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The Ceative Rebel Within

The most creative individuals are often also the most productive ones – making them ‘creative achievers’

Meet an amazing group of people who, on a path of conscious growth and development, answered an internal calling to create a world outside their normal realm. These creative rebels decided to think outside the box and do things that other people wouldn’t even think of doing. So, how did they become a creative rebel?

They started with a need to learn new things, new experiences, questioned everything and broke the rules — not just those imposed on them, but by their own inherent ones too.These rebels stopped the cycle of repetition, instructions, and predictability – essentially, they went looking for something new, novel, and unexpected.

If you’re not sure where to start or are waiting for you’re a-ha moment, attend this session for inspiration and lessons learnt from these notable creative rebels.



Khaled Hussein, Co-founder, CTO, Tilt

Khaled saw a computer for the first time when he was 18 years old in Alexandria, Egypt and has been hooked ever since. He studied Computer Science and Human Computer Interaction at Virginia Tech, and went on to lead Rackspace's corporate strategy.

In 2012, Khaled co-founded Tilt, a platform that offers people a free, easy and highly social way collect, fundraise or pool money with their groups.  Since then, over 300,000 groups have used Tilt to turn their ideas, large and small, into reality. Tilt has also built out tools for businesses to run their own branded crowdfunding campaigns, which have been used by brands including ESPN and Dick's Sporting Goods.

A graduate of Y Combinator, and funded by Andreessen Horowitz and SV Angel among others, Tilt is now launching more campaigns per day than any other crowdfunding platform.



Guneeta Sing Bhalla, Founder & Executive Director,  The 1947 Partition Archive

Guneeta is Founder & Executive Director at The 1947 Partition Archive.  Previously, she was an experimental condensed matter physicist who recently completed her tenure as a post-doctoral researcher at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the University of California at Berkeley.  She studied quantum confinement at interfaces that include oxide heterostructures and domain walls in multiferroics. 

After a 2008 visit to the oral testimony archives at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial she was inspired and began interviewing Partition witnesses in 2009.  It was a deeply enriching experience and she wanted to share it with everyone.  She was also troubled with the realization that the generation of eye witnesses was nearly gone and taking their stories with them. This led to the concept of crowdsourcing oral histories of Partition, there by engaging the public in recording the people's history of the world's largest mass human displacement.  In 2011 The 1947 Partition Archive was born.  She has personally interviewed over 100 Partition survivors, rallied volunteers from all walks of life and built the grassroots foundations of this people-powered organization.  



Rucha Humnabadkar, Filmmaker: For Here Or To Go?

Rucha Humnabadkar is known for her work with acclaimed Indian filmmaker Nagesh Kukunoor. As Assistant Director and Art Director she was instrumental in delivering indie hits such as Hyderabad Blues, Rockford and Bollywood Calling. Her first feature film, For Here or To Go? had a world premiere in February 2015 at Cinequest Film Festival in San Jose. The film also premiered at IFFSA Toronto, the largest South Asian festival in North America.

For Here Or To Go? Is a contemporary comedy/drama about the trials and tribulations of an Indian technology entrepreneur, Vivek Pandit in the Silicon Valley, California. As Viviek’s visa is coming to an end, he is caught between fighting to keep everything he’s worked for here, or start from scratch and return to his home country. Trailer:

Rucha has a Masters in Design from Carnegie Mellon University. She focuses on leveraging the power of design, consumer insights, product strategy, and technology to create delightful and innovative user experiences for mobile and web. Rucha has over 10 years of experience designing, defining, and building consumer products at several of the best technology and internet companies. ; eBay, StubHub, Task Rabbit, Relay Rides, Chegg, Red Laser, One King's Lane and Intuit among others. 


Hasnain Zaidi, Founder and COO of Tava Indian Kitchen

Hasnain is the Founder and COO of Tava Indian Kitchen, a Bay Area restaurant concept committed to delicious food made responsibly and served beautifully. Tava has opened 3 locations in the last 3 years and is continuing to grow quickly.

Prior to starting Tava, he was a Management Consultant at Bain & Company where he was focused on semiconductor manufacturing and financial services. In 2012, he left to pursue the dream of building something a little more off the beaten path.

In addition to his work at Tava, Hasnain and his wife, Saira, are co-founders of a charitable organization called Hope For Bliss that helps low income young couples in the developing world have a beautiful wedding without the crippling debt that often goes with it.

Hasnain graduated from Duke University in 2008 with a degree in Public Policy and he currently serves on the Board of Advisors for the Duke Islamic Studies Center.



Pawan Kothari, Founder and CEO at the Chai Cart

Paawan is a seasoned hi-tech marketer and strategist and has worked over 10 years in the Silicon Valley for large technology corporations and start-ups. She has a computer science engineering degree from USC and a MBA from INSEAD.

In 2009, pulling a bicycle trailer, Paawan started her venture, The Chai Cart, as an informal food cart to serve homemade chai. In 2010, she finally quit her corporate job to bring together her passion for artisan foods and her desire to be an entrepreneur. 

Paawan has managed to byild a unique food business from concept to $300K+ revenueand has established direct retail distribution at gourmet grocery stores like Whole Foods Market and acquired corporate clients like Google, Twitter, and Gap. 



Moderator: Iram Nawaz

Iram Nawaz is an experienced communications and publishing professional with a portfolio of technical & academic publishing, editorial consultancies, and content management. She is currently Managing Editor at a hi-tech company in the Silicon Valley, CA. She has a Master in Publishing with a focus on Feminist Publishing from the UK, and a degree in Technical Communication from the Human Centered Design & Engineering School,  University of Washington, Seattle, USA.










Next Forum

OPEN Forum 2015
June 6th,  2015
Mountain View, CA

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