Veena Reddy Makes History as USAID’s First Indian-American India Mission Director

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Washington, DC – Veena Reddy, a career foreign service officer with USAID, was sworn in as the agency’s first Indian-American Mission Director to India on Monday, July 26. Reddy was administered the oath of office by USAID Administrator Samantha Power in a virtual ceremony attended by Atul Keshap, Chargé d’Affaires at the US Embassy in New Delhi, and Taranjit Sandhu, Indian Ambassador to the US.

Congratulating Veena for taking on this role, and making history as USAID’s first-ever Indian-American India Mission Director, Power noted, “Veena and I also share a bit of history; we both arrived in the United States as immigrants from Ireland––and we may or may not still be trying to overcome an Irish brogue…Veena’s journey from Andhra Pradesh to Ireland, then to the United States embodies the best of what we––a nation of immigrants––has to offer. A determined sense of possibility. A bold vision that paves the way for sustainable and inclusive development around the world.”

Reddy’s career in foreign service “makes her uniquely qualified to lead our Mission in India at a time when the challenges the Indian people face call for thoughtful, strategic leadership and innovative solutions,” commented Power.

Chargé d’Affaires Atul Keshap tweeted, “It was my immense pleasure to attend the swearing-in ceremony for the incoming @usaid_india Mission Director Veena Reddy today. Congratulations and I look forward to working closely with you to advance the #USIndia relationship! #USIndiaDosti”

“Best wishes, Veena @usaid_india. #India – @USAID partnership has the potential to make a difference to the lives of people not only in India & United States, but across the world!” tweeted Ambassador Sandhu.

In a congratulatory tweet, US India Business Council President Nisha Biswal said, “Congratulations Veena! @USIBC looks forward to continuing our partnership with @usaid_india under your leadership.”

“I know our team and our partners on the ground in India are prepared to confront the challenges that lie ahead––and I know Veena is eager to get to work building on existing relationships, forging new ones, and deepening the important, decades-long partnership between the world’s oldest democracy and the world’s largest,” said Power. “I am personally excited to have you taking on this role, Veena, and we’re all grateful that you’ve chosen to take this next step for the Agency. We wish you the best as you transition to Delhi.”

Reddy has been stationed in Cambodia as Mission Director since August 2017. Prior to that, she served in Washington as an Assistant General Counsel, covering legal matters for USAID’s programs in Asia, Middle East, and Afghanistan and Pakistan. She has also served in USAID missions in Pakistan, the Central Asian Republics and Central America. Before joining government service, Reddy was a corporate attorney at Rogers & Wells in New York and at Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld in London and Los Angeles. She holds a J.D. from Columbia University School of Law and an M.A. and B.A. from the University of Chicago.

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