Swati A. Dandekar

Swati Dandekar is a former Ambassador, state utility regulator, and state legislator.

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Phone: (319) 533-4224

Most recently, Swati served as U.S. Executive Director and Ambassador to the Asian Development Bank (ADB).  In this position, Swati dealt with 60 countries in Asia and the Pacific Rim, where she worked on energy, telecom, water and transportation issues as well as helping the ADB develop infrastructure projects in many of these countries.  In January 2017, the new administration recalled all Ambassadors appointed by the Obama Administration.  Swati was part of this recall.

In 2011, Swati was appointed to the Iowa Utilities Board by the Governor of Iowa.  She focused on telecom issues, including rural connection and rural call termination issues.  At the same time she focused on renewable energy and Smart Grid technology.  As a member of the Iowa Utilities Board, Swati was an active member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) and served on the NARUC Committee on Telecommunications and the Committee on International Relations.  Swati was also a member of the Mid-American Regulatory Conference and served on the Advisory Council of the Iowa Energy.

In 2002, Swati was elected to the Iowa House of Representatives, making her the first Indian-born American to hold a state legislative position. She was reelected for three consecutive terms. In 2008, Swati was elected to the Iowa Senate, where she chaired the Senate Commerce Committee. In 2011, Swati was elected President of the National Foundation of Women Legislators, where her national platform consisted of Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM) education, increased application of broadband communication for economic growth, and PTSD issues faced by our veterans.

As a member of the Iowa Utilities Board and state legislator, Swati led several overseas delegations to India and Africa.  These delegations focused on international trade, women’s rights and health issues, pharmaceutical sciences, and agricultural, energy, and telecom development.

Swati was born in Nagpur, India, and traveled to the United States in 1973 to join her husband Arvind and start a family.  She earned her bachelor’s degree from Nagpur University in Chemistry & Biology and a post graduate diploma in Dietetics from Bombay University in India.  In addition to her degrees, Swati is fluent in Hindi, Gujrati and Marathi languages.  Swati also has working knowledge of Urdu, Punjabi and Bengali languages.  Swati and Arvind live in Marion, Iowa, where they raised their two sons, and own a successful business.

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