In conversation with Gauthami Vemula-Queij, founder of Color Me SAFE, LLC., social entrepreneur, activist, community leader and volunteer.
Inspiration Masters, LLC is dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of people on the planet by helping everyone find their purpose and passion in life, and then help with tools, techniques, and strategies to reach their true purpose in life by following their passion.
As a part of our “Inspiring Series,” we invite the difference makers, entrepreneurs, artists, business owners, and individuals who have interesting stories to share which can inspire everyone.
This week we got the privilege to meet Gauthami Vemula-Queij, founder of Color Me SAFE, social entrepreneur, activist, community leader, and volunteer. Gauthami graduated with Masters’ Degrees in both Psychology and Counseling. She is currently completing a Child Protection course at Harvard University. Ten years as an CPS investigator, and Department and Quality Training Manager at the Department of Child Protective Services helped her see the inequity and shortfalls of the system, leading her to found Color Me SAFE, LLC a family crisis management consulting firm in Dallas, Texas, specializing in child welfare issues.
As Founder, President and an active consultant, she provides a voice for underrepresented families, especially immigrants, going through the CPS system and raises awareness about the child welfare laws of Texas, child abuse and neglect and bullying prevention/intervention.
Gauthami is also the CoFounder of UGauGrrl (you go girl), a t-shirt line for wearable inspiration and movement to INSPIRE, EMPOWER, and IMPACT women and girls everywhere to tap into their gifts so they make their singular impact on the world.
Gauthami’s previous experience as a child abuse investigator and department manager at the Department of Child Protective Services has strongly made her aware of child abuse/neglect. As a Child Welfare Consultant and activist. Ms. Vemula passionately works towards raising awareness about child abuse/neglect. She was one of only three investigators hand-picked from Dallas County for a special pilot program, the Skilled Response Team, that investigated more than 40 child abuse cases a month. She was also selected as one of the few in Texas to train new CPS Investigators. In addition to her work in the field, Ms. Vemula was integral in co-authoring Dallas County’s policy and procedure handbook used by all CPS Investigators. She also helped to create a systematic method called ‘Tips, Tools, and Tactics,’ specifically utilized by newly trained CPS Investigators.
In her spare time, she brings her love of music to young students as a classical piano teacher. She even tried her hand at another musical aspiration, studying voice under opera singer and performer Ronana Gales. She also co-hosts the YouTube series Social Issues Time, or S.I.T., a forum for females of all ages, backgrounds and ethnicities to come together and talk about issues that are relevant in today’s multicultural society. She also published her first children’s book called, Ganesha Goes to First Grade and is inspired to begin writing her second book. Gauthami also shares her thoughts on being a first-generation Indian American woman balancing two different cultures on her satirical blog Wheatish Complexion (www.wheatishcomplexion.com). She produced the video series Gau Go Story time with Color Me SAFE, and co-produced the ChikChaaat podcast series with two friends, which they describe as “three strong perspectives with a whole lot of sass”. Gauthami is an active volunteer in the community – volunteering at local food banks, soup kitchens to raising the basic necessities for the homeless population.
Gauthami holds and has held leadership positions in several organizations, including Board Member for Empowering Women as Leaders (EWL) and Hope’s Door; served as a steering committee member for the Dallas Women’s Foundation XIX Society, a mentor and advisory council member at the Irma Lerma Rangel Young Women’s Leadership School; a sponsorship secretary for HEAL, has volunteered her time as a teacher at Chinmaya Mission of DFW, and has been an Ambassador for nonprofit Against the Grain Productions. She also served on the advisory council for Refugee Services of Texas, Family Compass (previously known as The Dallas Child Abuse Center) and was a Board Member for SAFF-DFW (South Asian Film Festival Board).
She is a Dallas Women’s Foundation’s prestigious 2014 Maura Helping Women Award recipient and a 2015 Dallas Business Journal Women in Business Award winner. In October of 2016, she was selected Femmes International, Outstanding Brighter Community Blazers. Most recently, Gauthami received the 2017 Immigrant Advocate Award, honoring outstanding immigrant trailblazers. In November 2018, Gauthami was selected as one of top three finalists for “Woman of Year” award through the Greater Dallas Asian American Chamber of Commerce, and in October 2020 Gauthami was awarded the UN Day Global Leadership award for contributing to form strong institutions. Most recently, Gauthami was selected as IANT’s (Indian Association of North Texas) Woman of the Year.
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