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Indian American Preeta Bansal honored at APAICS gala

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Rep. Grace Meng presents the group’s Stewardship Award to the former OMB official.

US Rep. Grace Meng (D-NY) presented the annual Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS) Stewardship Award to Indian American Preeta Bansal at the organization’s 24th annual Awards Gala on Tuesday.

“I’m honored to present the APAICS Stewardship Award to Solicitor General Preeta Bansal for her leadership in public service, and for her efforts to empower communities,” said the New York Democrat. “Asian Pacific American Heritage Month is a time to honor and celebrate the achievements of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI). Tonight, we recognize and celebrate Preeta for her immense contributions, and for her service and leadership to our community and the nation.”

APAICS Stewardship Award is presented annually to individuals who are leaders within AAPI communities in public service for their commitment to serve communities.

Preeta Bansal (Courtesy of LinkedIn)
Preeta Bansal (Courtesy of LinkedIn)

The annual award gala is conducted during the Asian Pacific American Heritage Month to celebrate AAPI leaders who have positive impacts in their professional careers and communities.

Bansal served as a General Counsel and Senior Policy Advisor to the federal Office of Management and Budget from 2009 until 2011.

Prior to her work in the Obama administration, she served as a law partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, and as the Solicitor General of the State of New York during Attorney General Eliot Spitzer’s first term. She also has been a member and past chair of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF)

Currently the CEO of Social Emergence Corporation, a social-benefit, not-for-profit corporation that focuses on empowering communities, Bansal also teaches at the MIT Media Lab, where she is a Senior Advisor for Social Machines.

Also read:Indian American lawyer Preeta Bansal on shortlist for judgeship in New York

APAICS is a national non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting Asian Pacific American participation and representation at all levels of the political process, from community service to elected office.

Bansal, who was raised in Lincoln, Nebraska, received an A.B. magna cum laude from Harvard University in 1986 and a J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1989. She served as Supervising Editor of the Harvard Law Review. After graduating from Harvard Law School, she clerked for Chief Judge James L. Oakes of the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit from 1989 to 1990 and for US Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens from 1990 to 1991.

Following private practice in Washington, DC, Bansal worked in the Clinton Administration from 1993 to 1996 as a Counselor in the U.S. Department of Justice and as a White House Special Counsel. At the Justice Department, she assisted Joel Klein, Assistant Attorney General for the Antitrust Division, on United States v. Microsoft and other matters.

In 1999, newly elected New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer recruited her to serve in his office as Solicitor General of the State of New York, the statutory ranking officer after the Attorney General. In that capacity, she was in charge of the office’s appellate activities, supervising 45 lawyers in the Solicitor General’s Office who filed 40 to 50 appellate briefs each week, and she also helped manage the significant legal positions and amicus strategy of the 600 lawyers in the Attorney General’s Office.

2002-2003. She was a Visiting Fellow at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in 2003.

Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle chose Bansal for the bipartisan United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) in 2003, at which time she also rejoined private law practice in New York at Skadden, Arps. As a partner at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, Bansal led the firm’s appellate litigation and complex legal issues practice. In a “Public Lives” profile of her in 1999, the New York Times referred to her as a “legal superstar.” She has appeared as a commentator on legal issues and U.S. Supreme Court matters on CNN, C-SPAN and PBS news programs. She was mentioned as a possible Solicitor General in the Barack Obama administration before Harvard Law School Dean Elena Kagan was announced as Obama’s selection for the post.

Bansal is a Henry Crown Fellow at the Aspen Institute and a Member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She received the National Organization of Women’s “Woman of Power and Influence Award” in 2006 and was named one of the “50 Most Influential Minority Lawyers in America” by the National Law Journal in its inaugural list in 2008. In 2006, she was a co-chair for then-Attorney General-Elect Andrew Cuomo’s transition team, and previously served as a board member of the Clinton Global Initiative, the National Women’s Law Center and the New York City Bar Justice Center, and as a Commissioner on Mayor Bloomberg’s Election Modernization Task Force.


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