What to expect from Eric Garcetti as new ambassador to India?

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USIBC and Indiaspora welcome the nomination of California leader to the critical post in a crucial period

Our Bureau
Washington, DC

President Joe Biden last week announced his intent to nominate Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti to become the new US Ambassador to India. The White House release confirmed that President Biden announced his intent to nominate four individuals to serve as US ambassadors: Denise Campbell Bauer, Nominee for Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the French Republic and to the Principality of Monaco, Peter D Haas, Nominee for Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the People’s Republic of Bangladesh, Bernadette M Meehan, Nominee for Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Republic of Chile, and Eric M Garcetti, Nominee for Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to the Republic of India. Garcetti’s selection, which has long been anticipated, an ambassadorship in India would allow Garcetti to work on such issues as pandemic relief, climate change, trade, and immigration, offering him new foreign policy experience.

Indiaspora, a non-profit organization of global Indian diaspora leaders, expressed their enthusiasm for the Biden administration’s announcement of the nomination of Los Angeles (LA) Mayor Eric Garcetti to the post of new US Ambassador to India.

As the Mayor of Los Angeles, the United States’ second-largest city, Garcetti would bring valuable political and administrative experience to the role. A close political confidante of President Biden who served as a Co-chair of his campaign in 2020, Garcetti also would have the President’s ear. “We are excited that President Biden has nominated a reputed leader who has proven himself on several fronts,” said the founder of Indiaspora MR Rangaswami, a Silicon Valley-based entrepreneur and investor, about Garcetti’s nomination.

“It speaks volumes to the importance of the US-India relationship that a close and trusted ally of President Biden may be America’s point person in Delhi.”

“Mayor Garcetti recognizes the importance of international cooperation and how to bring different actors together on the world stage,” said Executive Director of Indiaspora Sanjeev Joshipura, speaking to Garcetti’s accomplishments as Mayor of Los Angeles, which include bringing the 2028 Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games to the United States for the first time in more than 30 years, as well as leading an effort of more than 400 fellow mayors across America to adopt the Paris Climate Agreement.

US Congressman Brad Sherman and US-India Business Council (USIBC) President Nisha Biswal on Saturday extended their wishes to the new US envoy to India Eric Garcetti.

“As Co-Chair of the Congressional India Caucus, I look forward to working with @MayorOfLA Garcetti to strengthen the relationship between the world’s oldest and largest democracies,” tweeted Brad Sherman. “An inspired choice by @POTUS to name @ericgarcetti for US Ambassador to India. Excited to see Mayor Garcetti put his bits of Hindi to good use and advance the US-India partnership. Proud that @USIBC had the chance to engage Mayor Garcetti with India’s Ambassador at the time,” tweeted Nisha Biswal.

Garcetti has a master’s degree in international affairs from Columbia University and also studied international relations as a Rhodes scholar at Oxford University in Britain. Before he entered politics, Garcetti briefly taught diplomacy and international relations at Occidental College and the University of Southern California (USC).

Eric M Garcetti has been the Mayor of the City of Los Angeles (LA) since 2013, following 12 years as a member of the City Council, including six as Council President. As Mayor, Garcetti oversees the busiest container port in the Western Hemisphere, the largest municipal utility in the country, and one of the busiest airports in the world. He led LA’s successful bid to return the summer Olympic Games to American soil for the first time in three decades. He currently chairs LA Metro, the country’s second-busiest transit agency, which is building or extending 15 new transit lines, and shifting to an all-electric fleet.

Garcetti co-founded Climate Mayors and led more than 400 US mayors to adopt the Paris Climate Agreement. He is the current Chair of C40 Cities – a network of 97 of the world’s biggest cities taking bold climate action and has led the organization’s engagement and expansion in India as well as C40’s global response to the COVID pandemic through the sharing of best practices and resources.

During 12 years as an Intelligence Officer in the US Navy Reserve Component, Garcetti served under the Commander, US Pacific Fleet and the Defense Intelligence Agency, retiring in 2017 as a Lieutenant.

A Rhodes Scholar, he studied at Queen’s College, Oxford, and the London School of Economics and Political Science.

Garcetti was selected as an inaugural Asia 21 Fellow of the Asia Society and taught at Occidental College’s Department of Diplomacy and World Affairs, as well as at the University of Southern California’s School of International Relations.

He has lived and conducted fieldwork on nationalism, ethnicity, and human rights in Southeast Asia and Northeast Africa. He is the founding Chair of the Latino Alliance of Mayors at the US Conference of Mayors, serves on the Board of National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials, and speaks fluent Spanish.

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