WASHINGTON : US President Joe Biden is yet again planning to add an Indian American to his top team.
He has announced his intent to nominate Nisha Desai Biswal; who was one of the most visible Indian American faces in the administration of former President Barack Obama; to serve as deputy chief executive officer of the United States International Development Finance Corporation, according to a press release from the White House.
Her nomination will now have to be cleared by the US Senate.
Biswal has had a high-profile career of over 30 years of experience in US foreign policy and international development programmes within the White House, US Congress and the private sector.
An expert on US-India relations, she is currently senior vice president for international strategy and global initiatives at the US Chamber of Commerce, overseeing the US-India Business Council and US Bangladesh Business Council.
Earlier she served as assistant secretary for south and central Asian affairs at the US Department of State from 2013 to 2017, where she oversaw the US-India strategic partnership during a period of unprecedented cooperation, including the launch of an annual US-India strategic and commercial dialogue. She is also a recipient of the Indian government’s top honour for Global Indians – the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman, which she received in 2017.
Biswal also initiated the C5+1 dialogue with Central Asia and the US-Bangladesh partnership dialogue during her tenure as assistant secretary. Prior to that, Biswal was assistant administrator for Asia at the US Agency for International Development (USAID), directing and supervising USAID programmes and operations across South, Central, and Southeast Asia.
She has also spent over a decade on Capitol Hill, working as staff director on the state and foreign operations sub-committee on appropriations as well as professional staff on the foreign affairs committee in the US House of Representatives.
Biswal serves as the chair of the advisory committee on voluntary foreign aid and is on both the board of the National Democratic Institute and the US Institute of Peace international advisory council.
She is a member of the United States Institute of Peace Afghanistan study group and the Aspen Institute’s India-US Track 2 Dialogue on climate and energy. Biswal is a graduate of the University of Virginia, where she studied international relations and economics.