- Founder & Chairman, POA Educational Foundation
- President & CEO, dgMarket International Inc.Board of Governors,
- Sheridan Institute of Technology & Advance Learning
- Entrepreneur in Residence, School of Business, Centennial College
- Advisory Council Member, School of Social Services, Ryerson University
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A Philanthropist & Serial Entrepreneur
Aditya Jha is a philanthropist & social activist at heart and also a passionate serial entrepreneur. His entrepreneurial pursuits include start-up technology ventures (software product development and IT services) as well as brick and mortar turn-around businesses (Chocolate manufacturing, Real Estate and Fine dining/Fast food restaurants) in Canada, Thailand, and India. He co-founded a software company, Isopia Inc., after having a successful career at Bell Canada as General Manager, eBusiness & Product Marketing. In July 2001, despite the downturn in the technology industry, Isopia was a major acquisition by Sun Microsystems Inc., USA. His current entrepreneurial engagement as CEO (International Operations) is to spearhead a niche Indian IT services company, Euclid Infotech Pvt. Ltd., which has customer base in over 100 countries. He is also the President & CEO of TransCard Capital Inc., that provides financial services to tourism industry & Real Estate investment for Latin America and especially for Cuba.
Accolades and awards that reflect pursuit of excellence
Aditya is Member of the Order of Canada (Canada’s highest civilian honours- recognizes lifetime outstanding achievement, dedication to community and service to the nation) and is recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. He was conferred Honorary Doctorate (2009) by Ryerson University’s Ted Rogers School of Business Management. He is honoured into Champions of Public Education in Canada Hall of Fame (2013) by The Learning Partnership. He is the Canadian Immigrant magazine’s (Toronto Star) Top 25 Canadian Immigrants 2010, South Asian Philanthropist 2010 (Mid-week news magazine), and Top 30 Most Influential Indo Canadians (India Abroad magazine- Power List 2009). The Indo Canada Chamber of Commerce (ICCC) awarded its 2004 Technology Achievement Award for his achievements in the field of Technology. He received CEO award, President’s Award and was also selected as President’s Club member for his professional excellence at Bell Canada. He is recipient of community service awards and recognitions from various national organizations.
Aditya is the appointee of the Government of Canada to the Board of First Nations Financial Management Board. His academic appointments includes: “Member of the Board of Governors” of Sheridan College of Technology & Advanced Learning, “Entrepreneur in Residence” role at the School of Business, Centennial College and “Advisory Council Member” of Dean, School of Social Services, Ryerson University. He served as board member of two TSX listed public companies and on Government of Ontario’s Ontario Investment & Trade Advisory Council. He was the National Convenor of Canada India Foundation (2009-11) and has also served on the Board of the Indo-Canada Chamber of Commerce and as International Coordination Committee Member of Non Resident Nepalese Association.
Nurturing entrepreneurs, supporting higher education through private foundation
Aditya sponsored (five years) a unique initiative working with the office of the Grand Chief of Nishnawbe Aski Nation to nurture entrepreneurship within the aboriginal communities of Canada. His charitable foundation (www.poafoundation.org)) created endowments at four institutions (Ryerson University, Trent University, York University, and George Brown College), which grants total of thirteen bursary awards ($42,000 annually) in perpetuity to students. He Chaired UNICEF Canada India HIV/AIDS campaign and was one of the Cabinet Members for Ryerson University Business School’s capital campaign ($72 million).
Aditya’s foundation (www.poafoundation.org) has also supported other projects: with Ryerson University a research project on Economic Value of Indo-Canadians; Pathways Education Program for the inner-city kids of Regent Park, Toronto; Share the Music endowment at Roy Thomson Hall to give Canadian aboriginals access to best musical performances; Infrastructure grant (for ballet school in Havana and Trillium Hospital, Mississauga); Toronto International Film Festival as Gold Patron; Canadian Museum of Human Rights; A student residence for kids from landless families in India through AIM for SEVA; and Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, and several other charitable projects. He has funded digital literacy project donating laptop and desktops to 11 schools in Nepal and to the Islamic Institute of Toronto as well has supported Nepal Library Foundation for setting up libraries in the remote villages of Nepal.
