|Affiliation||Christian People's Alliance
London, , United Kingdom
|| 00, 1951
Feb 07, 2007 12:12pm
African - Asian - Christian -
|Info||Ram came to England in 1967, arriving with his parents and family at a windy and cheerless Heathrow. Like thousands of other East African Asians, they had been expelled from Kenya. In Africa the Gidoomals had owned large and prosperous business interests, but all they were allowed to take out with them was �2,000. A traumatic change of circumstances for young Ram, who had been the first non-Muslim Head Boy of the prestigious Aga Khan School in Mombassa. Now he joined the new intake of the Christopher Wren Comprehensive School, Shepherds Bush. |
The Gidoomals bought a small newsagents business: fifteen of them lived in four rooms above the shop. Ram was expected to work in the shop after school and do his homework as well. In a classic example of South Asian entrepreneurism, the newsagency flourished and soon became a chain of shops. Ram was able to enter further education. He read Physics at Imperial College, was offered a Government Research Fellowship and went on to become an Operations Research Analyst at Lloyds Bank International.
In 1978 Ram became Deputy Group Chief Executive at the Inlaks Group Head Office in Geneva. Inlaks (a multi-national niche marketing corporation) appointed him UK Group Chief Executive and Group Vice Chairman in 1985. His responsibilities included overseeing the acquisition of seven speciality seafood units in Scotland.
While a student, Ram began to read the Bible and became a follower of Jesus Christ � thus he is someone born into a Hindu family, raised up in the Sikh faith, educated at a Muslim School and now a member of the Christian church: this has given him wide rapport with the various faith communities of London. He also met and married Sunita. They have three children and their home is in Sutton.
In 1988, while on a business trip to India, Ram was taken to see the Mumbai slums, the worst in Asia. The experience changed him profoundly, and on his return to England he resigned his directorship and devoted himself to work in the voluntary and public sectors � in which he still spends the majority of his working time. A year later he became Founding Chairman of Christmas Cracker Charitable Trust, which mobilised 50,000 young people to raise �5 million for the developing world. In the 1990s he was appointed to senior roles in public sector organisations such as South London Training and Enterprise Council and the Cabinet Office�s Better Regulation Task Force, and founded Business Link London South. His charitable activities included Founder Chairman, South Asian Concern and member of the London Executive of Race for Opportunity.
In 1998 Ram was appointed CBE for services to the business community and race relations. In 2000 he was elected leader of the Christian Peoples Alliance and stood as party candidate in the first mayoral elections, gaining almost 100,000 votes.
Ram�s public sector and charitable appointments are numerous. He retains some private sector interests, his directorships including those of NASDAQ-quoted Syntel lnc and Postmasternet.
Besides his CBE, Ram holds honorary degrees from Bristol and Middlesex University, and from Southampton Institute. He is Visiting Professor of Entrepreneurship and Inner City Regeneration at Middlesex University, and is also on the Court of Luton University. He is a school governor and is a Crown appointee of Court & Council, Imperial College.
He is a Board Member of the Covent Garden Market Authority, the London First Centre and the Companions of the Chartered Management Institute.
He is a Freeman of the City of London and a Court Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Information Technologists.