Samir’s feet have taken him to many places. The rest of his body has often followed. Having lived and worked on five continents, his passion is to understand and cultivate the relationship between people and place. After working for Dell Computers, he left Office Space to reeducate himself in water systems, sustainable agriculture, renewable energy and environmental engineering in Fiji, India, Italy, Argentina and many points in between. He even had a stint as a dishwasher for His Holiness the Dalai Lama. His roots in Jainism and following the teachings of Gandhiji have led him to become involved in the diaspora Indian communities of North America by strengthening the connection between environmental stewardship, culture and faith through spiritual ecology. For the past four years, Samir has been involved in researching and developing restoration applications for mountaintop removal minesites in the coalfields of Appalachia. His work contributed to the 2008 Buckminster Fuller Design Award, “Comprehensive Design for a Carbon Neutral World: The Challenge of Appalachia” as well as the Central Appalachian Prosperity Project led by Bill Becker and David Orr.
Samir is currently the Sustainability Postdoctoral Fellow at Queen’s University in Ontario. He teaches and conducts research on mining community empowerment at the fifth largest mining school in the world. Samir earned a B.S. in Computer Systems Engineering from Purdue University and a Ph.D. specializing in Systems Ecology, Ecological Design, and Community Empowerment Economics from the University of Vermont. Interests? Samir loves to eat good music, drink nature and play in delicious food.