Indian American and South Asian origin innovators and change makers dominated the Healthcare category in Forbes latest “30 Under 30” list released Jan. 3.
More than a third of the Healthcare honorees — 12 people for 11 positions, to be exact — were of Indian or South Asian origin.
All told, the 2017 “30 Under 30” list honored 600 people or organizations in 20 separate industries, with at least 45 of them of Indian or South Asian origin.
Among the Healthcare industry “30 Under 30” recipients were Prarthna Desai, Vivek Kopparthi, Shaun Patel, Ashwin Pushpala, Sudhakar Nuti, Srilakshmi Raj, Rohan Suri, Archit Bhise, Vinayak Ramesh, Ankur Aggarwal, Hareesh Ganesan, Rahul Jain and Nick Valilis.
Desai, 27, a graduate of MIT, leads operations at Zipline. She left her Harvard grad school program to use drones to get medication to people in the developing world. In her operations role at Zipline, she is leading efforts to integrate the medicine-delivery-by-drone service with the healthcare system in Rwanda.
Kopparthi, 27, is a co-founder of NeoLight. A graduate of Arizona State University and Anna University, Kopparthi founded NeoLight to help combat jaundice, which is responsible for 50 percent of hospital readmissions for newborns and 10 infant deaths per hour, according to Forbes. NeoLight has developed a phototherapy device that is portable for use at home. The company is also working on a second tool to treat infant hypothermia.
A graduate of the University of Michigan, earning a bachelor’s and medical degree, the 28-year-old Patel is the orthopedic surgery chief resident at Harvard Medical School. His company, OrthoNinja, aims to streamline communication between doctors by creating a mobile app that allows doctors to consult with one another. In its first year, it enabled 200 consultations from around the country.
The 28-year-old Pushpala is the founder of Sano. Pushpala thinks traditional preventive health is "fundamentally wrong" in its approach, Forbes said. Sano combines personalized health with a Fitbit approach. It has raised $18.75 million to develop a wearable sensor that, instead of counting steps, assesses things like blood sugar so users can see the impact of dietary changes on individual bodies. Pushpala has multiple degrees from the University of Pennsylvania.
Nuti, 25, is a medical candidate at Yale University, where he earned his bachelor’s. Nuti studies variations in the quality of healthcare in the U.S., an effort that has resulted in multiple publications in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Forbes said.
A postdoctoral fellow at Cornell University, Raj, 29, a graduate of Oxford and Cambridge universities, has been doing medical research since she was 14 years old. She currently works as a population geneticist focused on how evolutionary adaptations have elevated or lowered different groups' susceptibility to chronic disease.
Suri, at just 17, is the founder of Averia Health Solutions. After his brother suffered a misdiagnosed concussion, he decided to develop an improved, less expensive concussion test. The company makes an eye-tracking device that uses a headset and the practitioner's phone. Since June, his tool has diagnosed 60 concussions.
Bhise, 25, and Ramesh, 25, co-founded Wellframe. The company sells insurance companies a mobile app that helps patients manage complex sets of conditions. The insurance company also gets a dashboard that helps them stay in close touch with patients. Thus far, the company has received $10 million in investments.
Aggarwal, 27; Ganesan, 26; Jain, 26; and Valilis, 27, co-founded TowerView Health. After he was diagnosed with cancer, Valilis was surprised by how difficult it was to remember to take his pills. So he teamed up with his college roommates to found TowerView Health, which sells a smart pill box with custom trays of medication, Forbes said.
Outside of the Healthcare industry, dozens of other Indian and South Asian origin innovators were recognized in many of the 19 other industries.
Arun Gupta, 28, a co-founder of Grailed, was honored in the Art & Style category.
Nikil Viswanathan, 29, co-founder of Down to Lunch; Saswant Panda, 28, co-founder of LiveLike VR; and Ajay Yadav, 29, founder of Roomi, were chosen in the Consumer Technology category.
Ben Aneesh, 26, co-founder of Cover, was named in the Retail and eCommerce category.
Anish Abuwala, 29, portfolio manager at Caxton Associates LP; Raja Bobbili, 29, analyst at Abrams Capital; Akshay Goyal, 28, vice president at Starwood Capital; Dhruv Maheshwari, 28, research analyst at Point72 Asset Management; and Niraj Shah, 29, senior associate at RedBird Capital Partners, were among the Finance honorees.
Varun Sivaram, 27, acting director of Energy Security and Climate Change of the Council on Foreign Relations, was named among the Law and Policy recipients.
Prahasith Veluvolu, 21, co-founder of Mimir, was among the Education category recipients.
Karan Jani, 28, a doctoral candidate at Georgia Tech; and Arun Sharma, 26, a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard Medical School, were among the Science category recipients.
Amrit Robbins, 27, co-founder of Axiom Exergy; Nishant Garg, 29, and Jimit Shah, 28, co-founders of Flow Labs; Samir Ibrahim, 28, CEO of SunCulture; Maanasa Mendu, 14, student at Mason High School; and Ravi Kurani, 29, co-founder of Sutro, were among the Energy recipients.
The Social Entrepreneurs category included Aditya Agarwalla, 23, co-founder of Kisan Network; and Teju Ravilochan, 29, co-founder of Unreasonable Institute.
Alex Mathews, 22, and Param Shah, 21, co-founders of Fusiform; Anurag Garg, 29, CEO of Dattus; Neha Gupta, 28, business operations at DAQRI; and Gaurab Chakrabarti, 28, co-founder at Solugen Inc., were the honorees in the Manufacturing Industry category.
Akshay Khanna, 29, vice president of strategy for the NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers, was an honoree in the sports category.
Mansi Jayakumar, 29, global director of innovation at Y&R; and Aniq Rahman, 29, president of Moat, were honorees in the Marketing and Advertising category.
Venture Capital category honorees included Nimay Mehta, 28, partner at Lead Edge Capital.
And Ian Purkayastha, 24, founder of Regalis Foods, was recognized in the Food and Drink category.
No Indian or South Asian origin individuals were selected in the Game, Music, Hollywood & Entertainment, Enterprise Technology and Media categories.
The sixth annual version of the list "is the most definitive gathering of today’s leading young change-makers and innovators in the U.S.," Forbes said.
It offers an annual opportunity to embrace the optimism, inventiveness and boldness of youth, it added.
The honorees, all under 30 years of age, challenge the conventional wisdom and rewrite the rules for the next generation of entrepreneurs, entertainers, educators and more.
"They are a passionate and formidable bunch, and for good reason. Their goal is nothing short of breaking the status quo and transforming the world," Forbes noted.
Forbes’ “30 Under 30” list was originally inspired by the rising tide of young entrepreneurs, mostly in the tech business, making big waves and earning even bigger bucks and world-wide followings.
"It’s clear that never before has youth been such an advantage. Millennial founders and funders, brand builders and do-gooders aren’t waiting around for a career bump up the establishment ladder," the publication added. "Their ambitions are way bigger — and perfectly suited to the dynamic, entrepreneurial and impatient digital world they grew up in."