Mission

When you don't have to worry about your health and are provided with the right tools, you can dream beyond your circumstances. We empower women and children through health and livelihood to do just that.

Our Story

The Desai Foundation has multiple goals both in India and the United States of America (US); it seeks to improve social and economic life in the villages of India, and to develop and implement educational programs to promote Indian culture and heritage in the United States. The overall mission of the Foundation is to help the community in which we live, as well as the one we came from, by promoting better health and education. The Foundation envisions a society where everyone leverages their experiences and resources to reach out to others in greater need.

 

The Desai Foundation, originally Desai Family Foundation, was established in 1997 after a family vacation to Lima, Peru. Though seemingly sitting far above civilization atop Macchu Picchu, our family was not ever far removed from it as we knew how fortunate we were and had a deep desire to give back to society and share our experiences, resources, and talents to improve the quality of life for others. During a discussion of how best to act on the family’s desire to give back to society- the one we live in (US) as well as the one we came from (rural India), the Desai Foundation was born.

 

Our sphere of influence has included health, education, Indian art & culture, technology and community support. Over the past 15 years, The Desai Foundation has undertaken many private initiatives for public welfare, focusing on improving the quality of life. Our past initiatives have included donations and support to Indian art and culture, education and health for women and children, and general community support in India and the USA.

 

"We believe in enriching the communities that have enriched our lives and giving back to those in need."

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Annual Report













View our 2016 Annual Report here

 

Team

 
Samir Desai

Samir Desai - Chairman of the Board




 
  • Samir Desai is an award-wining entrepreneur, visionary, industry leader and philanthropist. Mr. Desai currently is the CEO of Aditi, Inc. and advises corporations on how to succeed and grow. He actively invests in new ventures and devotes most of his time to entrepreneurship and community service.

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    Mr. Desai was the founder, CEO and President of System Resources Corporation, as a one-stop system company serving private and public sectors. The company provided information and communications technologies to various industries that included transportation, logistics, defense and manufacturing.

    Mr. Desai and SRC were the recipients of many awards and commendations that include Small Business Administration’s Prime Contractor of the Year Award (Region 1), and the Entrepreneurial Success Award for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and New England region. Additionally, 1999 marked the sixth year he was named as a New England finalist for the prestigious Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award. SRC was on Inc. Magazine’s fastest growing companies list for two years. Prior to his founding SRC, Mr. Desai held Management and Technology leadership positions with start-up technology companies such as Input Output Computer Services (IOCS), and Computer Identics and larger corporations including Zayer Corporations, Illinois Central Gulf Railroad and Rockwell Manufacturing Co. Mr. Desai is the Co-founder of DB Healthcare, Inc., a successful and growing enterprise in healthcare services for staffing, information technology and consulting.

    Outside of business, Mr. Desai is equally committed to endeavors, which contribute to the community’s future and economic expansion through participating with educational, community, technological and trade organizations. He accompanied Senator Kerry on his trade mission to India, and President Clinton during his visit to the earthquake-struck state of Gujarat in India. Mr. Desai was a sustaining member of the Military Affairs Council, and a member of the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association and the Air Traffic Control Association.

    In addition, Mr. Desai participates in many community, political and educational organizations. He is a board member of the Middlesex Community College Foundation, Trustee of Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, MA and was a founding member, past President, Chairman and Board Member of TiE (The Indus Entrepreneurs) – Boston, a rapidly growing organization that encourages entrepreneurship. Mr. Desai received his M.S. in Industrial Engineering from Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago and his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Maharaja Sayaji Rao University, Baroda, India.





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Megha Desai

Megha Desai - President




 
  • Megha Desai has been the Director of the Desai Foundation since 2006, where she has helped reshape the focus, programming, and overall brand of the Foundation. She is also the founder and principal of Marketing. Strategy. Dharma. (MSD), a brand development and branded entertainment firm based in New York City.

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    Megha has worked at some of the most prestigious advertising and communications agencies in the world including Wieden+Kennedy NY, OgilvyEntertainment, Anomaly, and BBH NY, shaping brands such as Unilever's Axe Bodyspray, ING DIRECT, Coca-Cola products, and HP. Megha has expertise in many areas of communications including advertising, integrated marketing, branded entertainment, original content and marketing strategy. She is passionate about storytelling and helping brands, artists and small business find their voice.

