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Published on Jun 24, 2013
2013 NCCWSL Women of Distinction Honoree: Reshma Saujani is the former Deputy Public Advocate of New York City and Executive Director of The Fund for Public Advocacy.
As a public servant, Saujani harnessed the power of her office to promote civic engagement and government accountability. She spearheaded public projects aimed at spurring citywide job and economic growth, engaging immigrant communities, supporting small businesses, improving education, empowering the public, and using technology to vastly improve the quality of life for all New Yorkers. She also helped immigrant communities gain access to capital and government services and conducted the first-ever survey of immigrant entrepreneurs to identify and break down the barriers faced in launching businesses. As the daughter of refugees who fled the violence of Idi Amin's Uganda for the freedom of the United States, she has a personal interest in ensuring a political voice and economic opportunity for all Americans.
Saujani also founded Girls Who Code, a nonprofit organization with the mission to educate, inspire, and equip girls ages 13--18 with the skills and resources necessary to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). She is the author of Women Who Don't Wait in Line,which will be published in 2013.
In 2010, Saujani became the first Indian American woman to run for Congress. She campaigned in New York's 14th congressional district as a passionate Democrat and community organizer.
Saujani earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Illinois, a master's degree in public policy from Harvard University, and law degree from Yale Law School.