Wishing you all a very happy and prosperous New Year! We look forward to another great year of service and commitment to our temple. Our Executive Committee is striving towards greater accountability, organization and efficiency in each of the committees.
We welcome our new manager, Mr. Subramanium Natarajan, CPA, who has been a volunteer at our temple for the past two years. We are grateful to our previous manager, Mr. Narender Venkata, who remains a helpful resource and a dedicated volunteer. Mani Subramani and his team, the Religious Committee, worked hard to finalize the religious events for 2009 and working hard to finalize events for 2010. Rajiv Dama and his Finance committee team have diligently worked at greater transparency and accurate accounting. Vijay Kumar and GP Rao continue to head the front desk with a team of hardworking volunteers. We plan to build a new, comprehensive database of devotees.
Baskar Gopalan manages our website and has created online sign-ups for the Tours, Auditorium and Kitchen volunteer committees on the Mandir website. In fact, this monthly online newsletter is due to Baskar's efforts. Madhu Jain and Chetna Atreya of the Cultural Committee are responsible for the amazing productions for Holi and Diwali. As heads of the Food Committee, Venkat Kothur and Leela Venky are making fantastic strides in revamping our kitchen. We have a new cook/priest, Anil Kumar, who will help us make prasad and meet our community's food needs. Byron Byraiah, Palaniswami and Punjabhai Patel ensure that our Facilities are maintained well. Vishal Dutt is in charge of our increasingly popular Youth Camps. Lakshmi Nagarajan, Vandana Belhe and Janaki Byraiah head the Gardening Landscaping Committee, which beautifies our Temple and has fundraising plant sales.
KRJayanthi and Lalitha Sundaram have streamlined purchasing and inventory in the Procurement Committee. Sujatha Prasad, Ranjan and others in the Flowers Committee are responsible for the absolutely enchanting garlands we see at our Temple. Vallabha Tantry and her team run the temple store efficiently. The Vishnu Seva Group under Janaki, Vallabha and Naina Varanasi is organizing more outreach community service efforts. We are really excited to have Jayashree Ramanujan as our new Volunteers Coordinator! Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you'd like to volunteer. As always, we need volunteers. Heartfelt thanks to all our volunteers. Our temple is a wonderful place because of your efforts!
To the leaders of our committees:
The power and impact of the invisible leader may not be seen, but it is surely felt by the system. As Tao te Ching, a Chinese philosopher, wrote: "When a good leader is finished, the people think they did it themselves." A true leader motivates others to take responsibility and has the grace to step aside to let another person take the credit. While we sincerely applaud the selfless service of many volunteers who "just get the job done", let us recognize that part of our service, or dharma, is to train others to do the job. By involving and teaching others, we allow our temple to thrive in the long run. "Invisible leadership" is about being visible in a way that invites freedom, expression, engagement, and connection. People should be encouraged to take responsibility for their work and their accomplishments. Let us not take our gratification from the thrill of the spotlight; instead, we should find gratification in creating an environment that empowers others to learn and grow. A leader who inspires others to strive for their best is uncommon, yet the invisible leaders are the ones who have built or nurtured many great organizations. Leadership is about the joy of allowing others to make mistakes and learn. I hope many of us in this community continue to take on leadership roles and let others shine.
President, Executive Committee
Hindu Society of Minnesota