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Chair | Rumi Sethna
Rumi was elected as the Chairman of WZO on the 7 February 2021. Rumi and his wife Hilda have tirelessly volunteered and raised substantial funds for the Zoroastrian community worldwide.
Rumi and Hilda joined WZO in 1986 and turned their own home into its Headquarters from where the Gujarat farmers project operated from 1990. They travelled to India filming the conditions of poor Zoroastrian farmers and families to arouse awareness worldwide. Their work impacted on many lives.
With perseverance and commitment for over 20 years they have raised more than £200,000 towards various WZO projects and donated generously to the establishment of the World Zoroastrian House in London. Hilda and Rumi have hosted many Gala Dinner Dances in aid of the charitable activities of WZO, and have devoted much time and energy to the Organisation.
President | Zerbanoo Gifford
President of WZO Zerbanoo is a human rights campaigner, author and founder of The ASHA Centre www.ashacentre.org.
Holder of the International Woman of the Year and the Nehru centenary award for her humanitarian work, which spans over fifty years of grassroots and global activism.
Pioneer for Asian Women in British politics, in 1982 she made history by being elected a Councillor in Harrow and was the first BAME woman to stand for parliament. Zerbanoo chaired the Commission ‘Looking into ethnic minority involvement in British Life’ and was a member of the committee advising the British Home Secretary.
Director of Anti-Slavery International, she was given the Freedom of the City of Lincoln, Nebraska, for combating modern slavery and later received the International Splendour Award in Hollywood, for her lifetime achievements in the field of equality. To celebrate the 90th Anniversary of American Suffrage, she was honoured by the Sewall-Belmont Museum in Washington DC commemorating key women who have advanced women’s rights.
In 2022 at the World Zoroastrian Congress, she was presented with the Global Entrepreneur Award. There she launched www.zasha.info as a celebration of the diversity and talents of Zoroastrian women worldwide.
Author of seven books, her latest book is ‘Z to A of Zoroastrianism: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Living’ which was distributed to the delegates at the last World Zoroastrian Congress in New York.
Zerbanoo’s biography ‘An Uncensored Life’ is published Harper Collins.
Vice-President | Shirin Mehri
Shirin Mehri joined the committee in 2021, and was appointed editor of the WZO's Hamazor magazine. She has now been elected Vice President and WZO is very proud to have a young person step up to take on the role of VP of the organisation.
Shirin's passion for an equitable educational and social landscape continues to be evident in her professional and volunteer work. After successfully completing projects in education in the United States and the UAE, Shirin was leading projects on family-friendly workplaces and Pakistan's investment landscape in partnership with the IFC at the Pakistan Business Council. She has recently joined the Undergraduate Education office at Habib University, Pakistan's leading liberal arts institution and aims to work with the HU community to enhance their student experiences.
Shirin was also the Team Lead at Green Box working with youth to equip them with the right skills needed for solutions to challenges in the 21st century.
Shirin holds a Master’s degree in Entrepreneurial Leadership from Babson College and an undergraduate degree in Economics & Finance from SUNY Plattsburgh.
Hon. Treasurer | Dinyar Modi
Dinyar, an accountant by profession, is entrusted with the record keeping of all financial transactions of WZO and he is also instrumental in the creation of the annual reports and company house rules and regulation, Articles and Memorandum matters. He is responsible for the SORP accounting and regulatory requirements for charitable bodies. He has served on the WZO board since 1996.
Hon. Secretary | Benafsha Engineer - Mulla
Benafsha worked in the aviation industry, before taking a career break to fulfil her role as a mother. She joined the committee in 2008 and has assisted with the social events and is currently the Secretary. She has represented WZO at the World Zoroastrian Youth Congress and has taken part at the European Interfaith Youth Congress. Benafsha would like to encourage young members to join the committee, as she believes the future of our community lies with the younger generation.
Jt. Social Secretary | Armaity R Engineer
Armaity joined the WZO committee in 2007. She has experience in the Hospitality industry and is a Director at Feast Foods Limited. She is currently the Joint Social Secretary and organizes events and fund-raising activities for WZO. Armaity believes in spreading the word of our religion and raising awareness for the various Charitable projects WZO supports. She has orchestrated outstanding events at prestigious venues and her reputation for excellent taste is well established. Armaity played an instrumental role in the purchasing, planning and refurbishments of World Zoroastrian House.
