Biden’s Cabinet Adds Three More South Asian Americans to Key Posts

The Quint
·3-min read

A week away from taking his seat, US President-elect Joe Biden has named three more South Asian Americans to his diverse Cabinet.

Sonia Aggarwal will work as Senior Advisor for Climate Policy and Innovation at the Office of Domestic Climate Policy, Sameera Fazili as Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, and Zayn Siddique as Senior Advisor to the White House Deputy Chief of Staff.

“To tackle the challenges facing our country and restore faith in the government we must build an administration with experienced, principled, and dedicated appointees. These individuals are part of a White House staff that is ready to build back better immediately to make a difference in the lives of working families,” said the incoming President.

Who Are They?

Senior Advisor for Climate Policy and Innovation at the Office of Domestic Climate Policy
Senior Advisor for Climate Policy and Innovation at the Office of Domestic Climate Policy

Sonia Aggarwal previously worked as co-founder and VP of Energy Innovation. While at Energy Innovation, she acted as founding executive director of the Climate Imperative project. She led America’s Power Plan, bringing together 200 electricity policy experts, and directed the team that developed the Energy Policy Simulator to analyse the environmental, economic, and public health impacts of climate and energy policies.

Born and raised in Ohio, she graduated from Haverford College in astronomy and physics, and earned a masters at the Stanford University in civil engineering.

Deputy Director of the National Economic Council
Deputy Director of the National Economic Council

Sameera Fazili has been the Economic Agency lead on the Biden-Harris Transition. In the Obama-Biden administration, Fazili served as a senior policy advisor on the White House’s National Economic Council and as a senior advisor at the US Treasury Department in both Domestic Finance and International Affairs.

Originally from Buffalo, Fazili now lives in Georgia with her husband and three children. She is a graduate of Yale Law School and Harvard College.

Senior Advisor to the White House Deputy Chief of Staff
Senior Advisor to the White House Deputy Chief of Staff

Also an implant from the Biden-Harris Transition Team, Zayn Siddique has been serving as the Chief of Staff for the Domestic and Economic Team.

Previously, Siddique was the deputy policy director for Beto O’Rourke’s presidential campaign and a senior policy advisor to his senate campaign.

Originally from Bangladesh and raised in New York, Siddique is a graduate of the Princeton University and the Yale Law School.

Digital director in the Office of the First Lady.
Digital director in the Office of the First Lady.

In addition, Garima Verma has been named digital director in the Office of the First Lady, who will work closely with Dr Jill Biden and play a critical role in supporting the work of her office.

Verma served as an audience development and content strategist on the Biden-Harris campaign. Before joining the campaign, Verma was a volunteer with the content team, designing graphics for distribution to Biden-Harris volunteers across the country.

She was born in India and grew up in Ohio and the Central Valley of California. Verma is a graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles.

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