Indian-American US Navy veteran Shanti Sethi has been appointed as the executive secretary and defence adviser of US Vice President Kamala Harris's office, as per reports.
Sethi is the first Indian-American US Navy combat ship commander. The news was confirmed by Herbie Ziskend, Harris' senior adviser. Sethi as the defence adviser will coordinate with the National Security Adviser documentation across the Office of the US Vice President.
In the past, the Indian-American officer has commanded USS Decatur, a guided-missile destroyer, from December 2010 to May 2012. Sethi was also the first woman commander of the US Naval vessel to visit India. The officer joined US Navy in 1993. At the time, the combat exclusion law was in effect so Sethi had limited duties. When she became an officer, the exclusion was lifted.
During an interview with the USA Today, Sethi said, "I was able to move on to have a career path that was much more open to me because I was going into this very male-dominated environment."
Who is Shanti Sethi?
Her father moved to America from India in the early 1960s. Shanti Sethi is now retired and she was only the 15th female officer to command a major US Navy combat warship and first Indian-American. Between 2021 to 2022, she was working as the Navy's Senior Military Advisor to the Secretary of the Navy.
After moving to the US, Shanti Sethi's family settled in Reno, Nevada. Sethi went to Norwich University and graduated with a degree in International Affairs in 1993. She also has Masters of International Policy and Practice from The George Washington University's Elliot School of International Affairs.
Shanti Sethi is a decorated officer of the US Navy. She has received awards such as Navy Commendation Medal, Meritorious Service Medal, unit and campaign awards and Navy Achievement Medal.