Jt. Social Secretary | Manijeh Parki
Manijeh has been a very active and energetic Committee Member since 2015. She is of Iranian descent and as one of the Social Secretaries, she ensures that the community participate in the Zoroastrian festivals in the traditional way. She organises Nowruz, Jashne Sadeh, Tirgan etc. events for WZO as well as some interesting lectures. She is truly an asset to the WZO. Outside of WZO, she has been organising Youth Camps and Iranian cultural events for Zoroastrians since 2009.
Religious Coordinator | Shahin Bekhradnia
Shahin Bekhradnia was born in Britain of Iranian Zoroastrian parents and brought up to appreciate her religious Yazdi heritage and community history. After completing both undergraduate and post graduate degrees at Oxford university, she started a successful 6th form and language school in Oxford. She has written numerous articles and given talks about Zoroastrianism. Shahin is an active environmentalist, and actively involved in interfaith activities. She represents Zoroastrians in official contexts such as immigration. Currently she is working with the Afghan resettlement programme. Shahin has been invited to return to the magistracy, and is on the Youth Offending panel. She continues with occasional teaching.
President, WZO US Region | Kayomarsh Mehta
Kayomarsh and his wife Nergish are the founder members of ‘Zarathushti Learning Center of North America’. The Learning Institute disseminates teachings of Zoroastrian religion with a goal of offering university level courses in Zoroastrianism. He conducts regular E-Learning classes on the internet and disseminates his lessons on Zoroastrianism to over 600 interested individuals all over the world.
He shares his knowledge of Zoroastrianism with his fellow Zoroastrians, as well as non-Zoroastrian audiences. He is a regular host to college and university students of Comparative Religions.
Past Chair of Religion Education Committee of Federation of Zoroastrian Associations of North America, FEZANA. He established a Uniform Curriculum of Zoroastrian Education for all the Zoroastrian Associations in North America. He is the recipient of the FEZANA Outstanding Zoroastrian Award for his ongoing contributions to the Zoroastrian community of North America.
Kayomarsh is the current President of ‘World Zoroastrian Organization US Region’ and is involved with the various worldwide philanthropic activities of WZO. He is the Trustee, an active Board Member and past President of the Zoroastrian Association of Metropolitan Chicago.
He is currently self-employed as a Financial Advisor and a Broker. having worked for thirty years for Union Carbide as a finance director and engineer.
President, WZO New Zealand | Darius S Mistry
Darius was born and bought up in Mumbai and settled with his family in New Zealand in 1987.
For the first 14 years he worked with International Corporations. like Siemens, Wang Computers, Apple Computers, H. P. Computers. In 1994, he became the M.D. of his own IT Systems business, Imagetext Systems Integrators.
He enjoys motorcycling, cricket & rugby during his spare time.
Darius is an active Rotarian for over 15 years, and is currently on the Rotary Club Board. He is also a member and visitor for Age Concern. Darius is a Trustee of WZO-NZ Trust funds for over 20 years. He is also a founder member of the Zoroastrian Association of New Zealand. Current He also ran a local Scout troop as a Scout Master for 3 years and enjoys motorcycling and cricket and rugby in his spare time. Darius also started a Business Mentorship programme in conjunction with the Auckland Chamber of Commerce and his Rotary club.
Youth Co-ordinator | Ervad Jimmy Madon
Born and brought up in Mumbai, India, Ervad Jimmy Khushroo Madon moved to the United Kingdom for Higher Education. He has a Masters in Software Engineering from the University of Oxford and works as a Software Engineer, currently on a project with Google. He further enjoys transferring this passion for the subject by giving part-time lectures in Software Engineering at various universities in the UK.
He was ordained a Zoroastrian priest at the age of 12 and has carried out liturgical ceremonies for the Zoroastrian community across five continents.
