Mohammed Salman Farshori is a Plano resident who loves his community. His two children have grown up in Plano schools, and his wife Amra is a speech pathologist for Plano ISD. Mohammed moved to the U.S. from India in 2004; he is now often a featured speaker and panelist at diversity conferences and workshops around the United States.
In Nov. 2016, he was invited to speak at the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders leadership roundtable. He served last year as the 52nd president of the India Association of North Texas (IANT). In its 55th year, IANT is one of the oldest Asian Indian organizations in the country and the oldest in Texas. Some of the events it organizes include the Anand Bazaar and India Day, both of which showcase the culture, cuisine and heritage of the Indian community.
Mohammed, what does the India Association of North Texas (IANT) do?
IANT was established in 1962 with the main objective of providing a platform to our community to fulfill its needs and goals for cultural and social engagement, and to help raise understanding and awareness of Indian cultural heritage and traditions across North Texas. From adopting a village during the Gujarat earthquake to bringing consular camps [that help Indians with official paperwork] to Dallas, IANT has always been there to support the Indian community.
All our events are inclusive. The Asian Indian community is the fastest growing population in the U.S. and we look at it as our responsibility to keep the community engaged.
What accomplishments through IANT are you most proud of?
We have engaged over 5,000 people in the last 17 months with our Consular camps. And last year I chaired the Anand Bazaar, which was attended by 10,000 plus people from all over North Texas.
Do you feel there are challenges for Indians living in Plano?
Overall Asian Indians living in Plano are engaged and continue to give back to the community, but I feel there is still a lot of opportunity for us to showcase our contributions to North Texas’ growing diversity and economy, and our culture and traditions to others.
With the tremendous growth of the Asian population across the country comes the need to better understand and address the unique issues facing our community. It is more important than ever to bring all communities together to have a dialogue with each other, to understand each other to create an inclusive culture.
What do you love most about living in Plano?
Diversity is inviting people to the party, inclusion is asking them to dance. I believe Plano does that. We have events that are for everybody. People can bring their whole selves to the community.India Association of North Texas >