After decades working with community organizations and nonprofits in various capacities, we started Vega Mala Consulting to help support our communities and the social justice work we so deeply care about. A women- and minority-owned business, we are based in the DC metro area and work with clients throughout the United States.
We are partners both in this business and in life, something that brings us joy daily. We met in 1996 and were married in 2002. In 2003, we went on our first two-person strategic planning retreat. Having recognized how deeply intertwined and interdependent our personal, community, and professional lives were, we sought to align our values and mission with our daily lives. Our strategic planning retreats are now an annual affair. It is through this process that we bring complementary strengths, skills, and vision of interdependence to everything we do.
As a Professional Certified Coach (PCC), I specialize in leadership development, career transition, and intentional life planning. I work primarily with highly motivated, creative, thoughtful social change activists and nonprofit staff.
I am a middle-class, caste-privileged South Asian/Tamilian American, shaped by my immigrant upbringing in the 1970s in the small town of West Bend, Wisconsin. I was an outsider everywhere: at school, at home, when visiting relatives in India. Observing others from the outside in, along with my limitless appetite for psychology/“self-help” literature, molded my desire to create affirming, welcoming, judgment-free spaces that galvanizes me to this day.
My nonprofit and philanthropic work focuses on LGBTQ equality, racial and gender justice, and education equity. I’ve been involved in LGBTQ organizing since 1983, and active in the South Asian queer community since 1997. In 2004, my wife Mala and I were one of the plaintiff couples in Washington State’s marriage equality lawsuit.
I have more than 35 years of experience in nonprofit and community organizations as a staff member, board member, executive director, volunteer, and community member. I’ve facilitated leadership workshops, given conference keynote addresses, and presented leadership trainings for college students as well as for local and national organizations. One of my favorite activities is facilitating daylong Intentional Life Planning workshops with Mala.
I also am a social scientist and academic, with 13 years of experience teaching sociology and advising low-income college students and students of color. In that time, I led student service programs at universities and foundations designed to increase access to higher education for low-income and underrepresented students. I also created and shaped social change projects and programs in a variety of issue areas since the 1980s.
The common thread that runs through all of these experiences is my love of working with smart, caring people who find themselves ready to explore new pathways, build their leadership strengths and gifts, and/or develop practices to align their lives with their values. I offer a judgment-free, empowering space to nurture your internal exploration and clear a path to your goals. Because of my decades-long obsession with understanding human behavior, I’ve also accumulated an arsenal of resources, exercises, and tools to support you on your journey.
I’d love to have a conversation with you to see how I can support you!
Learn more at LinkedIn Vega Subramaniam.
Mala Nagarajan, Cofounder and Principal
As a young adult, I became more actively involved in volunteering with social justice organizations, serving and advocating for women, people with disabilities, and queer people of color. What most influenced my perspective was growing up in an immigrant family, having a mother who spoke very little English and became deaf when I was seven, and having a father who was a public servant all his life. What inspires me the most is making a positive difference in real people’s lives and driving social change and transformation – in me, in you, in the people we work with, and the communities we serve.
I’m a nonprofit strategist and social entrepreneur with more than 20 years of management, technology, and organizational development (OD) experience spanning the public, nonprofit, and for-profit sectors. I am driven by a vision of strong organizations working collaboratively toward a common social purpose. I’m an organizational development geek at heart, and I see my work as learning with you and providing you adaptive capacity and an external perspective.
Whether you are a community-based organization, a national coalition, or international NGO, as a thought partner and resource expert, I aim to increase your impact by improving your people and organizational systems. My organizational consulting focuses on people/human resources and technology management, and how these systems integrate with the rest of your key organizational activities – programs, communications, financials, and resource development. This includes helping to build your capacity in strategic planning and thinking, sustainable infrastructure growth, and data-driven evaluations and assessments.
I work with strategic leaders who value building and sustaining the collective capacity the people doing the work and who are committed to longer-term engagements that build a strong practice of deep reflection and learning, innovation, connection, and action into their organizational culture and DNA.
I’d love to have a conversation with you to see how I can serve you!
Learn more at LinkedIn Mala Nagarajan.