IBJNews

2014 Forty Under 40: Aman Brar

Lou Harry
February 1, 2014
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brar_aman_1col.jpg (IBJ Photo/Aaron P. Bernstein)

Game on: “I was one of those kids who was lucky enough to have the Commodore 64,” Brar said. “I was always enchanted by technology.”

West-case scenario: After graduating from Wabash College—where he played football and studied economics and religion—Brar moved to Silicon Valley. But after a series of jobs, he yearned to return. He applied to graduate schools elsewhere, but couldn’t refute his wife’s logic: “If the goal is to get back to Indiana,” she asked, “how is going to a different state furthering that goal?” Solution: Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. “Outside of my marriage,” Brar said, “being a part of the tech story here in Indiana was the best decision of my life.”

Keeping up with Joneses: While in business school, Brar was asked to TA an entrepreneurship class taught by voicemail/ChaCha guru Scott Jones. Flash forward: After stints with Eli Lilly and Co. and Guidant Corp., Brar was hired by Jones and became vice president of business development for ChaCha. In 2009, he left for IT firm Apparatus, which he has helped grow from 40 to 160 employees and from $7 million to $25 million in revenue. This year involves closing deals on both coasts for the expanding company and business dealings as far away as Singapore.

Mentors: Brar credits his high school football coach with helping shape him. “He taught me to do the right thing when no one’s watching and to slog through with the wind in your face.”

AGE 36
Hometown: Hayward, Calif.

Family: wife, Susan; son, Navraj, 4

Extracurriculars: Brar serves on the boards of the Kelley School Board of Visitors (his “stepping stone back into the Indiana economy”) and the YMCA (“It’s in a unique position to help Indy become a healthier and more productive city”). Traveling and camping are high on the Brar to-do list, whether global (including trips to Africa and India) or local. “Take a 4-year-old to Shades State Park and he thinks he’s at the bottom of the Grand Canyon.”

Attracting talent: Brar is an outspoken opponent of the effort to define marriage in Indiana. “People want to be associated with progressive places. Indiana does a lot of things well. But it’s like being an offensive tackle. You don’t get credit for 99 percent of the blocks but you lose credit when you miss one. Things like the gay marriage debate are like giving up a sack.”•

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  1. Now if he'd just stay there...

  2. Daniel - what about the many US citizens who do NOT follow what the Bible teaches? The Hindus, Jews, Muslims and others who are all American citizens entitled to all rights as Americans?? This issue has NOTHING to do with "What the Bible says..." Keep all Churches separate from State! Pence's ongoing idiocy continues to make Indiana look like a backwards, homophobic state in the eyes of our nation. Can't we move on to bigger issues - like educating our kids?

  3. 1. IBJ should link to the referenced report. We are in the age of electronic media...not sharing information is lazy. Here is a link http://www.in.gov/gov/files/Blue_Ribbon_Panel_Report_July_9_2014.pdf 2. The article should provide more clarity about the make-up of this panel. The commenters are making this item out to be partisan, it does not appear the panel is partisan. Here is a list of the panel which appears to be balanced with different SME to add different perspectives http://www.in.gov/activecalendar/EventList.aspx?view=EventDetails&eventidn=138116?formation_id=189603 3. It suggests a by-pass, I do not see where this report suggests another "loop". 4. Henry, based on your kneejerk reaction, we would be better off if you moved to another state unless your post was meant as sarcasm in which case I say Well Done. 5. The article and report actually indicates need to improve rail and port infrastructure in direct contradiction to Shayla commentary. Specifically, recommendation is to consider passenger rail projects... 6. People have a voice with their elected officials. These are suggestions and do not represent "crony capitalism", etc. The report needs to be analyzed and the legislature can decide on priorities and spending. Don't like it, then vote in a new legislature but quit artificially creating issues where there are none! People need to sift through the politics and provide constructive criticism to the process rather than making uninformed comments in a public forum based on misinformation. IBJ should work harder to correct the record in these forums when blatant errors or misrepresentations are made.

  4. Joe ... Marriage is defined in the Bible ... it is mentioned in the Bible often. Marriage is not mentioned once in the US or Indiana Constitution ...

  5. Daniel - Educate me please: what does the Bible have to do with laws? If the government wasn't in the business of marriage to begin with, then it wouldn't have to "define" marriage at all. Marriage could be left as a personal, religious, or otherwise unregulated action, with no ties to taxes, legal status, etc. Then people could marry whomever they want, and all this silliness would go away. Remember to vote Libertarian in November.

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