As a Director of the World Zoroastrian Organisation and the ex-Secretary for the Young Zoroastrians of the UK (ZTFE’s youth group), he continues to speak to and engage with the Zoroastrian community in the UK and around the world. He has also been volunteering as a teacher at the religious educational classes in London for kids and parents for over 10 years.
He believes that Zoroastrianism or one’s religion should be a practical way of life and presented this topic at the 6th and 7th World Zoroastrian Youth Congresses in Auckland, New Zealand and Los Angeles, USA respectively. He has featured in a BBC World Service’s story as a young priest sharing his thoughts on Zoroastrianism while continuing his own passions as well as on the BBC Asian Network radio and other local BBC channels at various community events.
Darayus Motivala has been a committee member of WZO since 1994 and has held several posts including Chair, President, Company Secretary and Membership Secretary. He now works with a number of the other Committee members on a variety of projects and with WZO’s Administrative Assistant. Darayus played a major role in finding and procuring the current WZO office in Feltham and then later in its refurbishment.
Darayus is one of the earliest IT graduates (1972) and has worked in the IT sector for 30 years, predominantly in a Sales & Marketing role. In 2002, he made a career change and moved into hospitality, owning a themed restaurant and a café.
Darayus is passionate about equality for all and on the environment. He attends a number of InterFaith events locally. He is a Trustee for his local MS Centre (Chilterns MS Centre) which is one of the largest in the country. He also chairs their commercial subsidiary which ploughs back all its profits into the charity.
Darayus lives in an Oxfordshire village with his wife who is confined to a wheelchair due to Multiple Sclerosis (MS).
Rustam Soli Dubash is a consultant in the English law firm, Penningtons Manches Cooper LLP, where he specialises in commercial dispute resolution matters and was the co-founder of the India group at the firm. He was the first Asian/Indian lawyer to become a partner at the firm.
Rustam was born in Bombay and studied at Campion School and at Sydenham College (B. Com) and Government Law (LLB), University of Bombay. Rustam came to England in 1979 and passed his English solicitors’ examination in 1984.
Rustam was a committee member of WZO from October 1992 to September 2006, during which period, he served as joint secretary and as President supporting Rumi Sethna and the late Sammy Bhiwandiwalla during their tenure as Chairman of WZO. He re-joined the committee in 2021. Rustam was involved in several WZO projects during this period, including being heavily involved in 2003/2004 in the formation of a World Body to include individuals and federations.
Rustam is a trustee of the World Zarathrustrian Trust Funds
Rustam is married with two adult daughters.
Prof. Dr. Zenobia Nadirshaw MBE
Prof Zenobia Nadirshaw is a Consultant Clinical Psychologist and with 3 Honorary Doctorates and 2 Professorships at 2 different Universities in UK. She has over 45 years of experience of working in the English NHS. She is and Honorary Life Fellow and Lifetime Achievement award from The British Psychological Society in 2017. In 2019 she was presented with an MBE by Prince William at Buckingham Palace.
Dastur Dr Kersey H. Antia, U.S.A
Dastur Dr Kersi Antia is a founding member of WZO, when he became aware of the need to offer international help to Iranian Zoroastrians after 1979. Being a professional psychologist and priest -scholar of Zoroastrianism, he serves his community in USA. He started his research in his teens and has continued to write and lecture widely on the universal philosophy of Zarathusthra, helping to deliver both the educational and supportive mission of the WZO. Previously, Kersey was the Vice-President of WZO for many years.
Maneck Bhujwala, U.S.A
Maneck Bhujwala was born to Navroji and Meherbai, in Bombay, India, and came to the United States in 1965 as a graduate student. He married Mahrukh Raimalwalla and has a daughter Shehnaz who is a Partner in a Law firm in Los Angeles. He has Master’s degrees in Engineering, Business Administration, and Interfaith Action. He worked as engineer and manager for many high-tech companies in California and Texas, including on a NASA project. He co-founded two Zarathushti (Zoroastrian) organizations and one Indian organization (Society for Rapid Advancement of India) in California, and served on their Boards.
