Indian Americans Vinay Reddy, Gautam Raghavan, get White House posts

Vinay Reddy and Gautam Raghavan
Vinay Reddy (left) and Gautam Raghavan

Gay rights activist Raghavan served as White House liaison to LGBTQ community under Obama.

President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris have named two more Indian Americans to senior White House positions with Vinay Reddy to be director of speechwriting.

Reddy and India-born Gautam Raghavan, who will be the deputy director of the office of presidential personnel, join at least eight other persons of Indian descent named to senior posts in the incoming Biden-Harris administration.

Biden-Harris transition announced four other appointments Tuesday. Anne Filipic as director of the office of administration and management Ryan Montoya as director of scheduling and advance, Bruce Reed as deputy chief of staff and Elizabeth Wilkins as senior adviser to the chief of staff.

“These diverse, experienced, and talented individuals demonstrate that the president and vice president-elect are building an administration that looks like America and is ready to deliver results for working families on day one,” the transition said.

Reddy currently serves as a speechwriter on the Biden-Harris Transition and served as Senior Advisor and Speechwriter for the Biden-Harris Campaign.

He previously served as chief speechwriter to Vice President Biden in the second term of the Obama-Biden White House, after which, he worked as Vice President of Strategic Communications at the National Basketball Association.

During the Obama-Biden Administration, he also served as senior speechwriter at the US Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Health and Human Services, deputy speechwriter for the Obama-Biden reelection campaign, and speechwriter for his home state Senator, Sherrod Brown of Ohio.

Reddy grew up in Dayton, Ohio, the middle of three sons in an immigrant family and is a product of Ohio public schools from kindergarten to Miami University to The Ohio State University College of Law. He currently lives in New York with his wife and their two daughters.

Raghavan currently serves as Deputy Head of Presidential Appointments on the Biden-Harris Transition. Prior to joining the transition, Raghavan served as Chief of Staff to US Representative Pramila Jayapal, the chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

Previously, Raghavan served as an Advisor to the Biden Foundation, and as Vice President of Policy for the Gill Foundation, one of the oldest and largest private foundations dedicated to the cause of LGBTQ equality.

During the Obama-Biden Administration, Raghavan served in the White House as the liaison to the LGBTQ community as well as the Asian American & Pacific Islander community.

He also served in the White House Liaison Office for the US Department of Defense and as Outreach Lead for the Pentagon’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” Working Group.

He is the editor and one of the coauthors of the book West Wingers: Stories from the Dream Chasers, Change Makers, and Hope Creators Inside the Obama White House, a collection of essays by 18 former staffers.  The book takes a behind-the-scene look at the Obama presidency, and covers moments, events, and trends over eight years of the Democrat’s presidency.

West Wingers: Stories from the Dream Chasers, Change Makers, and Hope Creators Inside the Obama White House,

A first-generation immigrant, Gautam was born in India, raised in Seattle, and graduated from Stanford University. He lives in Washington, DC, with his husband and their daughter.

“These experienced individuals are joining my administration to carry out policies that will put our nation on a path to building back better than ever before,” said Biden.

“They are respected leaders whose values and priorities align with my own and who will dutifully execute their roles to serve the American people.”

“Their dedication to overcoming the challenges facing our country are rooted in their diverse backgrounds and experiences, helping deliver the change America needs in these difficult times,” Biden said.

“Our country is grappling with a pandemic, an economic crisis, a long-overdue reckoning on racial injustice, and a climate crisis. To meet these challenges, we need a team that reflects the very best of our nation,” said Harris.

“These public servants have the knowledge and experience to help us deliver on our commitment to build our country back better. And I look forward to working with them to usher in a brighter future for all Americans,” the Indian American leader said.

Biden had on Monday named Indian American Bharat Ramamurti, a long-time congressional aide to Senator Elizabeth Warren, as deputy director of the National Economic Council, the key department that advises the American president on domestic and global economic policy.

Other Indian American nominees include Neera Tanden as Director of Office of Management and Budget, Vivek Murthy as US Surgeon General nominee, Vedant Patel as White House assistant press secretary and Mala Adiga as policy director for First Lady Jill Biden.


Indian American Bharat Ramamurti named to Biden-Harris economic team (December 22, 2020)

Biden names Indian American Vedant Patel Assistant Press Secretary (December 19, 2020)

Indian American Neera Tanden tipped to head Biden’s budget office (November 30, 2020)

Indian American Vivek Murthy returns as Biden’s surgeon general (December 7, 2020)

Indian American Mala Adiga named policy director to Jill Biden (November 23, 2020)

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