This Is Rutherford
Incredible Indians, Book Written by former Rutherford Resident
By Jennifer Ersalesi
Photo credits: Kanchi Doshi
In an effort to represent Indian culture and successful Indian individuals who have inspired generations, Kanchi Doshi, a former Rutherford resident, wrote a book entitled Incredible Indians. She wrote the book with her husband, Anish Doshi, who also shared the same goals to represent Indian culture in picture books to inspire children and educate them about inspirational Indians. This is Rutherford interviewed Kanchi to learn more about the book and her upbringing in Rutherford.
TIR: You grew up in Rutherford. Which schools did you attend?
Kanchi Doshi: Pierrepont and Rutherford High School.
TIR: Do you have any favorite memories of growing up in Rutherford?
KD: I absolutely loved spending time on Park Avenue.
TIR: Your children’s picture book Incredible Indians was recently released on Amazon. What inspired you to write this book?
KD: After having our two young girls, we realized how little representation of Indian individuals there is in children's books. We wanted to find a way to expose our daughters to successful and talented Indian individuals that reached great heights.
TIR: Can you tell us more about the co-author of this book?
KD: My husband, Anish Doshi, a wonderful father to our girls and an anesthesiologist, takes pride in being an Indian American. He enjoys cricket and football, enjoys dosas and pizza, and celebrates Holi and Halloween. His passion for cultural experiences is evident in that he spent five months circumnavigating the world by ship.
TIR: What kind of research did you do to put this book together?
KD: We did a good amount of fact-finding and verification in addition to speaking with individuals that may have had knowledge about each of the individuals that we wanted to feature. Through our research and discussions, we not only learned so much about the individuals we had planned on featuring, but we also discovered people we had not known. This process was enlightening and gave us the opportunity to thoughtfully decide who we wanted to feature and how we wanted to represent them, in order to best highlight their achievements and inspire children. This was something we wanted to do on a grassroots level and it has truly been a labor of love.
TIR: Steffi Stanley was your illustrator. How do her illustrations help you tell the stories of the people in the book?
KD: Steffi's illustrations are bold, vivid, and very life-like. They capture the attention of children. The details in her drawings often initiate additional conversation between the parent and the child. The drawings speak to children of all ages.
TIR: You have children of your own, what do you hope they gain from reading this book with you?
KD: We hope that they are inspired to reach for their dreams while embracing their Indian roots. We hope that they learn from the diverse representation of males and females, professions and vocations, both past and present, and are inspired by the strong, successful, and globally recognized individuals. It has been special to read this book to them and share our heritage and culture with our girls.