My name is Priya Kumar. I was born and raised in sunny California, where I completed my BA in Media Studies and Psychology. After graduating college, I moved to Boston to pursue my MA in General Management from Harvard University. I graduated in 2010 and joined the Environmental Defense Fund, a large non profit organization as a marketing consultant. Although I work full time, I continue to work with the media for a public access television in my hometown. I produce and host a television show “Pet Lover’s Paradise” with my adorable cat Maya. Additionally, I am a trained classical dancer in Bharat Natyam (South Indian dance form) and professional vocalist since age 19.
What’s your current profession?
I am a performing artist and model. I also work full time as a marketing consultant.
What are your top 3 achievements?
1) I was a top finalist in NTV Star Search 2010, which is a musical reality show similar to America’s Got Talent. 2) I have represented my state Massachusetts as Ms India New England and Most Photogenic in 2011. 3) I earned my master’s degree from Harvard University in May 2010.
Your educational background?
I completed my BA in Media Studies and Psychology in May 2006 from the Claremont Colleges in California. Afterwards, I earned my MA in General Management from Harvard University in May 2010. I also have a diploma in film making/media production from the New York Film Academy.
Tell us more about your family, with whom you are closest?
I am very close to my parents and maternal grandparents. I also have a younger brother Varun who is more of a friend to me.
What kind of modeling/spokesperson projects have you done?
I have been a spokesperson for Liberty Tax Services in 2010 (Boston area) and have also modeled for numerous boutiques in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island and California. I have done hair modeling for Sebastian Beauty in Los Angeles and also been featured in Providence, LA and Boston fashion week. Aside from these, I have been featured on MTV and VH1 for various American music videos. Last year, I was the winner of the World Fashion Contest in Atlantic City, NJ.
What kind of philanthropic/fundraising work have you done?
I have performed in vocal concerts for noble causes since 2000, including religious organizations. I did a series of musical programs to benefit causes like relief for the Haiti earthquake in January 2010 and cure for Parkinson’s disease in 2011. I also support Habitat for Humanity (New Orleans chapter) and was there to join hands with the organization in April 2009. Dating back to 1999- 2002, I completed 300 hours of volunteer work service to Pomona Valley Hospital in California. I was working in their maternity and pharmancy departments, and later went on to volunteer for AmeriCorps from 2004-2005. There, I volunteered 500 hours of service as a student instructor to Jump Start Spark a Life, a preschool program for children of low income families. I have also volunteered for Cats in Need- a program to spay/neuter and provide homes to feral, stray and homeless felines from time to time since 2001. the victims of Tsunami in 2005, and several runway shows to benefit.
What are your favorite platforms or which charitable organizations you admire most?
I admire Cats in Need for the work the organization does to protect cats, one of the most popular and lovable pets in the US. Similarly, I admire the Humane Society, Black Cat Rescue and Make a Wish Foundation for their efforts in making the world a better place for living beings.
Do you have any interest in politics?
I would describe myself as progressive, but as for taking sides I am neutral.
What’s your dream job?
My dream job is working full time as a media professional and continue to host my program Pet Lover’s Paradise on a larger scale.
Who is your favorite role model?
I have had many role models whom I aspire to such as Mother Theresa, Mahatma Gandhi, Mozart and my own dance and music teachers. I would love to become half that person at some point during my lifetime.
Ten years from now where do you see yourself?
I definitely see myself as a full-fledged media personality and hope to have released some music CDS and become internationally known for my singing abilities.
Favorite Book (s):
Memoirs of a Geisha, Song Sung True, plus I love reading any books on beauty, health or animals.
Favorite Musician (s):
Frank Sinatra, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, plus many ethnic artists
Favorite Movie (s):
The Squeakel, Three Idiots, A Walk to Remember, Bridesmaids and more
Favorite Actor (s):
Steve Martin, Brad Pitt, Adam Sandler and a few Bollywood actors as well (Khans)
Favorite Sport (s):
Favorite Athlete (s):
too many to list
Favorite TV Show (s):
Everybody Loves Raymond, Family Matters, Simpsons and Full House
Favorite Place (s):
New York, London, Boston and Los Angeles
Favorite Website (s):
Favorite Restaurant (s):
I love Thai/Chinese Cuisine. Other than that, I love Indian fast food and pizzas.
Do you have any pets?
Yes, I have an America Shorthair cat named Maya who’s 8 yrs old. She is one of the best companions in my life.