Ro Khanna, 32, has been appointed by President Barack Obama as the new deputy assistant secretary of commerce for domestic operations of the United States and Foreign Commercial Service, International Trade Administration at the US Department of Commerce.
He is the first Indian American to be named for a senior position in the Department of Commerce in the Obama administration, whose portfolio will have a direct impact on US-India trade and commercial ties.
Sources told rediff.com that his appointment had been strongly pushed at the highest levels and recommended to the White House by influential US lawmakers including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, US Senators Richard Durbin and Ron Wyden, Congressman Mike Honda and Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, both of California — where Khanna hails from — and by Indian American entrepreneurs, including prominent Silicon Valley entrepreneur Vinod Khosla.
The US-India Business Council had written a letter to the White House and urged Commerce Secretary Gary Locke to appoint an Indian American to a senior position in the Commerce Department, where this person could be a liaison between US and India, to anchor the trade and commercial ties between the two countries.
It’s been a great year for Asian Americans!