Amid Growth, ABIC Names New Deputy Director, Announces New Idaho Chapter
CHICAGO, IL — The American Business Immigration Coalition (ABIC) has named senior nonprofit executive Rovika Rajkishun as the organization’s new Deputy Director. In her new role, Rajkishun will help guide ABIC’s fundraising, communications, and growth in support of federal immigration reform to create jobs, grow the economy, and keep families together.
ABIC also announced today the launch of its new Idaho chapter, as well as new ABIC members and partners including the Idaho Dairymen Association and American Hort to advance the Durbin-Graham Dream Act, the Bennett-Crapo Farm Workforce Modernization Act, and the SECURE Act.
ABIC now has a total of 14 chapters across the country in Florida, Maine, Massachusetts, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, Illinois, Wisconsin, Texas, Arizona, Utah, Nevada, Idaho and New Hampshire. ABIC represents over 1,200 bipartisan CEOs and employers promoting common sense federal and local immigration reform.
John Rowe, Exelon Corporation Chairman Emeritus and ABIC Co-Chair, said:
“We welcome Rovika and our new members to ABIC. We look forward to working together to help pass immigration reform that supports the economy of the United States, provides American companies with the talent they need, and allows the integration of immigrants into our economy as consumers, workers, entrepreneurs, and citizens.”
Josh Hoyt, Democracy Partners and ABIC Co-chair, said: “Rovika is an accomplished national leader in the work for fairness to immigrants, and she has lived the challenges of being undocumented. The combination of expertise and personal experience will greatly deepen ABIC’s leadership team.”
Rovika Rajkishun, Deputy Director of the American Business Immigration Coalition, said: “I am deeply grateful for this opportunity to help drive ABIC’s growth during such a critical time for our country as we work to bring our immigration system into the 21st century to the benefit of families, employers, and our economy. I look forward to bringing my vast experience in fundraising, communications, organizing, and organizational growth to my new role.”
Rebecca Shi, Executive Director of the American Business Immigration Coalition, said: “We are thrilled to welcome Rovika to the ABIC’s leadership team. Rovika’s over two decades of experience in fundraising, communications, and growth will deeply benefit our goals. We are honored to welcome ABIC’s new members and partners AmericanHort, Idaho Dairymen Association and Tyson Foods. Together we will expand our efforts to provide employers with the high and low skilled talent they need to rebuild from the pandemic, and provide a path to permanence for the 11M undocumented workers, Dreamers, farm workers, and immigrants Temporary Protected Status.”
Rajkishun was the Interim Co-Executive Director of the New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC), where she also previously served as the Vice President of Development and Communications, leveraging a statewide rapid-response fundraising campaign in the wake of the 2016 presidential election. During her time at NYIC, she more than tripled the organization’s budget in just four years and helped to win key legislative victories including restoring driver’s licenses access to every New Yorker regardless of immigration status. She also served as Interim Co-Executive Director of NYIC Action, the NYIC’s sister 501(c)4.
During her tenure as Interim Co-Executive Director, the NYIC worked on many successful advocacy campaigns including the inclusion of mixed status families in stimulus payments, a Federal Small Business Administration program for $100 million for nonprofits working with small businesses, fixes to the PPP Program to be more inclusive of small businesses, and a New York State excluded worker’s fund of $2.1 billion, a first-of-its-kind in the country.
Born and raised in Guyana, Rovika immigrated to Brooklyn, NY at age ten and was undocumented for a decade. As a member of an extended mixed status family, she brings lived experience and the hopes and aspirations of her family to her work. Rovika has lived with her husband in Sunset Park, Brooklyn for 20 years where they are now raising three children. Rovika is a graduate of Barnard College of Columbia University.
ABIC’s New Members and Partners
- The Idaho Dairymen Association has worked to protect Idaho’s dairy industry through environmental, legal, and legislative efforts since 1924.
- AmericanHort represents the entire horticulture industry, including breeders, greenhouse and nursery growers, retailers, distributors, interior and exterior landscapers, florists, students, educators, researchers, manufacturers, and all of those who are part of the industry market chain.
- Tyson Foods is a leading global protein-focused food company based in Springdale Arkansas.
The American Business Immigration Coalition (ABIC) promotes common sense immigration reform that advances economic competitiveness, provides companies with both the high-skilled and low-skilled talent they need, and allows the integration of immigrants into our economy as consumers, workers, entrepreneurs, and citizens.