|An inspirational selection by an inspirational leader
Washington, DC. Indian-American Sonal Shah, an eminent economist who heads Google's philanthropic arm, has been appointed an advisory board member by President-elect Barack Obama to assist his team in a smooth transition of power. The 40-year-old Shah will be part of a panel composed of individuals with significant private and public sector experience who will offer their expertise in their respective fields to Obama's transition team. The Obama transition team is headed by former White House chief of staff John Podesta, longtime Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett, and Pete Rouse, the President-elect's Senate chief of staff.
"Sonal Shah is immensely qualified for this high honor and opportunity to serve," said Sanjay Puri, Chairman of the U.S.-India Political Action Committee (USINPAC). "Our entire community should be proud as her selection is a significant validation of the increasing attention paid to talented Indian-Americans in our society and our tremendous growth and maturity politically. We wish her all the best and are confident she will play a meaningful role and distinguish herself in this new capacity."
Shah, who was named the â€˜Person of the Year 2003' by 'India Abroad' publication, currently works for Google.org on their Global Development team, where she is engaged in defining their global development strategy and promoting the firm's philanthropy work. Prior to joining Google, she was Vice President at Goldman, Sachs and Co. and developed and implemented its environmental strategy. As the former Associate Director for Economic and National Security Policy at the Center for American Progress, Shah worked on trade, outsourcing, and post conflict reconstruction issues.
Before working at the Center for American Progress, she served as the Director of Programs and Operations at the Center for Global Development managing the daily operations and serving as a strategic adviser to the president. Shah also developed and managed policy and advocacy programs for the Center. Prior to that, she worked for eight years at the Department of Treasury on various economic issues and regions of the world. Shah was the Director of the office covering Sub-Saharan Africa, worked in Bosnia and Kosovo after the war, and served as the senior adviser to the Under Secretary and Assistant Secretary at the Department of Treasury during the Asian financial crisis.
Shah is the co-founder of the U.S.-based non-profit organization Indicorps which offers one-year fellowships for Indian-origin Americans to work on specific development projects in India.
The U.S.-India Political Action Committee (USINPAC) is the political voice of 2.5 million Indian-Americans. USINPAC provides bipartisan support to candidates for federal, state and local office who support the issues that are important to the Indian-American community. For more information, go to www.usinpac.com.