Happy Birthday, Komal!
Komal is the kind of person who, as she moves through life, makes impressions on people. Everyone she’s crossed paths with has a story about how she’s gone out of her way to uplift them. Maybe it was a pep talk she gave at a vulnerable moment or maybe it was just her energy and drive that inspired them to work toward that kind of passion in life — everyone remembers her light.
So, since today is Komal’s birthday and she deserves to hear all the nice things, we decided to assemble a few Dream, Girl team members to tell their own ‘Komal stories’.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, KOMAL. WE LOVE YOU!
“I recently had a reading with a psychic who told me that Komal and I meeting was “divine synchronicity at it’s best”. Komal and I are so different: we have different upbringings, different ways of viewing the world, but our passion and mission in life is so in sync sometimes I forget we aren’t the same person. Komal means so much to me that it’s hard to really to put it in words, she is my business partner, my spirit guide, my emotional insanity, and my best friend. I’m so lucky to have her in my life, and I can’t wait to be working in the same city together in the new year.”
– Erin Bagwell | Dream, Girl director and co-founder
“When I met Komal for the first time, it was in a job interview setting where you should wear a blazer and put your absolute best face forward – clean and polite to (hopefully) ensure smooth entry into your new position. In the interview, Komal asked me where I see myself in five years. This question came after nearly an hour of chatting about feminism and the importance of female storytelling. Without holding back, I served the bubbling excitement I felt for this women, her company, her projects and her mandate and blurted out, “Komal, I honestly just want to know how to be like you and do what you do.” We laughed. But in the 6 months that I’ve worked closely with her, Komal has empowered me to do something amazing: she’s shown me the importance of being ME and empowers me to do what I do. That’s what I love about her – she inhales passion and exhales strength and love to everyone in her orbit. And I feel profoundly honoured to have her in mine. Happy birthday, K!”
– Diana Matthews | DG executive assistant and tour manager
“Like Diana, my first meeting with Komal was a job interview. I was SO nervous. I’m nervous in every job interview, but I had never read a job posting that was so in line with what I wanted to do forever, so naturally I was terrified. Fast forward to a few weeks ago, when I’d gone to Komal for career help/advice, she told me that she “just knew” that first day I met her. I said, “Really? But I was so nervous!” And she told me she could tell, but that she still knew I was right for the job. And I think that’s part of what makes Komal so special: she sees the best in people, and helps them see it for themselves, too. She’s a shameless optimist, and it rubs off on everyone around her.
Another Komal story: a while ago, the Ottawa Citizen ran a profile of Komal, and my great aunt knew I was working with her, so she called to tell my grandma she’d read the article. She told her to pass on this message to me: “Stick with her – she’s going places.” I plan to! Happy birthday, Komal.”
– Kylie Kendall | DG digital content manager
“Komal is a go-getter and firm believer in achieving her dreams. She’s kind, generous, and inclusive in her approach, devoting her life and work to equality and empowerment. Most importantly, Komal is authentic and always uses her voice and light to inspire others. Happy birthday Komal!”
– Prasanna Ranganathan | DG social media expert
“With Komal, I feel like we are able to speak the same language, I feel like I can truly be myself, being constantly stimulated to keep dreaming, keep being ambitious. Komal makes me feel bold and vulnerable at the same time and that’s such an empowering feeling to live!!! It’s no surprise nor news that I admire her deeply and simply, by being who she is, she gives permission to the world to also shine, shine fully and unapologetically. Komal gives us the strength and example to live an authentic and courageous life, to live every day our deepest essence.”
-Eni Selfo | Komal’s coach
“I first met Komal when she visited the set of Dream, Girl just over a year ago. Her energy is super positive and always loving. It’s hard not to be drawn to a kind-hearted soul like hers. No matter where the road takes us, I’m glad she’s one of our two fearless leaders! Wishing her the happiest of all birthdays! (And many more). <3”
–Francesca Kustra | DG Editor & Assistant Camera
“So glad to have someone onboard Dream, Girl who loves the film and the message as much as we do! Thank you for your dedication, enthusiasm, and love. Glad to be on this journey with you! Have a very happy birthday Komal!”
