Sandy Padala, the Founder and CEO of Rex Programming, is a global entrepreneur working towards bringing high quality technology education to everyone. Her journey from a conservative Indian family, to one of the few women in major corporate IT management roles, to a start-up founder, is an inspiration to everyone, especially for minorities, immigrants and women.
“I grew up in a 300 sq ft home that I shared with 5 people”, says Sandy. “I was an average student who excelled in Math but was not good in History, Biology, or English. My Mom was strict and taught me the value of hard work. Dad was lenient and taught me to believe in myself.” By 11th grade, it was clear that math and computer science would be her key to a successful future.
Sandy went on to earn a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from the University of Toledo. For the first eight years she lived in the US, she played it safe. She never questioned anyone and always agreed to what her bosses said because of her insecurities about her English and finances, and her upbringing in a culture that taught girls that they should defer to men.
She improved her English by watching movies and attending classes. As her confidence grew and her financial and visa situation stabilized, she worked her way up to senior IT management positions at reputed corporations like Harley-Davidson Motor Company as well as serving on nonprofit boards, like the YMCA. In her last full-time corporate position, she ran a multi-million dollar, 200+ person project. Of the 200 people on her team, less than 3% were women.
Sandy says “It is important to make the family a part of your journey.” Since her son was six, he wanted to learn to create video games, “I looked high and low for a suitable environment for him,” Sandy explained, “when I couldn’t find one, I decided to create one.”
She has spent the last four years overcoming many obstacles as she builds her company, Rex Programming. She says it is critical for entrepreneurs to remain open-minded and adjust their strategy with developing situations and circumstances.
Rex aims to provide organizations the best-in-class cutting-edge technology courses.
“I was struck by the comment made by Sandy, that coding is the reading and writing for the future generation. That really resonates when you realize how basic reading and writing is and what that means for coding going forward.”
– Curt Hazelbaker President/CEO, YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas.
The confident entrepreneur realizes that she is the best salesperson of her product and services. She is conscious that she has a long entrepreneurial journey ahead and is poise about it. In the technology domain where there are few female entrepreneurs, Sandhya Padala has emerged as a role model that others can look up to.