For over half a century, Dr.Bala V Balachandran, or “Uncle Bala” as he is fondly known, has served higher education with great distinction and is one of the best known names in Indian management education. A renowned Professor of Accounting and Information Management at Kellogg School of Business, USA, Dr.Bala set up Great Lakes Institute of Management in 2004 at Chennai, fulfilling his ardent desire to develop a centre of educational excellence in the land of his birth. Great Lakes entered the list of the Top 10 Business Schools in India in just 10 years, the youngest college to ever do so. Dr.Bala was also instrumental in the setting up of the ISB at Hyderabad at the turn of the century, setting up of the MBA Programs at MDI Gurgaon in the 90s and hiring of the initial faculty at IIM Bangalore in the late 60s. Never satisfied with his laurels, Dr.Bala brings his vision and energy to the vital field of undergraduate education as Chairman of Great Lakes Colleges, Gurgaon. Dr.Bala is an advisor to some of India’s top companies and ministries and was conferred the Padma Shri in 2001 in recognition of his contribution to higher education.
Dr. Parag Diwan, graduated in Chemical Engineering from Punjab University, went to Clemson University USA and acquired his Masters in Chemical Engineering. He subsequently received his Masters and Doctorate in Business Administration from Punjab University.
In 1993, with almost a decade’s worth of corporate experience, Dr. Diwan was invited to join All India Management Association (AIMA). As a young Dean and Director, he established the Centre for Management Education, using multi-modal information and communication technologies to deliver business education to working adults at their place and time of convenience. He is widely accredited for building AIMA-CME as the then largest distributed business school.
In 2003, Dr. Diwan co-founded University of Petroleum and Energy Studies (UPES) and by assuming the role of Vice Chancellor, created history by becoming the youngest professional Vice Chancellor in the country. During his tenure of 12 years at UPES, he built the University from Greenfield stage to a very successful private university specializing in Energy, Infrastructure and Transportation (EIT) domain. He has won many awards and accolades in his career, notable among them are, the first “Education Evangelist” of India Award; the prestigious World Oil Award for the “Outstanding Petroleum University” at Texas, USA, and “Outstanding Leadership Award” by Oil and Gas Foundation.
Prior to joining the prestigious Great Lakes Education Group to drive their new initiatives, Dr. Diwan worked on international assignments with Laureate International Universities, in Mexico, Malaysia, Cyprus and Turkey to help start programs in the energy domain.
Mr. Mohan Lakhamraju, a CS B.Tech from IIT Mumbai, MS from the University of California, Berkeley and MBA from Stanford, is the Vice Chairman and CEO of Great Lakes Institute of Management. Over the past 6 years, he helped grow Great Lakes into a top ranked institution, set up its second campus in Gurgaon and also launched and built Great Learning, its online and blended learning platform. In a short span of 3 years, Great Learning has become the leader in hybrid executive education in India with its flagship Business Analytics program being ranked #1 in the country. As Vice-Chairman of Great Lakes College, Gurgaon, Mohan looks to actuate his vision of developing a world-class undergraduate experience in India that develops a strong multi-dimensional personality, intellectual curiosity and a purposeful problem-solving attitude in its graduates. Prior to his distinguished service in higher education, Mohan served as Managing Director, India at Tiger Global, a leading global investment firm. He also spent close to 10 years in Silicon Valley, first a founding member at Stratify, now acquired by HP and then as a Venture Capitalist at Draper Fisher Jurvetson (DFJ). He serves on the board of several technology firms, mentoring entrepreneurs.