Dr. Neerja Birla
She is an inspiring personality, Neerja Birla is a progressive, dynamic and versatile woman, driven by her passions and an unwavering resolve to give back to society responsibly. A passionate educationist and a mental health champion, Neerja Birla is the founder and chairperson of the Aditya Birla Education Trust (ABET), which endeavours to positively impact the lives of people from all sections of society and bring about progressive change, whether it is in the field of education or on the mental health landscape of India.
Under the ABET umbrella and Birla’s dynamic leadership: Mpower is a revolutionary movement that has brought about a paradigm shift in India’s attitude towards mental health by spreading awareness, alleviating stigma, and providing holistic and quality mental health care to individuals from all walks of life.
The Aditya Birla World Academy, an international school with an Indian soul that promotes the holistic development of its students over and above their academic ones, has been ranked the 2nd Best International School in all of India. The Aditya Birla Integrated School, ranked the # 1 Special Needs School in the country, provides ground-breaking inclusive education to children with different learning or emotional needs.
The pioneering Aditya Birla Education Academy empowers educators by using state-of- the-art resources and tie-ups with renowned educational institutions from across the world to equip them with the avant-garde skills, tools and modes of 21st century teaching. Birla is the recipient of a multitude of Indian and international awards, including: The Business Today Most Powerful Women in Business Award (2020), The 50 Top Global Mental Health Leaders Award by the World Mental Health Congress (2019), and The Global Impact Leader of the Year Award at the UK-based Private Wealth Institute’s Global Annual Summit (2018). On a more personal note, Birla holds a Bachelor of Science Honours degree in psychology from the University of Derby, lives in Mumbai, is married to Kumar Mangalam Birla and is the proud mother of three children – Ananyashree, Aryaman Vikram and Advaitesha.
She is also a committed fitness and outdoor-sports enthusiast, loves reading and listening to music, and is extremely fond of travelling and trekking. A firm believer in the Japanese concept of wabi-sabi, Birla endeavours to find beauty in imperfection, impermanence and being incomplete. She aspires to be sthitpragya – being balanced and equanimous in an ongoing endeavour towards self-awareness and self-control.