ICAI San Francisco chair Geetha Ramakrishnan dies at 47

Ritu Jha-

Geetha Ramakrishnan, chairperson of the San Francisco chapter of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI), died May 10. She was 47 and is survived by her spouse Suresh Raman and their nine-year-old son Krishna.

While it was known that Geetha Ramakrishnan was suffering from an autoimmune disorder, her sudden passing shocked the ICAI fraternity.

She had served as director at Capetals ESG, based in San Francisco, an independent advisory firm that provides tactical and strategic support to clients on ESG-related initiatives.

According to her LinkedIn profile, she was a senior management professional with more than 25 years of experience in the finance and accounting industry.

She was also on the boards of national and international companies. She served as a director at Indusgeeks and as a board member and vice-president, finance, since 2011 at the India-based Boopathy Group.

Vish Arunachalam, founder chairman and director of ICAI’s San Francisco chapter, told indica that Geetha Ramakrishnan played a key role in the expansion of the institute’s footprint in the USA.

“The ICAI [in the U.S.] was established in 2017 and we are in 11 regions and about to expand to six more in July 2022,” he said. “She was a charismatic speaker and moderator.”

In a statement, Arunachalam said: “We grieve the passing away of our colleague and cherished dear friend, Geetha Ramakrishnan, on May 10, 2022. Geetha passed away after she had suffered illness in recent months. She will always be remembered for her contributions to ICAI San Francisco chapter since its inception in 2017.

“We will all miss the good-hearted soul more than words can express,” he added. “We pray to the almighty to give strength to her dear and loved ones to get through this difficult and testing time. May God rest her soul in peace.”

Nilesh S Vikamsey, past president of the ICAI, said he had met Geetha Ramakrishnan at the launch of the San Francisco chapter in early 2017 and later at a few international conferences in India. “She was one of the pillars of the San Francisco chapter and worked solidly with Vish and other colleagues in laying the foundation of not only the San Francisco chapter but also the representative offices in other cities in the U.S,” he said.

He said he learnt of her hospitalization a few weeks ago. “God had other plans for her,” he remarked. “The profession has lost one of its best brand ambassadors abroad.”

Sripriya Kumar, ICAI Central Council member, described Geetha Ramakrishnan as a “phenomenal woman in every sense of the word who lived life on her terms, took setbacks in her stride, and was ever cheerful. She had an amazing sense of humor and was articulate and super fun to be with.”

Nilesh Shah, ICAI member, said he was “very sad” to learn of Geetha’s untimely and tragic death. “In 2017, I was introduced to Geetha during a networking event hosted by the San Francisco chapter of the ICAI,” he recalled. “Over the years, I served alongside her on the management committee of the chapter. She was a constant support and source of inspiration for the chapter. I last met with her Jan 22, when we shared the stage at an event hosted by the consulate. She will be sorely missed by all those who were fortunate to have known her personally and professionally.”