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Biography of Secretary of State Nandita Berry

Secretary of State Nandita Berry

Nandita Berry is Texas’ 109th Secretary of State and the first Indian-American to hold the office. She was appointed by Governor Rick Perry and sworn in on January 7, 2014.

As secretary of state, Secretary Berry is one of six state officials who comprise the executive department of the state of Texas. Among the office’s wide-ranging responsibilities, the secretary of state serves as the chief election officer, the governor’s liaison on border and Mexican affairs, and Texas’ chief protocol officer for state and international matters. Additionally, the office manages the business and public filings for Texas.

Secretary Berry’s personal story embodies what is possible through hard work and determination in Texas. Arriving from India at the age of 21 with no more than $200 to her name, she worked diligently to earn her law degree and become one of the most accomplished attorneys in the state.

Prior to becoming secretary of state, Secretary Berry specialized in technology transactions as senior counsel at Locke Lord LLP in Houston. She was formerly in-house counsel for a Fortune 500 company, where she handled corporate and securities matters.

Secretary Berry has a long and distinguished record of civic service. She was vice chair of the University of Houston Board of Regents and sat on the boards of the Houston Zoo Inc., South Asian Chamber of Commerce, Houston Area Women’s Center, and the Community Family Center of Houston.

A graduate of Mt. Carmel College in Bangalore, India, Secretary Berry subsequently received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Houston. She earned a law degree from the University of Houston Law Center.

Secretary Berry and her husband, Michael, live in Houston with their two children.