NET WORTH: Unknown
SOURCE OF WEALTH: Libra Advisors
FUNDING AREAS: Education, Arts & Cutlure, Indian Causes & Global Development
OVERVIEW: Ranjon Tandon and his wife Chandrika Krishnamurthy Tandon move their philanthropy through the Krishnamurthy Tandon Foundation, which supports education, music and Indian and global causes. The foundation does not accept unsolicited proposals.
BACKGROUND: Ranjan Tandon graduated from the Indian Institute of Technology with a degree in chemical engineering. He also earned a degree from Harvard Business School. In India, Tandon held several manufacturing and operations positions with DCM, a global venture capital firm specializing in technology. He later worked for the European arm of Halliburton, the U.S. multinational oil field operations company. He was CFO of Intermarine and worked for Merrill Lynch before founding Libra Advisors, a hedge fund, in 1990. Chandrika Krishnamurthy Tandon is a graduate of Madras Christian College and the Indian Institute of Management. She is a former partner at McKinsey and Co., an American consulting firm, and founded Tandon Capital Associates in 1992. Chandrika is also a Grammy-nominated composer and singer and runs her own nonprofit music label, Soul Chants Music.
EDUCATION: The Tandons’ education philanthropy has been directed mainly toward higher education in U.S. and India. In 2015, the couple gave $100 million to New York University's Polytechnic School of Engineering, which was renamed the NYU Tandon School of Engineering. Chandrika is a member of the board of trustees at NYU and a member of the board overseers of NYU’s Stern School of Business. She has also led the NYU President’s Global Council. The couple has supported their daughter’s alma mater, Yale University, donating $1.5 million in a recent year. In India, the Tandons have supported Chandrika’s alma maters, Madras Christian College and the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad. Other higher education grantees include the Oxford Center for Hindu Studies and Berklee College of Music. The couple has also supported the teacher development programs Teach for America and Teach for All.
ARTS & CULTURE: The Tandons' grantmaking in the area of arts and culture reflects Chandrika’s involvement in music and the couple’s Indian heritage. One past grantees is the Indo-American Arts Council, which “supports all the artistic disciplines in classical, fusion, folk and innovative forms influenced by the arts of India.” The couple has also supported Jiva Performing Arts, the Smithsonian Institution, and the World Music Institute.
INDIAN CAUSES & GLOBAL DEVELOPMENT: The Tandons have funded Indian causes and global development broadly. They have supported Arsha Vidya Gurukulam, “an institute for the traditional study of Advaita Vedanta, Sanskrit, yoga, Ayurveda, astrology, and other classical Indian disciplines,” and the All India Movement for Seva, which aims to bring education to children living in rural areas of India. One Small House, another grantee, works internationally to support volunteer home building projects for poor families.
LOOKING FORWARD: It is likely that the Tandons will continue to work in their specific areas of interest. According to their foundation’s website, wellness may be an emerging area of interest.