Washington, DC – Indian American Democrat Congressman Ami Bera from California was elected ranking member of the Space Subcommittee of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, according to his office.
Commenting on the honor, Bera said in a statement, “As a kid who grew up during the height of the space race dreaming of what lay beyond us, it’s an honor to be selected to serve as the ranking member for the Subcommittee on Space.”
Bera, who served on the subcommittee since being elected in 2013 to the 113th Congress, said, “I look forward to working with my colleagues to continue our nation’s leading tradition of innovation in space for the 115th Congress.”
Congressman Bera, who represented Sacramento County, California in the 113th Congress told IAT after the swearing then, “My parents came here from Gujarat in 1958 and now to see their son get sworn in, today this has to be a starting point.”
California is home to some of the world’s leaders in the aerospace industry, including Aerojet Rocketdyne in Rancho Cordova, inside California’s 7th Congressional district, and NASA research facilities across the state. The space industry contributes billions each year to California’s economy.
Bera, a first generation American and a physician, had told IAT in 2013, “We now have to open the door for the next generation, so in the next few years, we can celebrate four or five Indian American Congressmen.”
Bera’s hopes came true in recent election cycle when more Indian Americans got elected to Congress and the Senate. Kamala Harris is the first Indian-American Senator while Bera is joined in Congress by Ro Khanna, Raja Krishnamoorthi and Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal.