After almost six months of lying vacant, the US ambassadorial position in India will finally see the President’s nominee coming down to New Delhi. Los Angeles Mayor and a close ally of the US President, Eric Garcetti, will be the new Ambassador to India. However, his name is to be cleared by the US senate as per procedure.
The LA Mayor was expected to be in the President team in cabinet, however, due to a controversy erupting within Garcetti’s team he missed out on that chance. The President however is sending the man who was part of his election campaign team with two clear aspects he will be pursuing in his tenure – Indo Pacific and Climate Change.
Meanwhile, in India, a senior government source, said Garcetti would be “great for the relationship”.
Garcetti served 12 years as an Intelligence Officer in the US Navy Reserve Component and served under the Commander, US Pacific Fleet and the Defense Intelligence Agency before retiring in 2017 as a Lieutenant.
Serving as a Mayor for Los Angeles since 2013, Garcetti made a name for himself by aggressively pushing the climate agenda. Garcetti co-founded Climate Mayors and led more than 400 U.S. mayors to adopt the Paris Climate agreement. He is the current Chair of C40 Cities – a network of 97 of the world’s biggest cities taking bold climate action and has led the organization’s engagement and expansion in India as well as C40’s global response to the COVID pandemic through the sharing of best practices and resources.
In 2019, he launched the Los Angeles’ Green New Deal — a comprehensive roadmap to protect the environment and make LA the first-ever Sustainable City. The plan includes making the city carbon neutral by 2050 — solidifying LA’s position as the national leader in solar energy, electric vehicle infrastructure, and green jobs. Due to his climate initiatives LA became the number-one solar energy city in America.
Garcetti has been the Mayor of the City of Los Angeles following 12 years as a member of the City Council, including six as Council President. As Mayor, Garcetti oversees the busiest container port in the Western Hemisphere, the largest municipal utility in the country, and one of the busiest airports in the world. He currently chairs LA Metro, the country’s second-busiest transit agency, which is building or extending 15 new transit lines, and shifting to an all-electric fleet.
He also led the first National Day of Action on Immigration, and has put local resources toward providing Dreamers and others with legal aid to fight deportation.
A Rhodes Scholar, he studied at Queen’s College, Oxford and the London School of Economics and Political Science. Garcetti was selected as an inaugural Asia 21 Fellow of the Asia Society, and taught at Occidental College’s Department of Diplomacy and World Affairs, as well as at the University of Southern California’s School of International Relations.
He was born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, Los Angeles county, California. He is the son of public servants and the grandson and great-grandson of immigrants from Mexico and Eastern Europe. He is married to Amy Elaine Wakeland and has a daughter, Maya.