Indian-origin Attorney Vivek Malek has been appointed as the first non-white treasurer of the US state of Missouri, Governor Mike Parson announced.
Haryana-born Malek, 45, will replace Republican Treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick, who is leaving the position to become state auditor in January.
“Vivek Malek will be our next State Treasurer of the State of Missouri. Vivek’s appointment will fill the vacancy created by the election of Treasurer Scott Fitzpatrick to the Office of Missouri State Auditor,” Parson wrote in a Facebook post.
Wildwood resident Malek came to Missouri in 2002 to get his Master’s degree in business administration from Southeast Missouri State University.
He started with his law practice in 2006 and opened a law firm in 2011.
“When he arrived, he had just $300 in his pocket, but he didn’t make excuses,” Parson said in the post.
Recently, Malek was selected for the Southeast Missouri Board of Governors.
“Vivek is a family man, small business owner, conservative leader, talented attorney, and a true embodiment of the American dream. We know he will work hard every day to safeguard the people’s money and trust,” Missouri Governor added.
Malek practices in all aspects of immigration law, including business, family, asylum and removal defence.
He has worked with numerous companies across various industries and has helped in bringing skilled workers to the US in all visa categories, according to his LinkedIn bio.
He was recognised by the Missouri Senate (2015) and Missouri House (2007) for his service and contributions to Missouri communities.
“It is my honour of life to be able to serve as the next State Treasurer of the state of Missouri, and I promise to give the job and the people of Missouri all and best,” Malek, a father of three, was quoted as saying in the statement.
Malek has prepared and filed petitions, appeals and motions with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the Department of State (DOS) and the United States Department of Labor (DOL).
Parson said that Malek’s story is an “inspiring proof that the American dream can and will live on for the next generation of Missourians”.
“President Reagan once said immigrants are one of the greatest sources of American greatness, and both Vivek and I agree. Through our shared values, Vivek helps legal immigrants embrace our nation and achieve their American dream too,” Parson wrote in the Facebook post.
“As a Republican, strong capitalist, and conservative Missourian, we know Vivek will be a principled leader, who works hard every day to safeguard the people’s money and bring opportunity to Missouri families and their communities,” he added.
Malek was awarded the Minority Business Leader Award by the St. Loui Business Journal in 2010, earned the ‘Up and Coming lawyers Award’ by Missouri Lawyers Media in 2010, and was recognised as Top 30 under 30 by Business Today magazine in 2007, among other awards and recognition, the statement said.