Anya Chinnaiyan​

Anya Chinnaiyan

Board Member, Detroit2Nepal Foundation

Anya Chinnaiyan is a current undergraduate student dedicated to women’s public health and equity; she will graduate from the University of Michigan in 2024 with a Bachelor of Science with Honors in Neuroscience and Spanish. For many years, she has demonstrated a passion for equitable practice for individuals with less privileged backgrounds, those with different abilities, and those affected by illness. As a member of the leadership board of Dance Marathon at the University of Michigan, a student-run nonprofit that raises funds and awareness for pediatric therapies at C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital as well as a published co-author of renal cancer research through the Michigan Center of Translational Pathology, Anya has consistently demonstrated her dedication to equity in science and society.

Importantly, Anya is a student board member of Detroit2Nepal (D2N), a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing sustainable support to communities in rural Nepal and neighborhoods in Detroit. Within D2N, Anya has initiated a project focused on dismantling the cultural stigma surrounding menstruation in rural Nepalese villages. In these communities, school-going girls often feel ashamed of their biology and face unequal opportunities compared to their male peers. Anya actively engages with staff members located halfway across the world, conducts surveys in Nepalese municipalities, and continues to develop a framework for feminine health education. Her efforts have resulted in the establishment of a support system and a safe space for young women to gain a better understanding of their menstrual health. She firmly believes in normalizing conversations around menstruation, aiming to diminish the taboo that exists in many rural areas. After graduation from college, Anya aspires to spend time in Khotang, Nepal, to witness firsthand the impact her project and D2N have had on the lives of young Nepalese women.



The inaugural 40 under 40 cohort represents the next generation of leaders, entrepreneurs, researchers, scientists, activists, intellectual provocateurs, authors, and directors who inspire and catalyze us all to a more just and equitable world.