The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus has announced that Indian American Nisha Ramachandran will assume the position of executive director. Ramachandran, the first South Asian American to serve in this role, took over the post effective July 22. Ramachandran most recently managed her own consulting business that focused on AAPI advocacy. Prior to that, she served as policy director for the National Council of Asian Pacific Americans and as an APAICS fellow in the office of Congressman Ami Bera, D-California.
Several CAPAC members voiced their support of the appointment. “I’m very excited to welcome Nisha Ramachandran as the new Executive Director of CAPAC. Nisha comes to CAPAC after nearly a decade of experience working with the AAPI community on a national scale,” CAPAC chair U.S. Rep. Judy Chu said in a statement. “Her breadth of knowledge on the issues important to the community – from civil rights to healthcare – make Nisha the perfect leader to help guide CAPAC in this critical moment as we address the continuing problem of anti-Asian violence and work to rebuild after the coronavirus pandemic in a way that ensures AAPIs are included. I am looking forward to working with Nisha to advance AAPI priorities and am eager to see her succeed,” Chu added.
Vice chair and U.S. Rep. Grace Meng, D-New York, said: “I am thrilled to congratulate and welcome Nisha Ramachandran as the new Executive Director of CAPAC. She has worked within the national Asian American and Pacific Islander community and brings a wealth of knowledge, expertise and experience to our caucus. I look forward to working with her on addressing the many critical issues impacting AAPIs.”
“Congratulations to Nisha Ramachandran on being selected to serve as the next Executive Director of CAPAC. With her appointment, Nisha becomes the first South Asian to fill this important leadership position. Nisha has nearly a decade of experience working within the AAPI community, including serving as an APAICS fellow with my office,” Bera said. “I’m confident Nisha will be a great Executive Director and will play a valuable role in uplifting the AAPI community during this critical moment in our nation’s history. As a proud CAPAC Member, I look forward to working with Nisha to advance the important work of our organization.”
OCA-Asian Pacific American Advocates and its executive director Thu Nguyen also congratulated Ramachandran. “Nisha is a friend and phenomenal leader for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. Her strong community ties give us great confidence in her ability to advocate for and with AAPIs,” Nguyen stated. “Nisha’s historic appointment as the first South Asian American executive director of CAPAC is well-deserved and we are thrilled that she will bring her expertise to Congress at this critical moment. We look forward to strengthening OCA’s work with CAPAC on anti-Asian violence, voting rights, and other shared priorities in the years ahead,” she said. Ramachandran replaces Krystal Ka’ai, who left CAPAC earlier this month to lead the White House’s expanded Initiative on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders.