The 2006 Sri Lankan Foundation Humanitarian Award was presented to Doris Wiratunga for her lifelong dedication to her community. She has propelled the careers of a significant number of young students and teachers, helped many more by sponsoring their residency and made lasting contributions to the Sri Lankan community through her dedication and generosity of time, energy and resources.
Doris is a London school graduate of the prestigious Le Cordon Bleu School of Culinary Art. She also received her diploma from the Hartley Smith School of cake decorating in London. She was well known in Sri Lanka for her grand cookery demonstrations that were held in in Colombo, Kandy, Gampola, Matale, Galle, and Matara. She worked very closely with the late Mrs. Anita Dickman.
Doris and her late husband Conrad migrated to the United States in 1973 along with their four children Rohan, Nalyn, Kumi, and Kumar. In her early years in the United States, she started one of the first Montessori Schools in the San Fernando Valley. Despite these humble beginnings and the demands placed on establishing a new life, she was always willing to help those around her. The Wiratunga home launched many successful young careers as many students were sponsored, housed and cared for in the Wiratunga household. With Doris, it has always been a case of giving of her time and effort to worthy causes and helping people. That is why she was chosen as the Humanitarian of the Year for 2006. Following are only a sample of her accomplishments and positions held in various community organizations:
-Served three terms as a Vice President of the Sri Lanka America association under Jayam Ratnum, Raja De Silva and Palitha Palpola.
-Served three terms as the Social Secretary of the Sri Lanka America association, once under her late husband, Conrad’s Presidency in 1978.
-First president of the Colts Cricket Club organized by the late Dr. Indran Selvaratnam in 1974. She received the President’s Award in 1994 from Jean Wong for innumerable services to the game of cricket. Was selected to be one of the official scorers for the game between the 1996 World champion Sri Lankan Cricket team vs the Southern California Cricket Association.
-St. Peter’s College, St. Joseph College and Good Shepard Convent association fund raisers.
-Current president of Good Shepard Convent association.
Doris is now semi-retired yet very active in her local church community and enjoys her free time by enjoying her favorite pastime of playing competitive bridge. She continues to contribute her skills and resources in the Sri Lankan community. Doris is happiest with her four children, their spouses, her seven grand children and two great grand children.
Most importantly, Doris wants to acknowledge the love, kindness and dedication of her late husband, Conrad, who was her inspiration, guiding light and love without whom none of this would have been possible.