NET WORTH: Unknown
SOURCE OF WEALTH: Desai Capital Management Incorporated
FUNDING AREAS: Education & Youth, Arts & Culture
OVERVIEW: Rohit Desai, his wife Katharine and family conduct their philanthropy through the Rohit and Katharine Desai Family Foundation, which gave away around $229,000 in a recent year. The foundation primarily funds educational causes as well as arts and cultural institutions.
BACKGROUND: Rohit M. Desai graduated with a B.S. from the University of Bombay in 1958, an M.S. from the University of North Carolina in 1960 and an MBA from Harvard Business School in 1964. He spent two decades with Morgan Guaranty Trust, an affiliate of J.P. Morgan, where he was the head of the Special Investments Group and a member of the Trust and Investment Committees. In 1984, he founded Desai Capital Management Incorporated, a specialized equity investment management firm.
EDUCATION & YOUTH: The Desais have supported Brooklyn Academy of Music, Germantown Academy, Shipley School, Hill Top Preparatory School, North County School, Hotchkiss School, and St. Ann’s School. Private secondary schools in the Northeast seem to be a focus.
ARTS & CULTURE: Desai is a trustee emeritus of Asia Society. Katharine has been on the board of grantees such as Brooklyn Botanical Garden, Brooklyn Museum of Art, and Vero Beach Museum of Art. The couple have also supported Wellesley College Friends of Art.
OTHER: Desai was on the board of the American India Foundation, which is “committed to catalyzing social and economic change in India and building a lasting bridge between the United States and India through high-impact interventions in education, livelihoods, public health, and leadership development.” The family have supported All Souls Church and Sakhi for South Asian Women, which works to end violence against women.
LOOKING FORWARD: The couple are now retired and live in Florida, which may see more significant giving down the line. Given Desai’s global ties, perhaps more money will go towards global issues as well.
The Rohit and Katharine Desai Family Foundation does not provide a clear avenue of contact but below is an address:
Rohit and Katharine Desai Family Foundation
12 East 49th Street, 41st Floor
New York, NY 10017