Smitha K. Prasad is a US-based Carnatic vocalist. A senior disciple of the renowned musician, Vidushi Vasanthamadhavi, Smitha performs regularly in the US and in India. She has been named a 2013 Regional Artist by the United Arts Council in North Carolina- the first Carnatic musician to have achieved this distinction. Smitha has been involved in various art initiatives and is a frequent speaker about the arts. A trained Bharatanatyam dancer, Smitha is on the faculty of Leela School of Dance where she directs the "Music for Dancers" program.
Mutuk Karpakakunjaram joined Leela Foundation as a board member since its inception in 2020. Mutuk is a technology entrepreneur and Founder of a tech startup based in Durham, NC. Mutuk has led large technology organizations in Fortune 100 companies such as IBM, Lenovo, Disney. Mutuk is passionate about music and dance and have been volunteering at Leela School of Dance for over five years. Mutuk brings his leadership and technology skills to support Leela Foundation grow and scale. Born and raised in India, Mutuk lives in Cary, NC for over 20 years with his wife and a daughter and a son. Mutuk holds an undergrad degree in Mathematics from India and a Masters in Business Administration from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
I am currently the Director of the Digital Communication Post-Baccalaureate Certificate Program and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at Meredith College in Raleigh, North Carolina. Prior to Meredith, I taught digital storytelling and television broadcasting classes at The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Campbell University. When not teaching, I work with organizations to produce for them quality media content. I have over 20 years of multimedia production and project management experience. I have developed web-based delivery of video, social media and other interactive content for domestic and international clients. Before transitioning to academia, I worked for CBS, WB, and Fox affiliates as a News Videographer and Director of Promotions. During my time in television, I interviewed more than one United States President, and I covered the Masters Golf Tournament, NCAA Athletics, Hurricane Floyd, 9/11, and many other events. Recently, I was hired by the Meridian International Center of Washington, D.C. to produce election related videos for the Foreign Press Service, a division of the US State Department, to be shown internationally. I also won a Georgia Associated Press Award for video, and in December 2020 was awarded a Fulbright Award to become a Fulbright Specialist.