Meet the Experts of roundtable discussion on Smart Cities in India organized by USINPAC

Dr. Udit Raj

Dr. Udit Raj is a Member of Parliament (Lok Sabha) from North-West Delhi constituency. He is a Member of the Consultative Committee, Ministry of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Member of the Rules Committee, and Member of the Standing Committee on Social Justice and Empowerment. His constituency has scope of total raw land, and new city, as one of the only five smart cities in India

He is an influential leader of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Dr. Raj has done extensive work for the welfare and socio-economic development of the vulnerable, marginalized, and poorest sections of Indian society. He is also Chairman of the Buddha Education Foundation, and National Chairman of the All India Confederation of SC/ST Organizations, which is the umbrella organization of various associations of SC/ST employees across India.

Dr Raj joined the Indian Revenue Service in 1988 and served as Deputy Commissioner, Joint Commissioner, and then Additional Commissioner of Income Tax at New Delhi. In 2003, he resigned from the government and dedicated himself to the socio-economic development and political empowerment of the vulnerable and downtrodden sections of society.

Dr Raj has also served as a Member of the National Integration Council, and a Member of the National Monitoring Committee on Education. He writes frequently for Indian and international media and was also the Editor of the fortnightly magazine, Voice of Buddha.

Sanjay Puri

Sanjay Puri is a recognized authority on US-India relations. He serves as the Chairman of the US-India Political Action Committee (USINPAC), a national, bipartisan political action committee representing over 3.2 million Indian-Americans. USINPAC works closely with members of Congress from both sides of the aisle, as well as with the administration, to ensure that the community’s concerns are addressed. USINPAC, through Mr. Puri’s leadership, played a key role in the passage of the US India Civil Nuclear Agreement which involved galvanizing the Indian American community to work with the US Congress.

Mr. Puri is also the founder, President and CEO of the Alliance for US India Business (AUSIB). AUSIB is dedicated to strengthening economic ties between the US and India.

Mr. Puri was the Founder of Optimos Inc. a very successful strategy and enterprise information technology company that was sold in 2014. Mr. Puri is a frequent public speaker and expert witness on US-India relations and the political impact of the Indian-American community. He has been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Times, on National Public Radio (NPR), the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS), CNN and Nightline.

Vik Chauhan

Vikram (Vik) Chauhan is a Technology Executive with over 30 years’ experience through leadership roles in several companies (including Deloitte, CSC, and Northrop Grumman)

Vik is a founding member of USINPAC and Chairman of DEFTIAC an advisory NGO for defense and security technology collaboration between US and India.

In addition to the US Public sector, Vik has advised a number of foreign governments – including those of India, the U.K., Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Colombia, Philippines and others – on building Smart Cities, e-Governance and Public Security.

He is an acclaimed evangelist of Smart Cities, and has authored numerous articles detailing the building of Smart Cities and Command Centers, along with co-writing a book entitled Future Cities: Designing and Building A Smart City.

He has developed Smart City solutions and partnerships with IBM, SAP, Siemens, Microsoft, Motorola, and Cisco. Vik is Member Executive Technical Council, Chairman Healthcare of Network Centric Operations Industry Consortium (, a Global organization focused on industry neutral concepts with 55+ members and affiliates representing 12 countries and a Co-Founding member of Cyber Risk Marketplace (CRM), a pioneer in the Cyber insurance and breach protection.

Robinder Sachdev

Mr. Robinder Sachdev is the Director of India Affairs at USINPAC and a founding member and a recognized expert on foreign affairs and economic diplomacy.

Robinder is also founder president of The Imagindia Institute. Mr. Sachdev is a world acknowledged authority across geopolitics, public and economic diplomacy, image and campaign management, cross cultural communications, and affairs of the Indian Diasporas.

In Jan 2011. Imagindia launched the Come, Clean India – national campaign on cleanliness in India a little before the national campaign by PM Modi.

