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Indira S. Somani, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of Journalism at the School of Communications, Howard University in Washington, DC. She studies effects of satellite television on the Indian diaspora, specifically the generations of the Asian Indians who migrated to the U.S. between 1960 and 1972, and their media habits. She has been published in the Journal of International and Intercultural Communication, and the Asian Journal of Communications. For the fall of 2011, Somani was awarded a Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research Fellowship to study the "Western influence of Indian programming in India." She brings 10 years of broadcast journalism experience as a television news producer to the classroom, most notably from CNBC and WJLA-TV, the ABC affiliate in Washington, D.C. She has been a leader of the South Asian Journalists Association (SAJA), where she has also won several "Outstanding" awards on her coverage of South Asians in North America. Prior to joining Howard University, Somani was an Assistant Professor of Journalism at Washington and Lee University (Lexington, VA) and American University's School of Communication (Washington, DC). Somani earned her Master's in Journalism from the Medill School of Journalism, Northwestern University in 1993, and her Ph.D. from the Phillip Merrill College of Journalism, University of Maryland, College Park in May, 2008.

Leena Jayaswal is currently an Associate Professor in the School of Communication at American University in Washington DC. She is head of the Photography Concentration. She has also lectured on radical media internationally.  She received her MFA in Photography from the Maryland Institute College of Art and two BA’s in Visual Media and Anthropology from American University. Her photography has been nationally recognized in galleries around the country, including the Gandhi Memorial Center,  Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, The Washington Project for the Arts/ Corcoran Gallery of Art, Arlington Arts Center, Kathleen Ewing Gallery, Lexington Art League and the International Visions Gallery. Her slides are a part of the collection of the Asian American Arts Centre in New York. She has worked for famed photographer, Mary Ellen Mark, and with the Sandra Berler Gallery for many years. Her films have been screened in various film festivals around the country. “An Impression: Dischord Records” was honored as the Best Selected Juror Film at the 2nd Annual Small International Film Festival at the Berkeley Art Center, in California and has screened in other juried film festivals, including the Electric City Film Fest, Miami Independent Film and Music, Delray Beach Film Festival, DC Meets Delhi Film Festival, National Museum of Women in the Arts Film Festival and DC Independent Film Festival just to name a few. She was the producer, cinematographer and director of the Ganges Rivers portion of the collaborative film, River Planet, which one a 2011 Telly Award and has screened in international and national film festivals.

photo by Preston Merchant

photo by Iwan Bagus
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