-Mary Perrino | Director of Photography and Colorist
“Komal has an electric spirit and energy that the Dream, Girl team and mission thrives upon. It’s incredible to watch what both her and Erin bring to this mission together. Komal leads with such an empowering attitude and never fails to make you feel relatable. Every time we’ve spoken, regardless of our location, it feels like you’re talking to a longtime friend, someone who is always invested in every moment– someone consistently searching for the best in you. It’s amazing to be on your team. Happiest of birthdays, Komal!”
–Alicia Napierkowski | E-Commerce Expert
“Working with Komal has been such a powerful learning experience. When I spoke to Komal on the phone for the first time about all things Social Media and DG I was absolutely terrified. Komal is one of the women that I strive to be like. I began to instantly look up to her not even 5 minutes into the conversation. After speaking to her I came to that relaization that I do not have to be intimated by successful women. Just having her tell me that I am doing a good job or just telling me that I can do this is such an honor in itself coming from her. Thank you so much for believing in me and all of the women around you. This is your day today, Happy Birthday.”
- Maggie Kerry | Social Media Guru
“From the first day Erin told me about Komal, I knew she was a crazy person. In the absolute best possible way. Here was someone who excitedly called Erin after seeing the Dream, Girl Kickstarter trailer, having never met or spoken to her before. Within 15 minutes, Komal was ready to help out however she could, and the dynamic duo had taken their first step towards world domination. Now that I know Komal well, this isn’t anything out of the ordinary for her. She’s an extraordinarily passionate person who recognizes that spark in others the moment she sees it. Her enthusiasm, attitude, drive, and passion are incredibly electrifying. I feel very lucky to simply exist in the universe of people she knows, because it inspires me every single day. Happy birthday Komal!”
– Sal Mastrocola | Music DG Composer
“Komal is my partner in life, my coach, my inspiration, my mentor, and above all my best friend. We’ve been together for almost 7 years and every single day she inspires me and so many others to be their best selves. I can say with a great amount of joy that meeting her was the best thing that has ever happened to me. She is an absolute light of a human being. Komal breaths life into everything that crosses her path. She is constantly sharing her contagious love for life with others and is a firm believer that anything you can dream of is possible. Everyone who meets her falls in love with her and wants to be around her because she reminds us to audaciously believe in ourselves. Komal reminds us all to look for the light within ourselves that empowers us to do great things both big and small. She constantly tries to help people see the best in themselves. Today we’re celebrating your 26th Birthday and I can’t wait to see what this epic year has in store! Thank you being you every single day. Happy Birthday my love!”
– Mitchel Pennell | D-Girl fanboy and moral support staff for DG Producer.
“When I was at the Sundance film festival last January eating at the bar of Zoom’s restaurant Komal was sitting next to me. I saw on her card “Komal Minhas- producer” which meant her film was in competition, and I said to her, “Hey, how nice, so when is your film screening?” She reacted: “No, we are still in production, but it will be in the festival next year!” I laughed and looked at her badge more closely and saw she had hand-written “producer” on her badge!
I told her that after 33 years of hard work and 67 documentaries produced, I was thrilled that my new film was finally selected at Sundance and out of 10.000 entries was even the opening film. I shared with her that if I had been at Sundance during the production of my first film I would have loved to meet someone that was willing to become my mentor and steer me through the first years of film production to stay out of trouble and not make the same mistakes I made without any guidance.
So I offered her to be her mentor provided she sticks the basic rules of being transparent and honest in partnerships with the many people you have to cooperate with in this strange industry of make belief and BS.
I was very pleased we hit it off immediately and I am thrilled to be able to help in the background and see her becoming one of the best producers in the near future. I did not promise her it will be easy but Gosh what am I proud to see her in front of large film festival audience as member of a seasoned film panel explaining what she does even before she has made her first film. So within 9 months she managed to address the audience of the Mill Valley film festival about her achievement with a festival badge that reads: ‘Komal Minhas-Film Producer’!”
– Bous De Jong | DG Executive Producer