April Member Spotlight: Meena Chettiar

Please join me in celebrating our April member spotlight, Meena Chettiar! Meena has been involved with MNASQ for many years as a past Chair of the section as a current Director. Thank you, Meena, for your dedication to quality and for all of the lives and careers that you continue to affect through your leadership in our section!

6eb7b71ba7eaa599d40bf2c69ab968f6-huge-meHighest academic degree
MS (RAS) from St. Cloud State University and M. A. Sc (Chemical Engineering) from University of British Columbia

Current occupation
Director of Medical Device Quality and Third Party Logistics at Welly health PBC

Is there a teacher or mentor who influenced you more than others?
Dr. Ken Manning, VP of Quality at Teva Pharma who I reported to at one point as a Senior Quality Manager most influenced my career. Ken was very fair minded. He had good work ethics, was a high-quality human being and a sharp and classy professional!

How were you introduced to the quality field?
Through ASQ’s certification for CQA (Certified Quality Associate) while I was working as a QC Scientist in a pharmaceutical company by Jackie Torfin, who was the QA Director at my company 20 years ago.

What is the best career advice you have received?
We can only grow by taking additional responsibilities and continuous learning. Not just doing what’s on our Job description well.

Have you had any previous jobs you consider noteworthy?
  • I worked as a Chemist for Health Canada Laboratories in Winnipeg, Canada where I tested soup to nuts for preservatives and chemical composition and vegetables for pesticides and fertilizers.
  • I have done several quality audits at manufacturing plants from India, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Canada and many plants and laboratories in the United States.

What ASQ activities are you involved in?
I am currently on the MNASQ board as Scholarship Chair and help the education committee with teaching Certification Preparation Courses. I have served for several years as a Director, Chair of MNASQ and Education committee and as the past Chair of MNASQ.

How has being a MNASQ member been valuable in your career?
As a member of MNASQ, I got certified as CQA, CMQ/OE, CQIA and CMDA and all these certifications to this day continue to help me in my career immensely. I have been teaching for MNASQ’s Certification preparation sessions giving back to my community and keeping the knowledge current for about 15-20 years. I have helped students overseas pass ASQ certifications through my voluntary help via LinkedIn. My biggest joy is when my students call/email me to say: “I passed the ASQ exam!”. In addition to serving on MNASQ Board, I got to learn and grow with several world class passionate quality professionals. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to be part of MNASQ family.

What activities or achievements outside of ASQ do you think are noteworthy?
I serve as a Scholarship Chair for Plymouth Rotary, and I was the Scholarship Chair for MFEST (MN Federation of Engineers, Scientists and Technologists). I love to nurture education and continuous learning. I have been serving as an adjunct instructor for Medical Technology Quality Master’s program at St. Cloud State University for over 10 years.

Do you have any recent publications or awards you would like to highlight?
  • I have published a book called “Immigration Success, Give Yourself the Best Opportunity in Any Country Including Your Own”, available on Amazon. Proceeds from this book go towards an annual scholarship for graduating high school students through my nonprofit, MN Shakthi Global Foundation.
  • I was awarded the Distinguished Scientist Award by MFEST in 2019.
  • I was the co author of CMDA Primer and solution text by Quality council of Indiana. This involved several hours of burning the midnight oil!
  • I have published articles in Scientific Journals such as “ Canadian Journal of Chemical Engineers”.

3aab2f36df8d2ca48c532aaa58f6936b-huge-meWhat brought you to or keeps you in the Minnesota region?
My job, family, my friends, the highly ethical work community in MN, it’s beautiful lakes and fantastic summers (I will refrain from talking about our frigid winters as I plan to become a snowbird soon)

What are your favorite ways to relax?
I am an avid gardener and love walking around the 10,000 lakes in MN. I love to read and write and watch PBS. My favorite book is “Tuesdays with Morrie” by Mitch Album. Favorite movie: the classics, Sound of Music, and Mary Poppins.
I am a meditator and an avid member and teacher for the Art of Living Foundation. Sri Ravishankar is my favorite blogger.
News Minnesota Section 04/04/2022 7:40am CDT


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