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Who Is Kalpana Kotagal? Indian Origin Attorney Nominated By Joe Biden For Key Administrative Role

who is kalpana kotagal
The President of the United States Joe Biden announced that he will be nominating the Indian-origin Civil rights attorney Kalpana Kotagal, along with certified public accountant Vinay Singh for the key administrative positions. Kotagal is the nominee for the Commissioner of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

This announcement on the nominees was made by the White House on April 1 this year. Vinay Singh is nominated for the role of Chief Financial Officer for the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Kotagal, who is the daughter of immigrants from India, is a partner at an American law firm Cohen Milstein. She is a member of the firm’s Civil Rights and Employment practice group.

Not only this, but she is also the co-chair of the firm’s other committee called the Hiring and Diversity Committee. Kalpana Kotagal is also diversity, equity and inclusion expert. She represents disfranchised people in employment and litigations involving Title VII, Equal Pay Act, amongst others.


Suggested Reading: Here’s Why India Needs More Women In Leadership Roles


Her nomination was welcomed by the leading civic Indian-American and South Asian organisation, Indian-American impact. The executive director of the organisation said, “Kotagal is an exceptionally talented litigator who has been a fierce advocate for employment equity and civic rights. She has broken barriers as one of the first South Asian women to become a law partner in the plaintiff’s bar.”

Last month, Biden had nominated two Indian-Americans as US envoys, one of them is political activist Shefali Razdan Duggal, who was selected as his envoy to the Netherlands.

Who Is Kalpana Kotagal?

According to the Cohen Milstein website, Kotagal got her Bachelor of Science degree from Stanford University in 1999 and then her Doctor of Law degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 2005.

Under the clerkships and fellowships section, it was mentioned that she had Wasserstein Public Interest Fellowship from the Harvard Law School from 2018 to 2019. Earlier she also was selected for the Law Clerk under Hon. Better Binns Fletcher for the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit from 2005 to 2006.

She is the co-author of the book Inclusion Rider, which was referred by the Oscar-winning actor Frances McDormand in her 2018 acceptance speech for the Best Actress award.

(Feature Image Credit: The Washington Post)