Visionary CSR Leader: Rajashree Birla, Aditya Birla Group

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Mrs. Birla is regarded as an icon in the CSR domain, and is a role model for all of us in India and beyond. Mrs. Birla through her visionary leadership has made a difference to the lives of millions.

The renowned philanthropist Rajashree Birla is the Director on the Board of all the major Aditya Birla Group of Companies: viz., Aditya Birla Nuvo, UltraTech Cement Ltd., Grasim and Hindalco. She is also the Director of the Aditya Group’s International Companies in Thailand, Egypt, Indonesia and Philippines. Besides, she is the Chairperson of the Aditya Birla Center for Community Initiatives and Rural Development, which oversees the corporate social responsibility programs and projects of the Aditya Birla Group (ABG) across thirty companies.

  • Mrs. Rajashree Birla was conferred the Padma Bhushan by the Government of India for her exemplary contribution in the area of social work. The Padma Bhushan is among the highest civilian awards in the Republic of India.

Born and raised in Madurai, Mrs. Birla studied arts, graduating from the Loretto College at Calcutta.

Rajashree Birla’s exemplary leadership in corporate philanthropy is significantly felt by the extent of the reach of the Aditya Birla Centre for Community Initiatives and Rural Development.

  • As Chairperson of the Aditya Birla Centre for Community Initiatives and Rural Development, the apex body responsible for development projects, Mrs. Birla oversees the Group’s social and welfare driven work across 30 companies.

In the ten years that she has been spearheading the activity, the Aditya Birla Group has enlarged its scope of activities, based on an intensive assessment of the needs of the communities. These encompass innovative projects such as providing the rural youth with a chance to shape their future through sustainable employment schemes, education and training, making safe drinking water easily accessible and women empowerment programmes.

Other equally significant areas of the community work done under her stewardship includes reaching out to physically impaired people, espousing social causes like widow remarriages and dowry-less marriages.

In the sphere of education, Mrs. Birla stewards the Aditya Birla Scholarships, instituted over four years ago to spawn leaders for tomorrow, through fostering academic excellence at the premier IITs, BITs (Pilani) and IIMs.

In recognition of the exemplary work done by her and for making a qualitative difference to the lives of the less privileged, Mrs. Birla received “The Economic Times’ Corporate Citizen 2001-2002 Award” on behalf of the Group. The Rotary Club of Bombay conferred “The Citizen of Bombay Award 2003”, while the Rotarians in Action named her for “The Seva Shiromani Award”, and the Archana Trust honoured her as “The Woman Achiever – 2001”. “The Pride of India” Award was bestowed on her by the Rotary Clubs of Mulund – 2004.

She is the Chairperson of the Advisory Board of the University of Kanchipuram. She is Member of the Advisory Board of “The Research Society For The Care, Treatment and Training of Children in Need of Special Care”, Mumbai, and also a Trustee of “Population First”, India, and of BAIF Development Research Foundation, Pune. Mrs. Birla is a Member of the prestigious Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanams Development Advisory Council.

Mrs. Birla is a Member of the Executive Committee of the Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti from September 2003 to September 2006.

As a patron of arts and culture, Mrs. Birla heads the “Sangeet Kala Kendra”, as its President.

Member on other Boards:

  • Member on the Advisory Board of The Research Society For the Care, Treatment and Training of Children in Need of Special Care, Mumbai.
  • Member on the Advisory Council of Population First.
  • Member of Tirumala Tirupathi Devasthanams Development Advisory Council.

Awards conferred on Smt. Rajashree Birla :

  • “Women Achievers’ Award” for Social Work by the Archana Trust, Mumbai in 2001 and 2002.
  • The Economic Times’ “Corporate Citizen of the Year, 2001-2002”.
  • “The Seva Shiromani Award, 2003” by Rotarians in Action.
  • “Citizen of Bombay Award 2003” from the Rotary Club of Bombay.
  • “The Pride of India” Award bestowed by the Rotary Clubs of Mulund in 2004.

A selective list of Foundations on which Mrs. Birla is a Trustee:

  • Anand Ashram Trust, Mumbai
  • G.D.Birla Medical Research & Education Foundation, Mumbai
  • Jayashree Charity (1962) Trust, Kolkata
  • Vasavadatta Foundation, Mumbai
  • Neerja Foundation, Mumbai
  • Rajashree Foundation, Kolkata
  • Aditya Birla Foundation
  • Aditya Vikram Birla Memorial Trust
  • Breach Candy Hospital & Research Centre, Mumbai
  • Population First
  • BAIF Development Research Foundation, Pune

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