By Sumaiya Malik
Also known as BAGA, Bangladeshi Association of Greater Austin is a registered 501- c(3) run by eleven board members who are elected by the Bangladeshi community for a period of one year.
According to Mr. Nizam Uddin, a previous board member and president and who works for Dell, the association proves to be a good place to learn leadership skills, and social welfare.
The association supports endeavors by the Mayors office for betterment of the community and gives back through community work.
Park cleaning and donation to food banks is regular on its agenda.
Mr. Nizam Uddin said that membership is free and currently there are around 700 registered members.
It is assumed that each membership is a household and the number of Bangladeshis in Austin would be around 5000+.
A community of educated individuals ranging from the tech industry, to businessmen, PhDs and physicians, the group is established and giving back to the city in all walks of life.
The association does several events per year.
Victory Day, Freedom Day, and Bengali New Year Festival in third week of April is a city sponsored event.
BAGA gets all the fundraising and corporate sponsors make it happen. HEB, and Silicon Labs are regular sponsors.
Next year’s event will be on April 18 at Fiesta Garden. BAGA was instrumental in sponsoring the Citywide Iftaar with Congresswoman Ilhan Omar of Minnesota in Austin this year.
One of the ex-presidents of BAGA, Rashad Islam, was also the president of the Asian Chamber of Commerce. Current president is Jashim Chowdhry.