 2002 – Till Date
5. President of Home Owners Association: 2005 – 2007