HAF Receives 'Hindu Renaissance Award' at Annual Meet
March 31, 2009 (Fremont, California) --The Hindu American Foundation's (HAF) national staff meeting took on a festive atmosphere in Northern California this week, as the group became the first organization to receive the "Hindu Renaissance Award" on March 28. Annually presented by Hinduism Today magazine for nearly two decades, the award's inscription recognizes the Foundation "for its outstanding service in the Hindu cause through educating policy makers, defending religious freedom, joining interfaith efforts and bringing a professional approach to all that it does in advancing the core beliefs and values of the Sanatana Dharma [Hinduism]." Easan Katir, who represents the Hawaii based magazine in California, presented the award to the HAF staff, Board of Directors and Executive Council at an award reception held here.
"The publisher and editors of Hinduism Today congratulate HAF for its groundbreaking work for the benefit of the north American Hindu community, " said Katir soon after the ceremony. "HAF's intelligent response to the Hindu issues of the day assures us that the Hindu faith will continue to thrive."
According to its website, Hinduism Today annually awards the "Hindu of the Year" and Renaissance award to individuals who have "inspired, strengthened and reinvigorated Hinduism and its hundreds of millions of followers on a global basis." This was the first ever award to an organization. The largest circulation Hindu magazine in the United States, Hinduism Today is published by the Himalayan Academy and was founded by the late Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami.
"It is just an amazing feeling to receive this award from Hinduism Today, the pages of which inspired so much of our foundation's commitment to Hindu advocacy," exulted Mihir Meghani, M.D., co-founder and member of the HAF Board of Directors. "We're just thrilled that a week of grinding meetings, brainstorming and strategizing for our Foundation's leadership culminated in a wonderful night of recognition and celebration."
Foundation leaders are hoping that the award will bring more attention to the group's 2008 Hindu human rights report that was released just last week to wide acclaim in the U.S. House and Senate. Diminished revenue is also weighing heavily at the Foundation this year as a troubled economy takes it toll on most non-profits. "We believe that this award will generate a lot of attention and prove to be a shot-in-the-arm at this critical juncture," Meghani added.
See the online video of Hinduism Today's coverage of HAF in the April/May/June 2009 issue.