I am an attorney, activist, business leader, and lecturer on business ethics at New York University.
When my parents emigrated from India in the late 1960s in search of economic opportunity, we fit three generations of our family in a two-bedroom apartment over the bodega we were running. My dad got a job working the night shift fixing subway tracks, and eventually we started a family business in hospitality. I grew up bussing tables, filling vending machines, doing motel laundry, and helping out on construction sites. Together as a family, we lived the American Dream, something that's nearly impossible in today’s rigged economy.
But when the financial crisis hit, the business that my parents had spent their entire lives building struggled. My parents had worked hard to send me and my brothers to college, and now we had to step up and guide our family’s hospitality company through immense financial hardship and back to growth. I know what it's like to make payroll when times are tough. Empty storefronts are not political talking points to me, they’re personal.
Once we got the family business back on track, I worked on both of President Obama's campaigns and as an associate on the White House Advance Team. After Donald Trump’s election, I became a full-time organizer and helped build communities like The Arena to support a new generation of American leaders. I took to the streets - marching and fighting for the most marginalized among us, including serving as a volunteer attorney for the ACLU when Trump’s Muslim Ban came down.
I’m a long-time Board Member of Atlas:DIY, a youth immigrant legal services organization in Brooklyn on the front lines of fighting back against Trump and ICE. I’m also on the Board of Urban Upbound, an organization dedicated to breaking cycles of poverty around public housing in New York. I serve as a visiting fellow at The Century Foundation writing on progressive policy, and on the Adjunct Faculty at New York University’s Stern School of Business teaching business ethics.
I'm running for Congress because over the past thirty years our infrastructure has deteriorated, rents have skyrocketed, and public housing has crumbled. It's become too expensive to go to college, and too costly not to. Upward mobility is the promise of New York, but lately it feels like the exception rather than the rule. After three decades of no progress, and three decades of the same representation, we need leaders with vision that is bold and progressive. Working people, small business owners, immigrants, activists, and educators on both sides of the East River deserve to be heard, and I will represent each and every one of us.
BA, Political Science, Stanford University
MPP, Cambridge University
JD, NYU School of Law
New York, 2011