Richard Verma will be the first Indian-American as ambassador to India.
US President Barack Obama has named Richard Verma as the next envoy to India, who will succeed Nancy Powell, if chosen. This is a first time an Indian-American has stepped into the position.
Verma is a graduate from Georgetown University, Lehigh University, and American University. He has served in the US Air Force as an Air Force judge advocate.
Specializing in international law, Verma had the role of a senior adviser to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid from 2002-07. In 2008, he was a member of the Commission on the Prevention of WMD proliferation and terrorism.
He served as the Assistant Secretary of State for Legislative Affairs, at the US Department of State until March 2011, after which he joined the Washington DC office of law firm Steptoe & Johnson. At present, he is a member of the Secretary of State’s Foreign Affairs Policy Board.
Verma’s parents hail from the state of Punjab in India and have lived through the independence struggle and partition of the country. His parents moved from north India to USA in 1960s. Verma’s father, Kamal Verma, taught at the University of Pittsburgh for 40 years, while his mother, Savitri Verma, who passed away two years ago, was a special needs school teacher. They raised five young children in Western Pennsylvania, which is where Verma grew up as the youngest.
He is married to Pinky Verma, an attorney, and they reside in Bethesda, Maryland, a suburb of Washington DC with their six-year-old twins, Lucy and Dylan, and nine-year-old daughter, Zoe.