South Asia Pure Water Initiative, Inc. was started by a husband and wife team with Peace Corps and Rotary backgrounds who want to make a difference in the lives of people living in South Asia.


  • Provide clean point-of-use drinking water;
  • Educate children about better hygiene;
  • Sustain community-based employment for project staff.

    Meet our Team

    Cathy J. Forsberg


    Cathy Forsberg is a graduate of the University of Vermont and has been a Certified Public Accountant since 1981. Cathy is the owner Forsberg Consulting, pc, Accounting Professionals located in Wallingford, Connecticut. Her specialty is accounting and tax work for Non-Profit organizations.

    Cathy has been a member of the Rotary Club of Hamden, Connecticut since 1993 and served as President of that organization in 2004-2005. She is a recipient of the prestigious Rotary International “Service Above Self” award which honors annually no more than 150 of the 1.2 million Rotarians worldwide for outstanding community service.

    In 2004 Cathy and her husband, Mike Lipman founded South Asia Pure Water Initiative, Inc. and she has served as treasurer and secretary of the organization since its inception.

    Michael B. Lipman


    Michael, now retired, is a graduate of the school of business of the University of Wisconsin, Madison. He was the founder and managing partner of Lipman & Company, pc, Certified Public Accountants in Hamden, Connecticut.

    Michael was an American Peace Corps Volunteer in South India from 1969 to 1971. He worked in cooperation with Mysore State Agro Industries, an Indian Government Corporation, to develop agricultural and drinking water resources.

    He is married to Cathy Forsberg, Certified Public Accountant and past President of the Rotary club of Hamden, Connecticut and a Rotary International “Service Above Self” award recipient.

    Together they founded South Asia Pure Water Initiative, Inc. in 2005, a non-profit organization supporting the manufacture and distribution of Bio-sand water filters in India. Michael was trained in Calgary, Canada by the Centre for Affordable Water and Sanitation Technology (CAWST) in low cost clean water and sanitation alternatives for developing nations.

    Cathy and Michael work with numerous Rotary Clubs as well as other not-for-profit organizations in India to develop programs to distribute these low cost, efficient filters to the neediest people of that country. They have developed “Partnership” programs with organizations and individuals in the United States and Canada to bring clean water to more than 60 villages and thousands of schools in India.

    Shivani Kumar

    India Country Representative

    Shivani Kumar earned her Doctorate in Psychology in 2001 and her MBA in 1998. She has been working at UCLA since 2001 treating individuals and couples in therapy. Prior to her career as a therapist she held various positions in business with an emphasis on sales, marketing and distribution. Her extensive travel to over 50 countries has given her a unique perspective of various cultures and traditions and the problems facing developing countries. Being a community-oriented person, she always strives to find ways to make the world a better place for all. In her spare time, she enjoys reading spiritual books, learning anything new and spending time with her family and friends.

    She joined SAPWII in the summer of 2013 as the India Country Representative. Her role includes coordinating training programs in India, following up with Non-Government Organizations throughout India, fundraising and managing SAPWII’s volunteer interns in the U.S. Her vision is to see every village in India having clean water using the BioSand Water Filter. She strongly believes that not only is water a necessity for life, but that water is a right, not a privilege.

    One of her favorites quotes: "Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared." ~ Buddha

    Debra McDaniel

    Board of Trustee

    Debra “Deb” McDaniel joined the SAPWII Board of Trustees in 2009. Deb brings more than twenty-five years professional experience in the private and non-profit sectors and has a proven ability to create, administer and evaluate fiscal, operational and human resource systems in a team-based atmosphere.

    Debra visited SAPWII project sites in South India in 2009 and 2011 and served as an international volunteer in Mongolia in 2011-12. She holds a Bachelors of Science degree from Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut. Born and raised in Kansas City, Deb currently resides in Glastonbury, Connecticut.

    Ramachandre Gowda TS

    Managing Director (Kolar)

    Rotarian Ramachandre Gowda TS (Ram) is a ‘Mechanical Engineering’ graduate from National Institute of Engineering, Mysore University, Mysore India. He has more than three decades of entrepreneurial experience in mechanical fabrication for heavy earth-moving equipment as proprietor of Veda Industries and Prerana Industries in Kolar, India. 

    Ram has been working with South Asia Pure Water Initiative, Inc. (SAPWII) since November, 2005 and is the Managing Director of the Kolar filter manufacturing operations. Because of his extensive knowledge of BioSand filter production and distribution, he is widely sought after as a technical advisor to other Non-Profit groups in India who are seeking help for implementing BioSand water filter projects in their respective areas.

    Ram is a community service veteran as he has served local communities in India as a Rotarian for past 31 years. His knowledge and dedication has been invaluable to SAPWII, initiating grant processes to receive Rotary funding in early stages of our clean water projects in India.

    Lynda Hammond

    Board of Director

    Lynda Hammond is the President and CEO of ATS Laboratories located in Bridgeport, CT. The company designs and manufactures test devices used in the area of diagnostic ultrasound and enjoys doing business in the global marketplace.

    Lynda became a Rotarian in 2001 and is a member of the Rotary Club of Orange, Connecticut, District 7980. She has served as Club President, International Club Chair, District International Service Chair, World Community Service Chair and President of Rotary District 7980 Gift of Life Foundation. Rotary Advisor of the St. Martin’s de Porres Academy Interact Club - first middle school club in the District. Member of the Rotary Disaster Action Group.

    Lynda is the recipient of many community service awards including the prestigious Rotary International’s “Service Above Self” award, an honor bestowed on less the 150 Rotarians of the 1.2 million worldwide Rotarians each year.

    She is most proud of being a member of the Board of Directors of the South Asia Pure Water Initiative, Inc.

    Dan Gooder Richard

    Board Member

    was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Kolar District, Karnataka (Mysore), India, 1969-1970 along with Mike Lipman, SAPWII co-founder and president. Dan is a publisher (www.GooderGroup.com) and author of several books on real estate and marketing. He is a skilled writer and was the major contributor of the text for the first SAPWII website in 2007.

    Synnove B. Granholm

    Board Member

    also an original SAPWII Director, was born in Narpes, Finland. She has been Chief Financial Officer of Gooder Group since 1983. Her expert photography is featured in the first SAPWII website.

    Dan and Synnove’s love of India was enriched by knowing SAPWII’s spiritual forefather and supporter, Haroon Sulaiman Sait (1935-2009) of Bangalore. Haroon’s legendary Regent Guesthouse and The Only Place restaurant, both located in Bangalore, had an international reputation for excellence and hospitality.

    Michel Duchesne

    Board of Director

    Michel Duchesne, through an extended career with two major Multinational Companies (Chevron & Uniroyal), has acquired an in-depth international expertise in Europe, the USA and Latin America.

    After completing Post Graduate studies in Madison, Wisconsin, Michel was hired by Chevron Chemical with postings in Europe, Latin America, the USA (2 years at the San Francisco headquarters) and as a US Regional Manager.

    After 16 years with Chevron, Michel was recruited by Uniroyal Chemical as Director of Sales World Wide and was very much involved in growing sales in Eastern Europe and the People’s Republic of China in particular. This experience led to appointments as Vice President, Europe based in London followed by Vice President, Latin America based between Mexico City and Sao Paulo.

    Michel is a dual citizen of France and the USA. He is fluent in French, English and Spanish and through his postings in Europe, Latin America and the USA has acquired a global attitude and cultural sensitivity.