Professional achievements: the intellectual capital
Aditya was an Adjunct Faculty (National University of Singapore, 1989-94) and also been invited speaker at the Ted Rogers Business School, Schulich Business School, Rotman Business School and University of Ontario Institute of Technology, and other prestigious institutions in Canada and abroad. His approach to philanthropy is featured in the Economist Intelligence Unit (Economist magazine, UK) report entitled “The New World of Wealth-Seven key trends for investing, giving & spending among the very rich” and he also presented before the Standing Senate Committee (Senate of Canada) on Foreign Affairs & International Trade on Rise of China, India and Russia and its implication on Canadian policy. He was one of the seven Canadians who accompanied Prime Minister Stephen Harper on his State visit to India in 2009 & also subsequently in 2012. He has been featured as “New Radical Pioneers” in Julia Moulden’s book “We Are the New Radicals”, McGraw Hill.
Aditya was the Keynote speaker at the 16th Annual Nishnawbe Aski Nation Business Awards, South Asian Heritage Gala, Power Breakfast Series speaker at Mississauga Board of Trade and Chair/ Keynote speaker of the South Asian Philanthropy Conference. He has published/presented papers in several international journals/ conferences and has served as Editorial Review Board member of two prestigious journals as well as has moderated three business roundtables for increased trade linkages between India and Canada including at PBD2011 event in Toronto as well as speaker at “Vibrant Gujarat 2013”. He was one of the bloggers “My City Your City” for Toronto Star and blogs in Huffington Post and has written editorial article in National Post, The Globe & Mail daily and has been featured in major National and international dailies and magazines. Aditya started his professional career after investing 4½ years as Research Scholar at School of Computer & Systems Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, India and has obtained M.Sc. in Mathematical Statistics & Post Graduate Diploma in Computer Science.
- “What it takes to succeed in business – Candy magnate Aditya Jha shares his secrets to sweet success” Link >>
- “Passion makes things happen” Link >>
- “Natives get a hand up from Indo-Canadian” Link >>
- ” ‘Spirit of art’ led curator to ROM” – Link >>
- “Toronto philanthropist Aditya Jha talks of charity” Link >>
- “From Different Worlds” Link >>
- “We are the New Radicals” – book by Julia Moulden Link >>
- “CBC Radio One – First Nations Entrepreneurs” Link >>
Some Personal Quotes:
- In Life, you always get more than what you deserve or less than what you deserve – You never quite get just the right amount. If you get less you must work harder & smarter, and if you get more then you must give back;
- Before I became active with ‘giving’ to charitable causes, I looked at giving as charity to others. Now, I see giving as charity to myself. You are giving to your expanded self, your passion, your talent to make your desired changes and to your obligation to payback to the favorite social circumstances as only those favourable social circumstances allow people like yourself, your kids and for all, that you care about to prosper;
- We never have spare money to give but I have no doubt in my mind that we can always spare to give;
- Nobel laureate, Herbert Simon estimated that the “social capital” is responsible for at least 90% of what people earn in wealthy societies. I am trying to make a case that all of us have obligation to give and pay back to that “Social Capital” and ALL of us can “SPARE to Give”;
- I strongly believe that a handful of well intentioned First Nation leadership, with an open mind, great deal of determination, and certain degree of impatience to shake-up the existing mode of aboriginal business operation in partnership with corporate Canada that can make the First Nation community a highly prosperous community too;
- Smart hard work takes you much farther than just being smart or just working hard;
- Don’t start a business only because you have a great idea or you don’t have a regular job. Ask yourself if you have the passion to work on it . Passion will make things happen for you. ”