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Smita Shah is a Leader of Leaders

Smita Shah, President, and CEO of SPANN Tech and founder of the Legacy of Mahama Gandhi Luncheon held annually in Chicago, Illinois received the honor of being a guest speaker during this special event. The luncheon was attended by Lori Lightfoot, the Mayor, along with Senator Dick Durbin, World Business leader Andrea Zopp and other dignitaries. 


The event was to honor the man who was a leader in the civil rights movement around the world. This event was held, for the fifth time this year marking the 150th anniversary of his birth. 


Smita Shah said this was a great honor for the Indian-American community in Chicago and her personally. She is the founder of the event which she formed to honor all and exclude none. She believes, through Mahatma Gandhi, that we all have an impact to improve lives by working together.


She is the daughter of immigrants. Her commitment to public service is the driving force in her life. This is evident in the numerous community and civic leadership roles in which she is involved. She believes her calling is due to four major principles: to serve her ethnic community; to show honor to her country; to promote education, particularly for women and girls and in the areas of science and math; and to promote the arts.


Shah, who has been the head of SPAAN Tech, a construction and engineering firm, is a professional engineer and is licensed in several states. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Northwestern University where she was recognized as a “distinguished alumni.” She also attended M.I.T. where she completed her Master of Science in civil and environmental engineering. She completed her thesis on the state of the nation’s infrastructure. Finally, she received a Certificate in Management Studies from Oxford University. There she completed her thesis on the Culture and Leadership of Public-Private Partnerships. With her extensive education in business education and engineering, she founded her business in 1998. Inc. The magazine has recognized her company as one of the 5,000 fastest-growing private companies. Learn more: https://www.thechicagonetwork.org/members/smita-shah/


Crain’s Chicago Business recognized her influential business leaders as the 19th Most Connected Person in Chicago. Shah has won numerous other awards and accolades for her accomplishments and leadership. She was recently appointed to Illinois Governor JB Pritzker’s Restoring Illinois’ Infrastructure Committee. Also, she serves on numerous boards of Directors for many businesses and organizations. 


Through her leadership SPAAN Tech, Inc she has pioneered the growth into a multi-disciplinary firm. She has expanded the infrastructure to include projects such as aviation, transportation, and facilities. Shah presently lives in Chicago. Aside from leading her successful business, she is also one of the most successful female entrepreneurs to succeed in creating startups. She has established her reputation as one of the best female engineers in the US. She is also proud of the fact that she has become one of the most sought after female opinion shapers in the region of Chicago. It seems as though no matter what she touches or where she goes she is one very successful woman!

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