From the former United States Ambassador to the United Nations, an inspirational memoir of family, hope, and the power of the American Dream.
Decades before their daughter surprised the nation by becoming governor of South Carolina, Nikki Haley's parents had a dream. Ajit and Raj Randhawa were well-educated, well-off Sikhs in the Punjab region of India. But despite their high social status, the Randhawas wanted more for their family-the opportunities that only America could offer.
So they left behind all they had known and settled in Bamberg, South Carolina (population: 2,500). As the first Indian family in a small Southern town in the early 1970s, the Randhawas faced ignorance, prejudice, and sometimes blatant hostility. Nikki remembers stopping at a roadside produce stand with her father, who always wore his traditional Sikh turban. Within minutes, two police cars pulled to make sure they weren't thieves.
But the Randhawas taught their children that they should never think of themselves as victims. They stressed that if you work hard and stay true to yourself, you can overcome any obstacle. The key is believing that can't is not an option.
The family struggled to make ends meet while starting a clothing business in their living room, eventually growing it into a multimillion- dollar success. At age twelve, Nikki started to do the bookkeeping and taxes after school. After graduating from college and entering the business world, she watched business owners like her parents battle government bureaucracy and overregulation.
Her frustration inspired her to get into politics and run for the state legislature. That first campaign, against an entrenched incumbent, led to racial and religious slurs and threats-but Haley, like her parents, refused to back down. She won on a promise to fight for reform, lean budgets, and government accountability, which is exactly what she did-much to the dismay of South Carolina's old guard politicians.
Soon she had a reputation as a conservative leader who could get things done. In the same state where her family was once ridiculed, she inspired a diverse grassroots following. In November 2010 she was elected South Carolina's first female governor and first nonwhite governor, and only the second Indian American governor in the country.
Haley's story, as told firsthand in this inspiring memoir, is a testament to the power of determination, faith, and family. And it's proof that the American Dream is still strong and true in the twenty- first century.
The daughter of Sikhs who immigrated to the States from India in the late 1960s, Haley grew up in small-town Bamberg, S.C. Though she asserts it's "a different place" today, Haley recalls being discriminated against: competing as a child in a Wee Miss Bamberg pageant, which gave prizes for a black queen and a white queen, she and her sister were given beach balls as consolation prizes, as there was no crown for Indian girls. However, her remarkable life is proof that she and the state have overcome their once tenuous relationship. She graduated from Clemson in the 1990s and began her political career shortly thereafter, mounting a successful underdog campaign that ended in the South Carolina House of Representatives. When Haley decided to run for governor, she earned the endorsements of Sarah Palin and the (deposed) governor's wife, Jenny Sanford, and she doesn't hesitate to invoke God's role in her election as well. An avowed advocate of the Tea Party, Haley insists that she and the party are a natural fit because "they understand the importance of putting principles before politics." Along the way she's learned that "Winners do what losers don't want to do." Haley's book details her impressive progress, but unfortunately reflects today's political practice of hurling criticism at one's opponents early and often.
Good to see an Indian American succeed both in terms of career and family. The way she overcame hurdles is inspiring and very kind of her to share her thoughts. Very useful for young adults like who are starting their career.
What I believe in.
Nikki has almost the same views as I do. Reading her book detailed my views.
Can’t is not an option
This is very good and show that she can be the good President