WASHINGTON, D.C. - Verma, a former key aide to then secretary of state Hillary Clinton, will be the second Indian-American to be put in charge of a job involving India.
However, there is no chance of Verma being confirmed before the Modi visit as the Senate left town Sept 18 with lawmakers getting into campaign mode for the Nov 4 Congressional elections. Any confirmation hearing for Verma is likely to be scheduled only after the elections. Currently, he is a senior counsellor at the Steptoe & Johnson law firm and the Albright Stonebridge Group, a business advisory company led by former secretary of state Madeleine Albright, according to a White House announcement. Verma is also a Senior National Security Fellow at the Centre for American Progress and serves on the boards of Human Rights First, the Clinton Foundation, and the National Democratic Institute.
A Lehigh University graduate who received a JD from American University, and an LL.M from Georgetown University Law Centre, Verma served as assistant secretary for legislative affairs at the State Department from 2009 to 2011 under Hillary Clinton.
He was also senior national security advisor, counsel and foreign policy advisor to the Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid from 2002 to 2007, and an associate at Steptoe & Johnson from 1998 to 2002. Verma served on active duty in the US Air Force from 1994 to 1998 and received, among other decorations, the Meritorious Service Medal and Air Force Commendation Medal.
Earlier in his career, Verma was a Field Representative for the National Democratic Institute in Eastern Europe and worked in the House of Representatives for Congressman John P. Murtha.