This story originally appeared in the fall 2013 Harker Quarterly.
by Ellen DiBiase
The Madala Family
Embodying the entrepreneurial and philanthropic spirit of the Bay Area, Srini and Durga Madala (Samantha, grade 11; Ajay, grade 5), are well known in the Harker community for their contributions to the advancement of the school.
Harker parents since 2003, they sponsored the construction of the Madala Biology Center in Nichols Hall on the Saratoga campus during Phase III of the Cornerstones of Success campaign. The biology center features state-of-the-art equipment that allows Harker students to conduct research at or beyond the college level and is one of five science centers within Nichols that enables better collaboration for both students and teachers.
The Madalas’ charitable giving to Harker didn’t stop with a major capital gift, however; they have also made generous contributions to the endowment fund, and in the 2007-08 school year, they pledged to make a 2:1 gift match for an increase in any family’s annual gift and a 5:1 gift match for donors who had not made a gift in the previous year, up to $1 million total. All in all, those matches were honored for the annual gifts of more than 550 Harker families in the 2007-08 school year.
Srini Madala is chairman and founder of the Softsol Group in Fremont, which is an IT services provider that empowers the customer to achieve efficiency, innovation, compliance and cost savings. He has also served on the board of directors for KQED San Francisco. Durga Madala works as a cardiologist at Good Samaritan Hospital in San Jose and received her medical training through the University of California, San Francisco and California Pacific Medical Center.
Together, the Madalas’ latest venture has been the construction of a 42,000-square-foot community development center in Srini’s hometown of Nizamabad, India, where families can come together to share in educational, athletic, entrepreneurial and health-based activities. In memory of Srini’s grandparents, this extensive project was funded by the Madala Family Charitable Trust.
With their expertise in philanthropy and community development, the Madalas were key members of Harker’s capital campaign committee in its previous phase. The Madalas have generously opened their home to several head of school gatherings and hosted a head of school celebration dinner. Srini has served on the parent technology committee at Harker and in recent years has also worked directly with Harker students as both a career panelist and mentor. Ajay and Samantha have both been active participants in the Harker performing arts program, and Samantha has also played lacrosse for the upper school.
The Singh Family
For Jagdeep and Roshni Singh (Noor, grade 9; Kismet, grade 6; Nageena, grade 4), choosing to make a visionary gift to support the construction of a new pool on the Saratoga campus felt like a natural fit.
“All three of my daughters swim,” Roshni Singh said. “My mother was a national athlete in India as well as a Ph.D. in psychology. As a family, we have seen the benefit of both academics and athletics.”
A practicing physician at Kaiser Permanente in Santa Clara, she is board-certified in internal medicine and hospice and palliative care. Her husband, Jagdeep, is the cofounder and CEO of Quantum-Scape, an energy storage corporation, and holds degrees from the University of Maryland, Stanford, and the University of California, Berkeley. Previous, he co-founded and served as president and CEO of Infinera. He has been an advisory council member for the Stanford Graduate School of Business and is also an advisory board member of RWI Ventures.
Since the installation of the Singh Aquatic Center in 2007, all previous pool records at Harker have been broken. The 25-yard pool features eight lanes and supports the competitive swim team and the water polo team. It is also home to the popular duct tape regatta, an annual spirit event in which classes compete against each other in a relay race using boats made only of duct tape and cardboard. The pool is further made available to the greater community for independent sports leagues and swimming lessons.
In addition to the Singhs’ capital campaign gift in Phase III, they have also offered volunteer and sponsorship support to special events at Harker, including the Family & Alumni Picnic and the 2013 Harker Fashion Show. Roshni has served as a homeroom volunteer and is currently a parent ambassador welcoming new families entering grade 4.
Teré Aceves, director of preschool and lower school volunteer programs, commented that, “Jagdeep and Roshni can often be found at the Harker community socials, poised to help in any way they can.”
The Singh family is an exemplary model of how even the busiest of parents can find time to offer their support to the school in a variety of ways. “We hope that Harker will continue to excel in all avenues,” Roshni said.