    Along side her professional career, Megha has been devoted to public service, as exemplified by her many projects throughout the years. Megha continues her work with Columbia Community Impact, an umbrella organization at Columbia University, which develops and executes community development programs in the Morningside Heights area in New York City. Megha has, and continues to serve, as an advisor for many non-profits, start-ups and political campaigns.

    Megha holds a B.A. in Economics from Barnard College of Columbia University in the City of New York. She is an avid skier, singer, and NE Patriots fan.





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Divyesh Trivedi

Divyesh Trivedi - Executive Director- India




 
Thulasi Sivalingam

Thulasi Sivalingam - Marketing




 
Betsy Diacatos

Betsy Diacatos - Operations

Cynthia Wachs

Cynthia Wachs - Special Consultant




 
Meenakshi Verma-Agrawal

Meenakshi Verma-Agrawal - Special Advisor




 
Anu Ashok

Anu Ashok - Health Advisor




 
Santhana Krishnan

Santhana Krishnan - Board of Directors




 
  • Santhana is a former entrepreneur CEO, angel investor and business executive with over 20 years of IT industry experience. Santhana is passionate about supporting entrepreneurs who are focused on innovation and business models to create new markets. He is also a strong supporter of social initiatives in India through organizations such as Akshaya Patra, America India Foundation and Desai Foundation.

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    Santhana is currently responsible for global business development of a $300M+ portfolio at CA Technologies. Prior to this role, Santhana was the Chairman, CEO and Founder of InteQ. He led InteQ from its inception to its position as an industry leader and pioneer in remote infrastructure management services (acquired by CSS Corp.) and SaaS IT service management solution (acquired by CA Technologies). Santhana holds two Master's degrees: in Information Systems from Bentley University and in Industrial Engineering from Kansas State University. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Kerala in India. In addition, Santhana has served on the boards of the Massachusetts Network Communications Council and TiE-Boston where he is committed to encouraging other entrepreneurs and advising startup companies. In 2001, Santhana was selected by the Boston Business Journal as one of the area's top "40 under 40" technology executives. Santhana lives with his wife Namita and two daughters in the suburbs of Boston.





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Yash Shah

Yash Shah - Board of Directors




 
  • Yash is an entrepreneur, angel investor and business executive with over 25 years of IT industry experience. He is a Charter member of TiE-Boston and is currently SVP for Product Management at CA Technologies.

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    Prior to the sale of his company, InteQ Corporation, to CA Technologies, he was President, CTO, and Co-Founder of InteQ. He received his Bachelor's of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Clarkson University. Yash is an active supporter of several social organizations in the Boston area.





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Nilima Desai

Nilima Desai - Board of Directors




 
Moha Desai

Moha Desai - Board of Directors




 
 

Partners

The Desai Foundation leverages its resources by building partnerships with organizations with specific geographical and subject matter expertise and resources. Our current partners include:

 

PEM

Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, MA
The Peabody Essex Museum celebrates artistic and cultural creativity through collections and interpretations of art. The Museum uses exhibitions, programs, publications, media and more to broaden knowledge and awaken the senses, allowing people to enrich their lives by introducing them to a new perspective of the world in which they live.

 

The Peabody Essex Museum is one of the nation’s prominent museums for Asian art including Japanese, Chinese, Korean and Indian art. In conjunction with the Peabody Essex Museum, the Desai Foundation works to establish programs that celebrate the rich heritage of India’s art, culture, and history. These programs may comprise of any combination of activities: performance, exhibitions, lectures, and/or symposiums.

 

Middlesex Community College Foundation, Lowell, MAMiddlesex Community College Foundation, Lowell, MA

The MCC Foundation was established to increase fundraising efforts from private Foundations, individuals, corporations and small businesses. The MCC Foundation generates income from Celebrity Forum, the Annual Fund and revenue to develop programs in support of students and faculty, and to further education and training. The Desai Foundation has been involved with the Foundation since its beginning, in support of various goals.

