Laurel received her degree in International Studies from Texas State University with a minor in Spanish. Previously to living in Austin, Texas she lived and worked in Buenos Aires, Argentina for five years. She values the work that nonprofits bring to the community and is involved in several local nonprofits in varying capacities. Prior to joining the board, Laurel worked at GlobalAustin as an intern.
Immediate Past President
Deepak Burman is president and owner of Progressive Manufacturing Technology, Inc. He has worked in Hi-Tech for more than 25 years, moving to Austin 19 years ago. He is an active Rotarian, serving as president and board member of the Austin University Area Rotary Club, as a board member of both the Greater Austin Asian Chamber of Commerce (GAACC) and the Austin Area Manufacturing Association (ARMA), and a charter and board member of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE Global). Deepak mentors high school students in math and science, is an Austin Fit marathon training group coach, and has finished 11 full marathons and 23 half marathons.
Aditi Joshi serves a dual role of Project and Business Development Manager at WebTek Interactive, a Google Premier Partner based out of Austin & Salt Lake City.Upon arriving in Austin in 2006, she co-founded Redesigned Marketing which merged with Webtek in 2011. Originally from India, Aditi brings with her experience from being the Channel Program Sales Specialist & Channel Certification Program Manager for the Middle East and North Africa region for Hewlett Packard. Aditi received her Bachelor of Commerce Degree from the University of Mumbai, India followed by a MBA in Strategy and Marketing from the University of Wales, United Kingdom. She is fluent in English and Hindi and also has studied French and Arabic. She believes in equal opportunities and that bringing people together can only make the world a better place, two principles she incorporates in her everyday life. She is the President of the Austin Chapter of the United Nations Association ( the nonprofit arm of the United Nations), and the Secretary for the Asian Asian Community Healthcare Initiative. In 2018, she co-founded the JoshiMiscall Family Foundation to advocate for human & animal rights.
Brendan Cavanagh is the Peace Corps Recruiter for Central Texas, a position he has held for the past 3 years. His prior experience includes managing logistics for the American Embassy in Senegal, international development advocacy with Catholic Relief Services, and program management for Mercy Corps and The Carter Center. Brendan began his international career as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Cote d’Ivoire where he worked to improve public sanitation and access to potable water through projects such as health education, latrine construction, and water pump repair. Cavanagh extended his service for a third year to manage an upcountry Peace Corps office as Volunteer Leader.
Cavanagh earned his BA in International Relations from Mount St. Mary’s University in Maryland and his MA in International Development from The Fletcher School at Tufts University. Brendan now lives in Austin with his wife, with whom he served in the Peace Corps, and their 11 year old twins.
Issam 'Sam' Bakir
Issam "Sam" Bakir, a Certified Financial Planner, has been president o TNT Financial Services, Inc., since 1989, and president of TNT Asset Management, LLC since 2010. He holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from The University of Texas at Austin and worked in the Middle East as a consultant in the oil and gas industry. Returning to Texas, he made a career shift to the financial industry. Sam co-founded the Austin Associate Society of The Institute of Certified Financial Planners and served as president for three years. He has been a member of the Round Rock Momentum Club for over ten years, and serves/has served on the board of Goodwill Central Texas, The Greater Round Rock Community Foundation, Texas Asian Foundation, the Rotary Club of Austin - University Area, and the Greater Austin Asian Chamber of Commerce. He is a history buff as well as a world traveler.
Louise Lynch is a writer and lawyer experienced in multicultural and international spheres. She has provided legal services for Native American tribal governments, PBS, and HBO International, and negotiated with publishers all over the world on behalf of Time International Licensing. In recent years she has spent most of her time consulting with nonprofits on program design and grants acquisition. She has helped devise programs for international Fulbright Scholars and Austin’s refugee population, and has worked on program planning as a member of several nonprofit boards. She is also author of a novel for young adults (How I Wonder What You Are by L.M. Lynch, Knopf, 2001), about the importance of learning to accept “outsiders.” Ms. Lynch holds a B.A. from the University of Virginia, an M.A. from Yale University, and a J.D. from Yale Law School.