Tata Trusts has announced the elevation of Siddharth Sharma as the chief executive officer (CEO) and appointed Aparna Uppaluri as the chief operating officer (COO). Their appointments as the CEO and COO will take effect on April 1, 2023. Sharma will succeed N Srinath, who resigned as the Tata Trusts CEO last year after his retirement.

Tata Trusts, which is led by the Tata group patriarch Ratan Tata, in a statement, said Sharma carries with him a two-decade experience in government services, during which he served in several key ministerial positions. A former civil servant, Sharma had also been the financial advisor to the 13th and 14th Presidents of India. During his tenure at the Tata group, he was looking after the sustainability portfolio.

Uppaluri has been working with the Ford Foundation since 2018. She has over 20 years of experience in strategic planning and program development in philanthropy, women’s rights, public health, arts and culture. In her current capacity, she was working as the programme director for India, Nepal and Sri Lanka at the Ford Foundation. Uppaluri will also be the first COO for the Tata Trusts, a position created for the first time.

A statement said Aparna Uppaluri is a well-regarded professional, with exposure in strategic planning and programme development in the fields of philanthropy, women's rights, public health, arts, and culture. "With over 20 years of leadership and management experience, she has led the grant-making initiatives at the Ford Foundation to advance programmatic commitment to strengthen gender justice and has also served as program director to oversee different verticals at the Ford foundation."

The appointment of the two key officials at India's oldest and one of the biggest trusts assumes significance. Over 125-year-old Tata group trusts support causes such as health, nutrition, education, water and sanitation, livelihoods, social justice and inclusion, skilling, migration and urbanisation, environment, digital literacy, sports, arts, craft and culture, and disaster management. Tata Trusts holds a 66% stake in Tata Sons, which is the holding company of the Tata group, which is worth $128 billion.

The total disbursals made by Sir Ratan Tata Trust and Allied Trusts during the year 2020-21 were ₹841.4 crore. Disbursals of ₹790.3 crore were made on all programme grants during the year and small grants touched ₹3.9 crore. The total disbursals to individuals amounted to ₹47.1 crore, the company's annual report shows. Sir Dorabji Tata Trust and Allied Trusts made disbursals worth ₹151.4 crore during the year. Disbursals of ₹133.6 crore were made on all programme grants during the year.

In his annual letter, Ratan N Tata, who's the chairman of the Sir Ratan Tata Trust and Allied Trusts, and the Sir Dorabji Tata Trust and the Allied Trusts, said the year had witnessed the Trusts working with various government bodies and like-minded partner institutions to help alleviate the sufferings brought about by a relentless Covid pandemic in India.

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