NewsIndiaTimes – that’s all you need to know Community 11 News India Times January 26, 2018 By StaffWriter ahseen Chowdhury, a 17-year-old Indian American from Queens, NewYork is keen on running for state senate but he actually won’t be old enough to vote until just a few months before the primary election, according to Pix11 News. “Because I am so young, I have no special interests,” Chowdhury told Pix11 News in an interview. Born and raised in a working-class fami- ly, Chowdhury lives in East Elmhurst, Queens, which is part of the State Senate District 13, covering Jackson Heights, Corona, Elmhurst, and parts of Astoria and Woodside. He hopes to represent his district in the state senate by running against incumbent Jose Peralta, who is a member of the Independent Democratic Conference, or IDC, a group of state senators who collabo- rate with GOP senators. “He (Peralta) caucuses with Republicans but presents himself as a Democrat, and I found that really problematic,” Chowdhury told Pix11 News. Pix11 News reports that Peralta may possibly gain the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo after leaving the IDC but Jessica Ramos, a former official of Mayor Bill De Blasio’s Administration is fully expected to win endorsement of the mayor, who is a rival of Gov. Cuomo. “The fact that I’m a teenager is very key. I have no interest in advocating for anyone other than my community,” Chowdhury told Pix11 News. Expecting to win, Chowdhury has applied to colleges only in NewYork City and if accepted, has asked the schools to allow him take every spring semester off in order to be in Albany when the senate is in session, from January through June of each year. Chowdhury told Pix11 News that he is setting up his schedule in a way that will allow him to be at home, where and when he’s most needed. “I’ve spent my entire life here, so I know this community in and out, and am very dedicated to it,” he told PIX11 News. Chowdhury is the president of the stu- dent union, or student council at Stuyvesant High School in Manhattan, a highly selective public school and “the Manhattan Borough Student President at the NYC Department of Education, where has done everything from changing differ- ent types of school policy through diplo- macy to managing and stabilizing a $150,000 budget for the Student Union,” according to his website. According to his website, the issues Chowdhury is focusing on include senior citizens, affordable housing, street safety, victims of sexual child abuse, immigration, single payer healthcare, education and the environment. On his website it states that Chowdhury “understands the community. He knows what the community needs and what the community believes. He understands how to accurately represent the values that the voters believe in” and “if elected, will do his best to ensure that progressive democratic ideals and progressive democratic princi- ples are accurately represented in the State Senate.” Chowdhury will turn 18 in the summer and the district primary election is sched- uled for Sept. 11 while the general election will be held on Nov. 6. NewYork requires all members of the state legislature to be at least 18 years of age. At 17, Tahseen Chowdhury Is Ready To Run For State Senate Tahseen Chowdhury T By StaffWriter F ormer Ohio State Rep. Jay Goyal of Mansfield, has decided he will not run for the U.S. Congress. He announced his decision after some leading Democrats pressed him to consider doing so. The Columbus Dispatch reported Jan. 17, that Goyal had ruled out the run. “Public service is something that has always been important to me. However, I have certain commitments that I’ve made to my family business and I need to make sure I’m fulfill- ing those com- mitments,” Goyal is quoted saying in the Dispatch. In an earlier interview with News India Times, Goyal said, “Some people have reached out to me and it’s something I am giving thought to and will make a decision shortly.” According to the Dispatch, U.S. Rep. Joyce Beatty, Ohio, from Jefferson Township, and Franklin County Commissioner John O’Grady had approached Goyal and urged him to run in a bid to send a Democrat to Congress. They hoped that Goyal, 37, could help their party turn a red seat into blue as the dis- trict comprises of areas where Goyal had name-recognition from the time he served in the State House. Republicans have held the seat on Capitol Hill since 1982. Goyal was just 26 when he was first elected in 2006 and served three terms from 2007-2013, in the State House, includ- ing some of those years as Majority Leader. He left the political arena in 2012 to help run the family business, Goyal Industries, a manufacturing concern that produces metal fabrications. He has been leading the company for several years now. Goyal graduated with a degree in industrial engi- neering from Northwestern University, he also has an MBA from Harvard Business School and a Masters in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Former State Lawmaker Decides Against Running For Congress By StaffWriter A n organization made up of high profile Indian-American philanthro- pists, community leaders, and politi- cal operatives has been launched to follow up on the historic wins at the ballot box this past November 2017. The Indian American Impact Project (“Impact Project”) and Indian American Impact Fund (“Impact Fund”) was formally launched Jan. 17. It is based inWashington, D.C. and is co-founded by former Kansas Democratic State lawmaker Raj Goyle, cur- rently the CEO of Bodhala, a company that helps the legal community optimize opera- tions, and Deepak Raj, chairman of the well-known non-profit Pratham USA and founder of the Raj Center on Indian Economic Policies at Columbia University. Both initiatives are led by Gautam Raghavan, who previously served as vice president of policy for the Gill Foundation, as an Advisor in the ObamaWhite House, and in various roles for the 2008 Obama campaign and Democratic National Committee. “… these bold new initiatives will help talented and patriotic Indian Americans run for office, win, and lead,” the organiza- tion said in a press release. Goyle will chair the Impact Project, a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization focused on leadership development and training, while Raj will chair the Impact Fund, a political action committee that will endorse and support viable candidates who reflect the Indian American commu- nity’s values, organizers said. “Despite rapid growth and professional success, for too long Indian Americans have been underrepresented in elected office from state capitols to the U.S. Congress,” Goyle is quoted saying in the press release. “As a result, our needs, con- cerns, and priorities often go unheard in the halls of power. At a time when our community and our values are under attack by xenophobic rhetoric and regres- sive policies, it is more critical than ever that Indian Americans build and wield political power to fight back,” he added. “This is our time,” said Raj. “Across the country, a record number of Indian Americans are running for office. We can’t leave it to chance that they will win on their own. We owe them our support — and we have a plan to help them run, win, and lead.” As of January 2018, five Indian Americans currently serve in the United States Congress: Senator Kamala Harris, D- California; and Representatives Ami Bera, D-California, Pramila Jayapal, D- Washington, Ro Khanna, D-California, and Raja Krishnamoorthi, D-Illinois. Impact said it is also tracking an addi- tional 60 Indian-Americans currently serv- ing in state and local office as state legisla- tors, mayors, city council members, judges, and other elected positions. The Impact Project Board of Directors includes Priya Dayananda, managing director of Federal Government Affairs for KPMG LLP, Vinai Thummalapally, former U.S. Ambassador to Belize and former executive director of SelectUSA, and Mini Timmaraju, executive director of External Affairs at Comcast and former National Women’s Vote Director for Hillary for America. The Impact Fund Board of Directors includes Ravi Akhoury, former chairman and CEO of MacKay Shields LLC, and Raghu Devaguptapu, partner at Left Hook Strategies and former political director for the Democratic Governors Association (DGA) and Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (DLCC). Vikas Raj, managing director of AccionVenture Lab, will serve as a non-voting observer on both boards. New Effort Launched To Raise Political Profile Of Indian-Americans Jay Goyal