Mr. Sachdev has lived and worked in the U.S., Russia, Kazakhstan, and Dubai, and is now based at New Delhi. Mr. Sachdev is also Trustee of the Children’s Book Trust, India’s oldest national children’s organization founded by the legendary political cartoonist, Shankar

Mr. Sachdev is frequently quoted in the media and hosts a weekly show on foreign affairs on a regional TV channel in India.He has contributed to training programs in cross-cultural communications for the U.S. Navy and Department of State and co-founded the Intercultural Management Quarterly published by the American University, Washington, DC.

Pedro B. Ortiz

Pedro B. Ortiz is currently a Visiting Professor at Milano Politecnico University (Italy) as well as Senior Urban Consultant for international governments and multilaterals, as the Inter-American Development Bank or the World Bank (Washington DC).

He has accumulated metropolitan management experience in the five continents. Previously, he was the founder and Director of the Masters Program of Town Planning of the University King Juan Carlos of Madrid, after being Director General for Regional Planning of Madrid Region and Deputy Major for Madrid in charge of Strategic Planning for the Capital of Spain. He made the Strategic Plan of Madrid in 1994 and the Metropolitan Plan in 1996. You can find out more about Pedro and his work here.

His work addresses metropolitan rapid growth all over the world, as does his new book ‘The Art of Shaping the Metropolis’. Pedro’s work expands on a methodology for smart metropolitan planning developed during his time as director of the Metropolitan Plan for Madrid with two models to restructure mega metropolises: the Metro–Matrix archetype at the metropolitan scale, and Balanced Urban Development unit for the city scale. Pedro’s vision is for a new city form that moves from the dominant monocentric model to polycentric cities, based on mass public transport, with a reticular grid pattern. If developed and designed well, it is argued that each center will have its own character, enhanced by designers of public space to create centers with a sense of place blending culture, heritage and modernity.

Sandra M. Baer

Ms. Baer is the Senior Director for Alliances at the Smart Cities Council— a coalition of the world’s foremost smart city practitioners and innovators focused on livability, walkability and sustainability. She is responsible for leading engagement with government leaders in cities around the globe.  She leads speaker recruitment and serves as a moderator, MC for Smart City events, worldwide, including Smart Cities Now and Smart Cities Week, scheduled for September 2015 in Washington, DC.

Ms. Baer’s professional life has focused on relationship marketing, business development, external affairs and public speaking. She has experience in the communications industry—telecommunication, wireless, Internet, broadcasting and cable—and has an extensive background in government affairs, homeland security and public safety resilience.

Dr.Indu Singh

Dr. Singh is VP and Head of Washington DC operations for Los Alamos Technical Associates (LATA) where he directs federal, international and cybersecurity business. Dr. Singh is world’s leading expert on Smart and Safe City and was responsible for the first Smart City conceptualization for Singapore (intelligent island) in the pre-Internet days. He has published numerous books and his articles have been featured in numerous journals on Smart Cities, his latest book in 2013 is a widely read book entitled The Safe City: Living Free in a Dangerous World.

Dr. Singh has executed Smart City engineering, security and IT business in 49 countries and has traveled to 81 countries He is a hands-on executive with strategic thinking and business operations experience.

He has extensive business and technology management experience with proven P&L track record. He founded three mid-size high tech companies and served as President and CEO. His business and consulting experience includes management, security solution engineering, domestic and international business development, mergers and acquisition, turn-around, investment capital.

Douglas B. Baker

Co-Founder and Managing Partner

Monument Capital Group LLC, prior to co-founding Monument Capital Group in 2008, Mr. Baker served as a Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Border and Transportation Security Policy within the Homeland Security Council (October 2005 – December 2007). Mr. Baker was responsible for developing and managing programs that impact border and transportation security; evaluating technologies and assisting with establishing annual budgets.

