Dilshad Dayani is a mother, educator, author, leadership trainer, feminist activist, and a broadcast journalist.
She is also the founding president of “World Women Global Council,” a global platform to empower women by engaging men who facilitate the power of change. A unique model of advocacy fuelled by action allowed women to become mentors, leaders, and builders of viable support system that focus on education, leadership, and economic empowerment.
Dilshad has served 25 years of civic leadership in gender equity as an immigrant. She was the founding Vice-President of advocacy for the United States National Commission-UN WOMEN Dallas Chapter, and has also served as a UN correspondent and president of National Diversity Council for women- Dallas Chapter. Dilshad has served the State Department as a program developer and speaker and has been a communication coach for fortune 500 companies. As a strategic collaborator she loves to connect resources that impact scalability in intention and purpose. Her mission and passion to impact disadvantaged girls started at the age of 13, when she saved and tutored victims of child abuse in Pakistan and later created youth intervention modules to support girls in Karachi. When she arrived in Los Angeles as a young married woman in 1992, she supported immigrant mothers by visiting their homes and educating them on various issues and struggles from child development to legal services. After 2 years, she moved to Dallas, TX with her family and started serving disadvantaged multicultural women through the following organizations: Dallas Association of Parenting, Practical Parenting, Plano Educational District and Dallas International Alliance. Soon, as a board member with associations, she identified and addressed the needs to bring awareness, educational tools, and resource mobilization to feed culturally friendly programs to immigrant families and women of color.
As a feminist activist and a graduate student at Columbia University in 2005, she curated and produced one of the very first culturally aligned broadcasting edutainment module to empower immigrant women and families from South Asia. She produced and hosted it nationally through South Asian radio channels in a bilingual format. The talk shows incorporated research-based information compatible to the common man genre as well as addressed cultural transitions into the new country. She was determined to help and serve the voiceless women who were underserved by many social agencies due to gaps in relevant skill set, communication and cultural bias. Her field visits with the women of color paid off and helped her identify the acculturation process and family depression as major roadblocks. More often than not, these factors prevented immigrants to be productive members of the American society.
In 2005, her radio shows, podcasts, and virtual, multicultural resource models weaved specific South Asian themes for women empowerment supporting social agencies serving immigrants in their relevant districts. The specific media initiative brought cost effective interventions reducing mental health issues, and it aided as a bridge for social institutions looking for answers to support immigrant parents. She has delivered close to 400 shows influencing more than 50,000 listeners along the East Coast and Texas regions for 8 years addressing cross-cultural parental communication, awareness on multicultural women’s issues, and advocacy campaigns against domestic violence. Through this process, she collaborated with local law enforcement support initiatives bringing cultural understanding to promote effective delivery of services and initiatives.
Thus, traditional media technology was used as a tool of mass education to address cultural mobility challenges with resource mobilization and communication tools. She won awards from the South Asian stations. Her accolades range from media to academia. She was honored with the prestigious award for “Outstanding Mentor in Texas” by Women’s International Network, for her untiring efforts as an advocate, community leader, and broadcast journalist for minorities.
She has won distinguished community service awards from “Leading Women America” and outstanding communicator by the Asian Chamber of Commerce. She was also recognized as best women empowerment story teller by South Asian radio stations in NY and Dallas and Global Women Advocate by Our World Media 2014. Recently in July 2015, she received the Immigrant Journey award for Professional Excellence in civic leadership for 25 years by Cowles and Thompson in collaboration with Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson’s office.
Dilshad is also the founder of the Lead 2 Empower institute: an impact driven content management body to support sustainable leadership, gender equity, and global diversity. She works with academia corporations and civil societies to develop and deliver training programs and seminars in order to bring the best experiential learning outcomes. Her Youth Initiative for Women Leadership program continues to empower girl’s leadership and STEM program both here in the US, and in developing regions like India.
Dilshad Dayani has also been an active member on local and national advisory boards, including NPR, KERA, Asia Initiatives NY, Child Literacy NY, Mosaic Human Rights, Global Diversity and Leadership exchange, and Asian Chamber of Commerce Dallas chapter. She has also served as a consultant for few UN projects and mentored as a global thought leader for Kappa Delta Pi, where she did online sessions for teachers around the country.
Dilshad holds a Master’s degree in educational leadership from Columbia University and a Doctorate from Northcentral University. She plans to teach Gender Equity in Communication and Business at George Town University this summer. (2016) Dilshad lives with her husband and two adorable sons in New York.
Article written for Huffington Post
Mothers and motherhood have been revered for millennia. Maternal Greek and Roman goddesses were celebrated with extravagant festivals, and in 16th-century Europe, “Mothering Sunday” took place during Lent, when Christians would attend a special service at the main church in their area, or their “mother church.” Over time, this merged with the American holiday created in 1908 by Anna Jarvis, who was inspired to create a day to recognize the sacrifices that mothers make for their children.
University Hiring Manager at IBM
Dilshad worked with IBM as a consultant for new university hires during a ‘Communications Camp’. She coached our employees to improve their written and presentation skills through role play exercises. Her leadership experience and insight helped ingrain individual excellence when communicating in client situations. Her sensitivity to the diversity of our audience was vital to creating effective, perceptual improvements for each person she interacted with. She is a dedicated, driven professional and it was my privilege to work with her.
CEO of North Texas Council
Dilshad has worked with me as a volunteer for the North Texas Council for International visitors under the State Department as both a professional resource, speaking authoritatively and eloquently on the many issues and challenges faced by new American women, and as a programmer for the organization, putting together professional visitor programs for visitors on subjects as diverse as Domestic Abuse and Violence, Women as Institutional Change Agents, and Trafficking in Persons. Dilshad’s knowledge of these areas, and her contacts throughout the North Texas community, have resulted in the opportunity for current and emerging foreign leaders sent to the U.S. under the auspices of the State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program to meet with local experts in these fields, building new professional relationships and helping to foster international understanding.
North Texas is always one of several stops on these short term professional visits. These programs normally take several weeks to put together, assembling local experts to meet with our visitors and attending to the many logistical challenges involved. Dayani has helped us put together some exceptional programs, including one that had to be organized in the space of two days for a visitor group redirected from New York City following Hurricane Sandy. We could not have made this happen without her subject-matter expertise, her diplomatic and organizational skills, and her very substantial efforts.
Economic Policy Analyst, Economist and Journalist
Newsmax Contributor and Newsmax Financial Brain Trust Participant; Economic Consultant to Dick Morris (former advisor to President Clinton), Former Consultant to Oppenheimer Capital, Merrill Lynch, JP Morgan Chase, Bank of New York, and Mellon Bank
During the two years that I have known Dilshad, she has repeated demonstrated a highly admirable, principled, and authentic persona and work ethic. Her overarching vision is to motivate and empower others, especially those in disadvantaged communities, to realize their true potential psychologically, emotionally, socially, and financially.
She presents and articulates her message masterfully: a confluence of humility, compassion, intellect, and insight. She is a true inspiration for immigrant women who struggle to make an impact.