Four Indian Americans have been recognized in Politico Magazine’s “Politico 50” this year for their contributions to politics in the U.S. The magazine names a list of 50 people whom they deem to be “thinkers, doers and visionaries transforming American politics” in the current year.
Among those acknowledged on the list include South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley, columnist Ramesh Ponnuru (and his wife, political adviser April Ponnuru), economist Raj Chetty, and surgeon and writer Atul Gawande.
Haley, coming in at No. 9 on the list, was integral in the removal of the Confederate flag from outside the statehouse in the wake of the Charleston shootings, noted Politico. “It was a bright spot in a year marked by racial tension,” according to the magazine’s bio on Haley.
Ramesh Ponnuru and his wife April both came in at No. 32 on the list. Politico describes them as “the young reigning couple of forward-thinking conservative ideas.” Ramesh is a senior editor at National Review and a columnist for Bloomberg View, and is a critic within the Republican party, according to Politico.
At No. 39 on the list is Chetty, an economist at Stanford and Harvard universities. Chetty and a team of researchers did a study and found out that growing up in different neighborhoods has a serious impact on social mobility. As stated in the magazine, “Little political attention has been paid to the role of neighborhoods in social mobility since civil rights reform efforts in the 1970s. But thanks at least in part to Chetty’s fresh approach to the data, politicians are taking note again.” Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., is now using Chetty’s ideas in public speaking events.
Gawande came in at No. 50 on the list. His essay in 2009 on skyrocketing healthcare costs indirectly led to President Barack Obama’s push for what would become the Affordable Care Act. The surgeon wrote a book released in the fall of 2014 saying doctors are not prepared to help terminally ill people die well. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy topped the list. Other notable figures included Pope Francis (No. 4), Secretary of State John Kerry (No. 7) and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (No. 8).