For Immediate Release: Date: January 8, 2021
Contact: Priya Purandare, Executive Director
Biden Administration Lacks AAPI Cabinet Secretary for The First Time in 20 Years
WASHINGTON—The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) calls upon President-elect Joe Biden to remain committed to his promise to assemble a diverse Cabinet and administration that truly reflects America as he continues to appoint senior leadership candidates. For the first time in 20 years, there will not be an Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Cabinet Secretary despite the community having put forth one of the most extensive and impressive pool of candidates ever.
“NAPABA stands dismayed that AAPIs will not be represented at the Secretary level position in the inaugural Biden Cabinet,” said A. B. Cruz III, president of NAPABA. “While there have been many historic positive firsts for the incoming Administration, the AAPI community cannot help but feel dismissed. Countless individuals, including numerous members of Congress, community leaders across a broad spectrum, and many leading organizations, including many non-AAPIs, are calling for greater AAPI representation across leadership roles in the ongoing transition appointment process. We trust the new Administration will specifically address this apparent disconnect by nominating and placing AAPIs into key leadership roles going forward.”
The National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) represents the interests of approximately 50,000 legal professionals and nearly 90 national, state, and local Asian Pacific American bar associations. NAPABA is a leader in addressing civil rights issues confronting Asian Pacific American communities. Through its national network, NAPABA provides a strong voice for increased diversity in government and the judiciary on the local, state, and federal levels, advocates for equal opportunity in the workplace, works to eliminate hate crimes and anti-immigrant sentiment, and promotes the professional development of people of color in the legal profession.