 

Untdi Vibhag Kelavni Mandal, Untdi, Gujarat, India

Untdi Vibhag Kelavni Mandal, Untdi, Gujarat, India

The Untdi Vibhag Kelavni Mandal Trust started the middle school in the surrounding area in 1919 with 32 students. The school building that currently exists was built in 1958 with the help of students, teachers and many village people and was renamed “Lok Vidyalaya Untadi.” The school produced many great students, who have launched successful careers. The school has continued to remain the hub of education for not only Untdi, but many of the surrounding villages including, Malvan, Dharasana, Umarsadi, Jespore, Dungri and others. The school building serves a population of roughly 40,000 which includes a mix of communities of Anvails, Brahmins, scheduled tribal communities and Muslims.

 

For over five decades, the school building and infrastructure deteriorated due to use, negligence, lack of resources and weather conditions. The deterioration of the building was negatively impacting the educational needs of hundreds of students and created an urgent need for the construction of a new modern high school.

 

The Untdi Vibhag Kelavni Mandal Trust in collaboration with the Desai Foundation, headquartered in the United States, created a vision and Foundation for a formal and informal education center for the community. Shantaben Vidhyabhavan, thus, became a reality and a community center for kindergarten through high school education and a community development center that caters to all the needs of the community to improve life in the region.

 

Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar, Gujarat, IndiaIndian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India

IT Gandhinagar, an institution of higher learning in science, technology and related fields, aspires to develop top notch scientists, engineers, leaders and entrepreneurs to meet the needs of the society-now and in the future. Furthermore, IIT Gandhinagar seeks to undertake ground breaking research and develop breakthrough products that will improve everyday lives of our communities.

 

Mama Hope, IndiaMama Hope, India

Mama Hope is a nonprofit that trains impact entrepreneurs from around the world and partners them with visionary leaders in developing countries to lift their communities out of poverty. Together, they fund and build community-identified sustainable projects using local resources. Mama Hope is creating future leaders and revolutionizing the way sustainable projects are funded.

 

Community Impact at Columbia University, New York, NYCommunity Impact at Columbia University, New York, NY

Community Impact was established in 1981and has grown into Columbia University’s largest student service organization. Community Impact serves disadvantaged people in the Morningside Heights, Washington Heights and Harlem neighborhoods providing quality programs and items to those in need, ranging from food and shelter to job training and companionship. There are roughly twenty-five service programs supported by roughly 950 student volunteers that are able to serve more than 8,000 people each year through their hard work and dedication. Community Impact is well connected in the communities its programs serve and partners with more than 100 organizations in the area such as schools, social service offices and others. The Desai Foundation has been collaborating on various activities since 1993.

 

Shri Yoganand Saraswati Education and Medical Relief TrustShri Yoganand Saraswati Education and Medical Relief Trust, Talangpur, Gujarat, India

Shri Yoganand Saraswati Education and Medical Relief Trust (the Trust) is a non-profit organization committed to improving and extending educational and medical services to over 10,000 people living in Talangpur, Gujarat, India and surrounding areas. Since its formation in 1996, it has had a substantial salutary impact on the community. Among its accomplishments, the Trust has organized health camps, provided monetary assistance for those requiring hospitalization and contributed to educational services for the needy in the community. The Trust has also provided funding for surgery, clinical services, medication, tuition, books, school uniforms and more.

 

Encouraged by its past successes, in 2006, the Trust, in partnership with the Desai Foundation, established Hansa Community Development Center to extend its services to improve social and economic sustainability for the community through education, training, and knowledge enrichment. These services include programs and events that result in the improvement of life development skills, health and hygiene habits, general career development, quality and extent of schooling and several areas of civic services.

 

Gram Seva, Gujarat, IndiaGram Seva, Gujarat, India

GRAM SEVA TRUST (GST) is a non-profit organization in South Gujarat, India dedicated to health care and rural development, formed by young doctors and professionals who have rural roots. They share the strong belief that charities directed towards development of rural society positively stimulate the country's progress and growth.

 

 

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© 2012 The Desai Foundation | 200 Wheeler Road, Fl 4, Burlington, MA 01803 | (781) 270-3655 | info@thedesaiFoundation.org | Tax ID #: 04-3433749