Previously, Mr. Baker served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary in the United States Department of Commerce from 2001 through 2005. In this capacity, he served as a policy advisor to the Secretary and Under Secretary on issues related to international financial and monetary affairs managing programs that developed trade policy, identified foreign market barriers and analyzed trends affecting the domestic and foreign competitiveness for U.S. businesses.

Prior to joining the Bush Administration, Mr. Baker served as the chief administrative officer and Deputy General Counsel and ran the day-to-day operations for the Harris County-Houston Sports Authority between 1999 and 2001. He currently serves as a member of the board of managers for Persistent Sentinel LLC and for System Development Integration (SDi).  Mr. Baker and his partners Founded Monument Capital Group Holdings in 2013.

Mark Brunner

Mark Brunner is a Vice President at The Cohen Group. Mark joined the group in 2015 after serving as the Senior Advisor to Senator Mark Warner of Virginia from 2009 to 2015. In that position he was the Senator’s principal counselor on defense, foreign policy, and energy issues. Mark also served as the Director of the Senate India Caucus, and was instrumental in growing the Caucus to become the largest country caucus in the U.S. Senate, and refocusing its efforts to address issues of importance for U.S.-India foreign policy and business-to-business relationships. He created a partnership between the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the India Caucus to bring basketball to India, and facilitated a landmark agreement between the Indian government, American community colleges, and private sector foundations to construct new schools in India for vocational skills training.

Prior to working for Senator Warner, Mark served in the Navy as a pilot, and flew several types of aircraft and helicopters, deploying multiple times on ships including the USS CONSTELLATION (CV-64) to the Arabian Gulf, where he led the first H-60B Seahawk armed helicopter deployment on an aircraft carrier. Mark was awarded the U.S. Navy’s Superior Public Service Award by Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus. Mark is also a member of National Journal’s “insider’s group”– the top 50 national security policy experts who provide an assessment of foreign policy and defense issues through a weekly poll featured in National Journal.

Charlie Bell

Mr. Bell has over 25 years’ experience in international development strategic planning and program management. As the Group Vice President for the Integrated Development Group of the Louis Berger Group, he oversees a portfolio that encompasses a variety of projects related to climate change/resiliency planning, trade and investment, microfinance, small/medium enterprise development, business development services, agriculture/food security, financial services, community development and democracy and governance.

He is a private sector development specialist with expertise in research and evaluation, financial and economic analysis, market surveys, institutional development, information systems, and strategic planning. With work experience in more than 40 countries, Mr. Bell is familiar with working in all regions of the world and with a variety of clients (USAID, USTDA, USDOJ, DFAT, DFID, JICA, World Bank, Asian Development Bank, Millenium Challenge Corporation and International Trade Organizations).

Robert Puentes

Robert Puentes is a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program and director of the program’s Metropolitan Infrastructure Initiative, one of the leading infrastructure policy shops in the country.

He is a nationally recognized expert and seasoned professional in sustainable infrastructure focusing on transportation, water, and energy.

The work Rob leads at Brookings successfully combines infrastructure research and policy development across multiple levels of government (federal, state, and local), sectors of infrastructure (transportation, energy, and water), and constituencies (corporate, civic, advocacy, and finance) and brings that perspective to ground in the nation’s metropolitan areas.

Amit Dalal

Mr. Dalal has over 25 of years of experience working as a consultant, engineer and utilities market specialist at Tetra Tech, Inc. and prior to that with PA Consulting, Inc. He is a results driven leader and entrepreneur with hands-on experience in conceptualizing and implementing business strategy initiatives for utilities and companies. His expertise is in technology market research, conducting feasibility studies and business process.

He has worked with major US energy utilities and their subsidiaries and manufacturing and service companies serving the utility market.  His clients include:  Caterpillar, Cummins Engine, Statkraft, Toray Industries (reverse osmosis), Japan NEDO (desalination), Observant USA, Inc.(remote monitoring of irrigation) and Philmac,(couplings for water distribution).  His work comprised of technology assessment, benchmarking, pricing and market positioning, competitor review and business case development.