Currently he is Overseas Director of the World Zoroastrian Organization U.K., and serves as a volunteer priest for Parsi and Iranian communities. He has been with the Greater Huntington Beach Interfaith Council (GHBIC) since 2005 and currently serves as president. He also serves on the Boards of Orange County Interfaith Network, and North American Interfaith Network, on the Administrative Committee of the Center for Religion, Loma Linda University, and on the Advisory Council of The Guibord Center, Los Angeles. He gives talks at schools, colleges, churches, interfaith organizations, radio and TV, Zarathushti Congresses, and at Parliaments of World Religions.
Dr Parmis Khatibi, U.S.A
Dr Parmis Khatibi is a daughter of educators and was exposed to and embraced science early. Americans are living longer, thanks to medical advancements, but they’re often unable to access or afford care. Teaching and treating the underserved is also in her DNA. She spends her days with patients fighting opioid addiction and other life-threatening diseases. Away from the clinic, she’s fighting stereotypes and lifting up young women. Dr. Khatibi is a leading expert on mental health and wellness services. She provides clinical care to the most vulnerable community members suffering from mental health and addiction.
Parmis is engaged in solving some of the most pressing issues of our global economy and has served as Chairwoman for the World Affairs Council of Orange County, an Orange County Board of Supervisors Appointee to the HIV Planning Council, and is currently the statewide President for California Woman's Leadership Association and Chair, Generations Council of Farhang Foundation. Parmis is a WZO committee member since January 2011.
Kersi Shroff, U.S.A
Mr. Kersi B. Shroff, Attorney (USA), Barrister (England), is on the managing committee of the World Zoroastrian Organization, Director of Society of Scholars of Zoroastrianism, and co-chair of Federation of Zoroastrian Associations of North America’s Committee on Research Preservation.
Kersi is founding member of the Zoroastrian Association of Metropolitan Washington (1979) and was the President. He is active in interfaith relations and works on the Executive Committee of Faith Advisory Group, and Religious Land Use Working Group, Montgomery County, Maryland, USA.
Kersi has made presentations on the history and archaeology of the Silk Road in Central Asia. He has volunteered at archaeological sites in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan (2013 -2019). In 2018, he led a study tour of Zoroastrian sites in Azerbaijan. As member of Program Committee, 12th World Zoroastrian Congress, July 2 - 4, 2022, Kersi contributed to the development of several presentations, and was moderator and panelist of “Zoroastrian Digital Humanities”.
He has spoken at several Parliaments of World Religions, testified before the U.S. Congress, United Nations, U.S. Federal Courts, and authored many published articles.
Ervad Dr Jehan Bagli, Canada
Jehan has been involved in the affairs of WZO since 2003 when he was elected to the International Board. Being interested in interfaith activities, he has assisted WZO representatives in that area. He was Vice-President of WZO during the years 2008-2010. To participate in the efforts to alleviate poverty and further the knowledge base of the community at large, Jehan took the initiative to establish ‘WZO Canada’ in the hope of fulfilling some of these goals. Jehan was President of WZO Canada until a few years ago when we stepped down to look after his wife.
Mr. Fariborz Rahnamoon, Canada
Fariborz Rahnamoon was born in Yazd and educated in a Catholic school in Bombay. His exposure to the Bible instigated him to research his religion while in high school. He has a unique perspective on the Zarathushti religion and history, resulting from over 40 years of research. He says, “the Zarathushti history that has come down to us has been written by its adversaries over the last 2000 years, and the Avesta has been deciphered and translated by western scholars with preconceived Greek/Abrahamic ideology, thereby leading us astray.” His finding and views are available on his website. www.ancientiran.com
He is in the process of translating the Gathas, and it is available on his website, www.gathas.ca. Since 2015 Fariborz has compiled and published the Mazdayasni Calendar based on the Bundahishn, and it is available at www.zarathushticalendar.com
He has served the community as- Youth Director of Sazeman Javanan Zarthusti, Bombay. Editor of Iran Zamin, a bilingual magazine (2000 - 2008). Chair Person of the Arbab Rostam Guiv Trust Vancouver for 26 years, Director and President of ZSBC, International director WZCC, Director Mehraban & Paridokht Zartoshty Education Funds, Chapter Chair WZCC BC, Director WZO.
