Profile of the Month | Pranav Kothari
He is fun, he’s cool and most importantly he wanted to join an organization with a purpose. Pranav has a fun personality making sure everyone is having a good time. In a nutshell he strives to help and give back to the community. Lights Camera Action, Lifestyle Editor Ruchi Mukherjee sat down over a cup of coffee for a lengthy conversation with NetIP President Pranav Kothari to understand the role of young professionals in this multicultural fourth largest city Houston, Texas.
This first generation immigrant of Indian descent moved to Houston with his family in the late 70s. He attended school in the Fort Bend Independent School District and ultimately graduated from the University of Houston. Caught by the entrepreneurial bug, today Kothari has two companies: Red Couch Interactive and CASTA Solutions. Red Couch Interactive is an interactive consulting company focusing on convergence of advertising, marketing, and technology. They specialize in branding, print, online media, web and application development, as well as TV and Radio commercials.
Tell us what inspired you to join NetIp?
To help spread the concept of giving without want. For a while I had been searching for an organization where the needs of the community got more attention than the needs of the people running it, and I think I have found that at NetIP Houston. I was encouraged by the enthusiasm and passion of the individuals involved and I thought I could work with them to really impact change within the South Asian community. The rest as they say is history.
What is your vision for the organization and what have you enjoyed most being part of this?
My vision for NetIP Houston is to be an engine of change within our community. By community I mean not only the South Asian community, but the greater Houston community in which we live. When I started I had defined my goal of success as “helping one person, any person”. Within the past year we have helped hundreds through fund raising, community service, professional development and personal mentoring. Regardless of how we’ve helped, I am very grateful that I have been a positive influence on our members and the people I have met through NetIP Houston. The greater joy though has been what I have learned from others during this journey. Giving is never a one way street, I am always amazed at what I get back.
As an Entrepreneur where do you think Houston is headed and your thoughts on the Indian American community.
I may be a little biased, but I think Houston is the city for the 21st century. Our diversity is our strength! The existence of numerous cultures provides opportunities for everyone as long as one is willing to go find them. With the energy industry and our medical center, Houston is going to flourish for a long time to come. The Indian community is a large part of this and it’s showing more and more in our daily lives. We have more South Asians in local politics than ever before with more young potentials aspiring to get into politics. You can see the increased influence and an acknowledgment of it, by the fact that the Hillcroft/59 area is officially called the Gandhi District.
With a passion like helping others Pranav feels very blessed being surrounded by wonderful people who have helped him get to this point in his life and he wants to pay it back. His trade mark is his friendly smile and his hat, with love for music and pool Pranav Kothari concludes this interview challenging a game. Lights Camera Action calls him the cool catch! To contact him and take the challenge visit netiphouston.org or contact him at [email protected].