Lisa Ray is an internationally
acclaimed performer, philanthropist and star with a reputation for taking on
challenging issue-oriented films. Raised in Canada by an Indian father and
Polish mother, Ray was discovered while on vacation in India and went on to
become not only one of the most successful cover models and celebrities in
India but also an acclaimed, award-winning actress who starred in Canada’s
Oscar nominated film, Water, amongst other prestigious credits. Named one of
the ‘Ten most beautiful Indian women of the millenium’ by a Times of India
poll, Ray cemented her profile as an iconic figure in India before leaving for
drama school in London and opportunities around the world.
Along the way, Ray found time
along the way to host her own entertainment show in India, filmed a landmark
music video for Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, and became the enduring brand ambassador
for Rado Watches. In Canada, Ray has been seen as the co-host of award shows
and events such as The Genies, The Giller Prize and The Crystal Awards for
Women in Film and Television. In 2009 she was named ‘Trailblazer’ at the
Reelworld Film Festival and featured as one of the ’50 Most Beautiful People’
of the country in the Canadian edition of Hello Magazine.
In 2009, Ray attended the Toronto
International Film Festival in support of her work in two films. The event
marked an important public announcement, in which Ray chose to share her
diagnosis of Multiple Myeloma with media and the public. The outpouring of
support was immediate and overwhelming. She also started a blog (‘The Yellow
Diaries’) to share her cancer experiences. Her forthrightness and humour in
navigating a difficult illness have earned her the attention and respect of
people from all corners of the world, as well as ‘The Voice Achievers Award,
2009’ and ‘The Hope Award, 2010’. Ray went on to help raise funds for the
establishment of the first research chair for Multiple Myeloma at Princess
Margaret Hospital in Toronto.
Ray’s philanthropic interests
range from taking part in the on-air drive for SickKids Hospital to Ambassador
of Plan Canada’s ‘Because I Am A Girl’ campaign, a global movement that
supports the rights of girls around the world.
Post a stem cell transplant in
February 2010, Ray is now cancer-free and working on her first book. In early
2011 she headlined the national ‘Make Myeloma Matter’ media campaign, filmed a
5 part series for TLC in India and is returning to the stage with Luminato’s
‘Taj’ opposite Kabir Bedi and continues to work in film and television. A
passionate advocate for stem cell technology, outspoken public speaker and
longtime yoga practitioner, Lisa partners with co-owners Paris and Annette, in
2011 to open Moksha Yoga Brampton.
In 2011 she headlined the
national ‘Make Myeloma Matter’ media campaign, filmed a 5-part series for TLC
in India, ‘Oh My Gold’ for which she was nominated as ‘Best Host’ at the Asian
TV Awards, and returned to the stage with Luminato’s ‘Taj’ opposite Kabir Bedi.
Lisa continues to work in film and television, and was a host at the 2011
International Indian Film Academy ‘IIFA Rocks’ fashion and music event, as well
as a presenter at the IIFA Awards and the 2011 Giller Prize.
Lisa has recently taken on the
role of host on Top Chef Canada. The show, which is Food Network Canada’s
top-rated series, and recently wrapped production of its third season.
In 2012, Lisa was named
Ambassador for the Pantene Beautiful Lengths Campaign, named one of Canada’s 50
Most Beautiful by Hello Magazine and recognised with a ‘Facing Cancer Together
Award of Honour’ by the ‘Look Good Feel Better’ Charitable Program. She was
also awarded the ‘Light of India Award for Excellence in Arts and
Entertainment’. She speaks about her journey, dreams, challenges she faced in
her life and inspires others to achieve their dreams
When Speaking Minds was founded in 2007 in New Zealand, little did we envisage that this would grow into an international brand with offices in India and London in less than a decade. We set up the business to share what we had learnt, from the privileges we have had in our jobs – of access to knowledge.
Bringing India to the rest of the world was our driving force.
The dna of our business is genuinely about sharing knowledge with the
world, from thought leaders and experts who are notable achievers in
their field. Raga D'silva quit her highly successful corporate career in
New Zealand in 2007, to set up a dream business of connecting
knowledge, insights, motivation from exceptional talent with the
corporate world, globally.