Homi R Khusrokhan, India
Homi Khusrokhan worked for 29 years with Glaxo & Burroughs Wellcome in India and retired in 2000 as MD. In 1999, Glaxo-Wellcome was ranked ‘The Most Respected Company in India’ across all categories by Business World. In 2001 he moved to The Tata Group and was appointed MD of Tata Tea and later Tata Chemicals, both ranked 2nd in their industries, globally. After retiring from Tata Chemicals, he was appointed a Special Adviser to the Government-appointed Board of Satyam Computer Services Ltd. in February 2009, to assist with the turn-round of the company and induction of a new strategic investor.
He serves as an Independent Director on the Boards of several companies and is a trustee on the Board of 2 hospitals and a Secondary School in Mumbai. He is a Senior Adviser, Private Equity to Tata Capital, Chairman of the Western Region of the Employers Federation of India and Chairman of the Indian Red Cross Society for Maharashtra and a member of the IRCS National Council. Homi has been a WZO Committee member since 2009.
Meher Amersey, India
Meher Amersey was born in Bombay in 1943 to Aloo and Hoshang Tata.
Meher studied at the prestigious Cathedral and John Conon School, followed by two years at Xaviers College.
A keen athlete, golfer and known for her outstanding social work including being President of the Time and Talents Club working for those with disadvantages.
Meher is the Founder President of the Association of In-Married Zoroastrians (AIMZ) founded in1990, to preserve and protect the rights and privileges of women of inter-faith marriages.
AIMZ was instrumental in ensuring that women of inter-faith marriages to rightly worship at the fire temples and have their last rites performed at the Tower of Silence after a long battle.
In 1964 Meher was selected by the Ministry of Commerce, Government of India, to represent India at the New York World Fair 1964-1965.
Meher married Purshottam Amersey in 1974 and has two children, Shalini and Harshavadan.
Russi M. Ghadiali, Singapore
Russi has lived in Singapore for around 40 years where he has served as the President/Vice President of the Zoroastrian community many times. He hopes to keep the local Zoroastrian community united. Active in Interfaith activities in S E Asia, his services to the wider community received national recognition recently from the Prime Minister of Singapore.
President, WZO Canada | Sam Vesuna
Resident Priest | Ervad Fali Madon
Fali Khushroo Madon was born and brought up in Mumbai, India.
He was ordained as a priest in 2000 when he underwent the ‘Navar’ ceremony and then underwent the ‘Martab’ ceremony in 2003. These qualified him to carry out the higher liturgical ceremonies for the Zoroastrian community.
He has been performing ‘Jashans’, ‘Navjotes’, weddings, funerals and other after death ceremonies for the community all over India and abroad for almost 23 years. He was a part-time priest for many years whilst at school, university and latterly at his job at Godrej and Boyce Manufacturing Company Limited as an Octroi Officer. In 2013, he decided to give his full commitment to priesthood and went on to become the ‘Panthaky’ (Managing Head Priest) of the Seth Jeejeebhoy Dadabhoy Agiary in Colaba, Mumbai for 4 years. He was one of the youngest priests to become Panthaky at that time.
In addition to his duties as a Panthaky, he performed ceremonies for the family ‘Panthak’ (clientele) and for clients which have been nurtured for over 4 decades by the long line of priests within my family. he also performed the ‘Boi’ (“serving the fire”) and all other services on a freelance basis at many of the other fire-temples in India. He has performed ceremonies for the wealthy and has volunteered his services to many poor families, particularly those who help maintain our fire temples and Towers of Silence.
Fali enjoys teaching Zoroastrian prayers and their significance to young prospective initiates and others interested to learn more about the religion.
Administrative Assistant | Anahita Madon
Anahita is married to WZO’s resident Priest, Fali, and lives with him in the flat at WZO’s office. She was born into a priestly family.
She has a B. Com degree from the University of Mumbai and an Executive Assistant’s Diploma from the Davar’s College of Commerce. These skills make her the ideal candidate for her duties at WZO.
Anahita’s duties at WZO include maintaining the membership database, sending out the Newsletter emails and updating WZO’s website and their social media outlets. She helps Fali with his priestly duties and maintaining the premises. She also helps WZO’s Social Secretaries with the various social and cultural events held there.