Padma Venkataraman

Padma Venkataraman is one of India's most widely recognized

social activists. The daughter of India; former President,

Ramaswamy Venkataraman, this dynamic and socially

conscious humanitarian has been a leading figure for the past

25 years in her country to fight against leprosy and the

crippling social stigma that accompanies it.


In 2004, Padma joined forces with Rising Star Outreach to help

leprosy victims become thriving, self-sufficient people through

education, medical treatment, and micro-finance.  


Padma now heads up all of Rising Star’s micro-finance projects in

the leprosy colonies and, as a member of that organization's board

of directors, takes an active role in the policy decisions 

concerning Rising Star’s Subsidiary organization in India.  


Besides her work with leprosy in India, Mrs. Venkataraman was

nationally recognized for her work in the wake of the 2004 Tsunami

rebuilding infrastructure and providing micro-loans to families in the

affected fishing villages.  


She is a Vice President of the Women’s India Association, committee

member of the Srinivasa Gandhi Nilayam, a trustee of the Global

Cancer Concern, Patron of the Gandhi Peace Foundation, and an

honorary advisor to HOPE worldwide.


She is an active member of the Board of Directors of Rising Star

Outreach of India and the MITHRA national forum for leprosy



A graduate in Economics, Mrs. Venkataraman has received awards

from United Nations Food and Agricultural organization, HOPE

Worldwide, the Womens India Association, and an honorary

doctorate from Emmanuel College in Kota, India. She is married

and has two daughters.


Together with Rising Star Outreach, Padma continues to quietly

accomplish the great work she began in the leprosy colonies many

years ago. Among the Indian families devastated by leprosy, she is

known simply as , Amma, an honorary title meaning mother.



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