Indian Americans host fundraiser for California Gov. Gavin Newsom

California Governor Gavin Newsom, with host Ramesh Kapur to his left, flanked by Manoj Shinde, and Raj Dichpally, at the July 8 fundraiser in Kapur’s home in Massachusetts. PHOTO: Courtesy US India Security Council.

The Indian American organization, US India Security Council, hosted a fund raiser in Massachusetts, for California Governor Gavin Newsom July 8, 2024. It was held at the home of USISC President Ramesh Viswanath Kapur and his wife Susan.

The room, filled with many Indian origin attendees, entrepreneurs, and young people, included prominent business leaders Vikram Rajadhyaksha, Dr. Venu Kondle, Yash and Jigna Shah, Manoj and Vaishali Shinde, Mathias and Natalia Troger, Shirish and Allison Nimgaonkar, tech entrepreneurs Thomas Arul, Manny Arora, Priya Samant, Yogi Gupta, Rishi Yadav, and community leaders including Raj Dichpally, Ranjani, Sandip Asija, Rahul, Bernice Singh and Dr. Anil Saigal, and Restaurateur Vinod Kapur, who offered the catering services for the evening, attended the event. Rishi Kumar, former candidate for the U.S. House representing California’s 16th Congressional District, was also present.

Organizers applauded the Governor and said they recognized his “steadfast support for entrepreneurial initiatives and his principled stance on critical issues.” Kapur added that he feels the Governor “has a good chance of being the 47th President of USA.”

Kapur also thanked Governor Newsom for vetoing the proposed SB 403 bill, which aimed to ban caste discrimination, and for his interest in visiting a Hindu temple in Florida in the coming months.

Governor Newsom shared his life story from entrepreneur to Governor, recounting his early days in the 80s when he sold wine from his living room as a teenager. He spoke of the highlights of his tenure on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, as Mayor of San Francisco in 2004, including his sister-city initiative with the state of Karnataka, when he also visited India with a large delegation of business and community leaders from San Francisco. He expressed his eagerness to visit India again as Governor.

The Governor emphasized the importance of AI, technology, entrepreneurship, and the contributions of immigrants. He noted that, “42% of all startups in California are founded by immigrants, and that they are the lifeblood of our state. He added that despite the rise of xenophobia, California had endured and emerged stronger. “We overcame the divisive rhetoric of Prop 187 in the 1990s, and today, we celebrate our diversity rather than merely tolerate it. As a result, we lead in manufacturing, boast the highest number of scientists, researchers, and Nobel laureates, and continue to drive innovation globally.”

Addressing the unique strengths of Massachusetts, Governor Newsom highlighted how renowned institutions of higher learning serve as conveyor belts for talent, fostering competition not just on price but on talent. He noted that what sets California and Massachusetts apart is their human capital—the best and the brightest.

In a state where 27% of the population is foreign-born, and where the population is equivalent to 21 other states combined, California must see itself in the context of the world, Newsom said.

Those present at the gathering interacted with each other on speculations about the Democratic Party and the fate of President Joe Biden as candidate for President.



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