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President Biden Names 4 Indian Americans to Top Positions at Department of Energy

President Biden Names 4 Indian Americans to Top Positions at Department of Energy

  • Tarak Shah become first person of color, first Indian-American, and first openly LGBTQ person to serve as chief of staff.

President Joe Biden has appointed Indian American Tarak Shah as Chief of Staff at the U.S. Department of Energy becoming the first person of color, first Indian-American, and first openly LGBTQ person to serve in that position at DOE. 

Additional appointees include Tanya Das, Chief of Staff, Office of Science; Narayan Subramanian, legal advisor, Office of General Counsel; and Shuchi Talati, Chief of Staff, Office of Fossil Energy. 

“These talented and diverse public servants will deliver on President Biden’s goal to tackle the climate crisis and build an equitable clean energy future,” Shah said in a DOE press release. “Guided by their expertise, breadth of experience, and following the science, these Department of Energy appointees will contribute to creating a clean energy economy that produces millions of good-paying American jobs and safeguards the planet for future generations.”

Shah is an energy policy expert who has spent the last decade working on combating climate change. The DOE says Shah “has spent the last decade of his life working on his lifelong passion of combating climate change.” From organizing coalitions to working at the highest levels of the U.S. government, he has “designed and implemented policies that have contributed to the clean energy revolution, fostered profound advancements in renewables and energy efficiency, and formed core portions of U.S. global climate commitments.”

At the Biden-Harris Transition, Shah was the personnel lead for the Climate and Science team. From 2014-2017, he served as Chief of Staff to the Under Secretary for Science and Energy at DOE. Prior to his time in government, Shah has also worked on political campaigns, including President Obama’s Senate and presidential campaigns. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois and his M.B.A from Cornell University.

Das was most recently a professional staff member on the U.S. House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, where she worked on legislation on a range of issues in clean energy and manufacturing policy. She earned her Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and her B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

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Subramanian was a Visiting Research Fellow at the Center for Law, Energy, & the Environment at Berkeley Law leading a project tracking regulatory rollbacks, and served as a Fellow at the Initiative for Sustainable Energy Policy at Johns Hopkins University and Data for Progress. Subramanian holds a J.D. from Columbia Law School, an M.P.A. from the School of Public & International Affairs at Princeton University, and a B.S. in Earth & Environmental Engineering from Columbia University.

Talati was most recently a senior policy advisor at carbon180 where she focused on policies to build sustainable and equitable technological carbon removal at scale. She also served as a policy volunteer on the Biden-Harris campaign. She earned a B.S. from Northwestern University, an M.A. from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. from Carnegie Mellon University.

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