WASHINGTON (TIP): The White House on Friday, Sept 1 announced Kenneth I. Juster, one of the foremost experts on India-US trade relations as the next ambassador to India. He succeeds Richard Verma who relinquished charge in November 2016 after Trump’s election as President.
Preferred by New Delhi and vetted by the Trump Administration, Ken Juster is credited with playing a crucial role in the US-India nuclear pact. Till recently Juster served as the deputy assistant to the president for International Economic Affairs, coordinating international economic policy with national security and foreign policy for the Trump Administration. Juster will succeed Richard Verma, President Obama’s nominee, who left New Delhi after Trump won the Presidency in November 2016, leaving the post unfilled for almost a year.
Juster an alumnus of Harvard College received his master’s degree in Public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government and his law degree from the Harvard Law School. Juster’s stint in public service, saw him serving as Under Secretary of Commerce from 2001-2005, Counselor (acting) of the State Department from 1992-1993, and deputy and senior adviser to the Deputy Secretary of State from 1989-1992. In the private sector, he has been a partner at the investment firm Warburg Pincus LLC, Executive Vice President at Salesforce.com, and senior partner at the law firm Arnold & Porter.
His foreign policy expertise was garnered while serving as Chairman of Harvard University’s Weatherhead Center for International Affairs, and as Vice Chairman of The Asia Foundation. Juster also founded and served as the US Chair of the US-India High Technology Cooperation Group, and was one of the key architects of the Next Steps in Strategic Partnership initiative between US and India, which laid the foundation for the historic civil nuclear agreement.
Juster’s long service in Public office and expertise in US-India relations, may indicate a smooth sailing through the Senate confirmation hearing. India’s Modi government has also expressed approval on Juster’s nomination.