South Asian Bar
Association of Chicago


Serving Chicagoland's South Asian Community

Foundation Board

Board of Directors for for the term of
Feb 1, 2019 to Jan 31, 2021:

Jyoti Raval, President
Shama Patari, Treasurer
Lynn Preshad, Secretary

Karen K. Barnes, Board Member
Tanvi Patel, Board Member
Tara Raghavan, Board Member
Anshuman Vaidya, Board Member

Debjani Desai, Ex-Officio

Jyoti Raval, President

Jyoti-bwJyoti Raval has shown a commitment to helping people with disabilities for several years. After completing a degree in Applied Science with concentration in Biological Science and Kinesiology, Ms. Raval went on to graduate from Quinnipiac University School of Law with cum laude distinction. Additionally, she also received a Certificate of Health Law with Honors. She was awarded the James R. DeFonce Scholarship for Outstanding Advocacy of Persons with Disabilities and the Margaret E. Ryder Memorial Award for Excellence in Health Law during her second year of law school for her work in the health law clinic. Upon graduation, she received the American Bar Association and Bureau of National Affairs award for Excellence in the Study of Health Law. After working as a research assistant and certified legal intern for the QUSL Health Law Clinic, she authored a manual to help future students navigate through Social Security Disability claims. Since joining the firm, Ms. Raval has been providing initial consultations, advocating at the administrative hearings, and representing clients at the Appeals Council and United States District Court levels.

Shama Patari, Treasurer

Shama Patari is a partner at Barnes/Richardson’s Chicago office where she advises foreign and domestic companies on all aspects of international trade regulation, planning and compliance, including customs, export controls, economic sanctions, embargoes, international trade agreements and preference programs. Shama represents clients across various industries, including automotive, agricultural commodities, plastics, textile and apparel, electrical goods, chemicals, and other consumer products.

Shama's practice in customs law includes issues of tariff classification, valuation, country of origin marking, preferential duty programs, customs audits and verifications, seizures, penalties and prior disclosures. Her practice in export issues focuses on compliance and enforcement of the U.S. export control regulations and economic sanctions regimes. Shama has assisted clients in completing the relevant documentation related to the export or transfer of their products, software, technology and services.

Shama has represented both foreign and domestic clients before U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Bureau of Industry and Security, Canada Border Services Agency, as well as the Court of International Trade and the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

Shama is actively involved with the the Customs Law Committee of the American Bar Association’s Section of International Law and of the Customs and International Trade Bar Association.

Lynn Preshad, Secretary

Lynn-bwLynn Preshad practices mortgage foreclosure defense and immigration law at Dreyfus Law Group. She earned her Juris Doctor degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School in May 2009 and was admitted to the Illinois State Bar in November 2009. While attending law school, Ms. Preshad concentrated in litigation, immigration law, criminal law, and constitutional law, and dedicated her extracurricular time to externing at the Cook County Public Defender’s Office, the ABA mentor-mentee program, Mock Trial Board, Amnesty International, American Civil Liberties Union, and participating in Client Counseling, Moot Court, and Mock Trial competitions. During and after law school, she volunteered for, CARPLS, CVLS, and SABA Chicago’s “Cyriac Kappil” Indo‐American Center Pro bono Clinic, where she continues to volunteer. In 2014, Ms. Preshad received an award from CVLS in recognition of her commitment to pro bono and her efforts to further Chicago Volunteer Legal Services’ mission to provide equal access to justice. Ms. Preshad is currently a member of the ISBA, the CBA, AILA, and SABA Chicago. She is fluent in Hindi/Urdu and understands some Punjabi, Gujarati, and Spanish.


Karen K. Barnes

Karen K. Barnes is a Director and Senior Counsel at Discover Financial Services. She focuses her practice on credit risk and credit reporting issues under the TILA and the FCRA across all consumer banking products, including credit card, home lending, home equity, personal loans, and student loans. Prior to this role, Karen was legal counsel for fair lending matters across Discover, after serving in a compliance and legal role with respect to fair lending. Before joining Discover, Karen also worked as an associate at Barack Ferrazzano, a compliance analyst for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, and an examiner for the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.

Tanvi Patel

Tanvi Patel is an intellectual property attorney at Neal Gerber & Eisenberg in Chicago, IL, where she assists clients in protecting their innovations through all aspects of development and commercialization. Tanvi’s practice includes understanding clients’ and competitive intellectual property, procuring and developing clients’ intellectual property portfolios, and enforcing and/or defending against allegations of infringement.

Tanvi obtained her B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois Urbana – Champaign (2005), and her J.D. from DePaul University (2011).  Tanvi first became involved with SABA Chicago Foundation in 2018 as a Board Member.   

Tara Raghavan

Tara M. Raghavan is a partner at Rakoczy Molino Mazzochi Siwik LLP. Her practice focuses on complex patent litigation, counseling, and opinion work, particularly relating to the Hatch-Waxman Amendments to the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act. In October 2013, Ms. Raghavan was named a Top Woman Attorney – Outstanding Young Attorneys in Illinois, for Intellectual Property Law by Chicago Magazine. She has also been named an Illinois Rising Star for 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 by Super Lawyers. Tara has served on the Board of the South Asian Bar Association of Chicago (formerly Indian American Bar Association of Chicago) in numerous capacities including as President in 2008 and is currently a member of the Advisory Council. Tara is also currently on the Board of Chicago Tyagaraja Utsavam, an organization devoted to propagating Indian classical music, dance and other arts.

Anshuman Vaidya

Anshuman is a Deputy Supervisor with the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in the Special Prosecutions Bureau. Anshuman supervises Assistant State’s Attorneys and criminal investigators assigned to public corruption, financial crimes, money laundering, and election fraud cases.  He also handles grand jury investigations, oral arguments, evidentiary hearings, jury trials, sentencing hearings, and appellate litigation.

Prior to joining the State’s Attorney’s Office, Anshuman worked as a litigator and prosecutor with the Illinois Attorney General’s Office where he represented the People of Illinois in state and federal trial courts.  As an Assistant Attorney General, he supervised the felony tax fraud prosecution unit and served as counsel to the Illinois Department of Revenue.  He also handled cases involving multi-million dollar bank fraud schemes, corporate embezzlement, organized crime, first degree murder, sexual assault, and economic crimes perpetrated against the government.  In addition, Anshuman litigated complex civil actions on behalf of Illinois consumers to enjoin unfair and deceptive business practices and obtain restitution and disgorgement of illegal profits.

Anshuman is an Adjunct Professor at Loyola University Chicago School of Law in the Legal Writing Department.  Anshuman previously served as a board member and honorary board member for the Asian American Bar Association of Greater Chicago.  He earned his bachelor of science from Northwestern University and his J.D. from the University of Wisconsin Law School.

Debjani Dasgupta, Ex-Officio

Debjani Dasgupta serves as Assistant General Counsel for Litigation and Eligibility for the Illinois Department of Healthcare and Family Services. Prior to that, she was an Administrative Law Judge for the same agency, handling medical vendor appeals and fair hearings. Debjani also served as an Assistant State's Attorney for the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office in the Special Prosecutions Bureau’s Financial Crimes and Public Corruption Unit, Juvenile Justice Bureau, and Civil Actions Bureau. Debjani earned her J.D. from The John Marshall Law School and her B.B.A. in Finance from Loyola University of New Orleans.