June 10th: Happy Birthday Bobby Jindal: The First Indian-American Governor

Mike Melli , 10 Jun 2012
United States Governor Bobby Jindal of Louisiana

The first ever Indian-American to be elected Governor turns 41 today.  Bobby Jindal (birth name Piyush) is the son of Punjabi immigrants, who moved to the U.S. a few months before he was born.  He is the current 2-term Republican (conservative) Governor of Louisiana, and has been considered a rising star in his political party for some years now.

President Obama talks with Governor Jindal aboard Marine 1 (photo credit: nola.com)

We won’t get into politics here (namely because I disagree with most of his views), but let’s collectively give some recognition for his truly impressive career, and for inspiring more Indian-Americans to run for office in the United States.

Career Highlights
  • Ivy League education with degrees in Public Policy & Biology from Brown University
  • Rhodes Scholar at Oxford, earned Masters degree in Political Science (was also admitted to Harvard Medical School and Yale Law School, but did not attend)
  • Worked briefly as a consultant with McKinsey and Company
  • Appointed the youngest ever Secretary of Health and Hospitals (Louisiana) at 25 years old
  • Appointed the youngest ever President of the University of Louisiana System at 28 years old
  • Elected the second ever Indian-American member of the United States House of Representatives and served 2 terms
  • Elected the first ever Indian-American Governor (Louisiana) and is currently in his 2nd term
  • Was on the short list for potential Vice President selection in 2008, and is rumored to be a contender for the position again in 2012 with Republican Presidential nominee Mitt Romney

Bobby Jindal was raised Hindu, but converted to Catholicism while in college. He has been married to wife Supriya Jolly (from Delhi) for 15 years, and they have 3 children together (Selia Elizabeth, Shaan Robert, and Slade Ryan). Here are some pics of Jindal and his family from his most recent inauguration ceremony earlier this year.

Bobby Jindal & wife Supriya (photo credit: nola.com)
Jindal children: Selia Elizabeth, Shaan Robert, and Slade Ryan (photo credit: nola.com)
Jindal family awaiting the Oath of Office (photo credit: nola.com)
Governor Bobby Jindal takes the Oath of Office (photo credit: nola.com)

Oh and if you were wondering where the nickname ‘Bobby’ came from here’s the explanation from Jindal himself.

“Every day after school, I’d come home and I’d watch The Brady Bunch. And I identified with Bobby, you know? He was about my age, and ‘Bobby’ stuck.” He’s gone by ‘Bobby’ ever since.

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