|Republican National Committeewoman from California|
|Assumed office |
July 19, 2016
|Preceded by||Linda Ackerman|
Harmeet Kaur Dhillon
October 2, 1968
Chandigarh, Punjab, India
|Spouse(s)||Kanwarjit Singh (divorced)|
Sarvjit Randhawa (2011)
|Residence||San Francisco, California|
Sea Ranch, California
|Alma mater||Dartmouth College|
University of Virginia
Harmeet Kaur Dhillon (born October 2, 1968) is an American lawyer and Republican party official. She is the former vice chairwoman of the California Republican Party, and the National Committeewoman of the Republican National Committee for California. She owns a law practice called Dhillon Law Group Inc.
Early life and education
After attending grade school in Bronx, New York while her father completed his medical training, Harmeet Dhillon grew up in Smithfield, North Carolina, but for five years her mother drove her 45 miles (72 km) to a private school in Raleigh, North Carolina.
She entered Dartmouth College at age 16, and wrote for the conservative student newspaper, Dartmouth Review. In her junior year she became an editor at the Dartmouth Review. During that time the Review was criticized for publishing an article attacking the college president James O. Freedman, comparing Freedman, who is Jewish, to Adolf Hitler. Dhillon "denied that the column was anti-Semitic, saying its point had been misinterpreted by people trying to twist the issue to their own ends." She added, "I could see if you were Jewish, you could be offended, possibly." She said she had asked several Jewish staff members to read the column before its publication and they told her they were not offended nor did they expect the column to be viewed as anti-Semitic.
Legal career and political activism
She was an unsuccessful candidate for the California Assembly from San Francisco in 2008, in a district with only 8% registered Republicans. She polled 17% against Democrat Tom Ammiano, the strongest Republican result since 1994. Her mother had raised her $250,000 campaign war chest from the Indian-American community. She ran for the California Senate in 2012, but she was unsuccessful.
Dhillon filed a lawsuit in April 2017 against UC Berkeley on behalf of the Berkeley College Republicans (BCR) and Young America's Foundation for freedom of speech issues, particularly the school cancelling Ann Coulter's speech.
In August 2017, James Damore, the Google memo writer, hired Dhillon to be his lawyer against Google. Dhillon's firm has said it is also willing to represent more employees from Google that have similar stories to Damore, though Dhillon has already lost an appeal to the National Labor Relations Board. Damore's lawsuit against Google also was dismissed pursuant to a mandatory arbitration clause.
Dhillon had represented a racial and religious discrimination lawsuit in 2007; she cited a ruling from New Jersey which required fire fighting departments to accommodate the beards of Muslim men. Dhillon has also given interviews in which she has condemned the Republican Party for alleged discrimination against non-whites. She has also been heavily criticized by Republican activists for her ties to American Civil Liberties Union, as well as her past contributions to the political campaigning of Kamala Harris.
Titles and accomplishments
Dhillon was elected to the California Republican Party's Board in 2013 and became the National Committeewoman for the Republican National Committee in 2016. She also gave the opening prayer at the 2016 Republican National Convention in Punjabi, a first at the RNC.
In early 2017, Dhillon interviewed to be the Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights in the Trump Administration Department of Justice. However, Trump eventually chose Eric Dreiband for that position.
Her law firm, Dhillon Law Group, successfully represented former BCR president Troy Worden in October 2017, dismissing a temporary restraining order and defeating the permanent restraining order brought against him by BAMN organizer Yvette Felarca.
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- Cadelago, Christopher (March 10, 2017). "Harmeet Dhillon, California Republican leader, a candidate for Justice Department post". Sacramento Bee. Retrieved 2017-08-01.
- Megerian, Chris. "California Republicans tell Assembly GOP leader Chad Mayes to step down". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 2017-11-12.
- "Restraining order against UC Berkeley College Republicans leader dismissed". East Bay Times. 2017-10-30. Retrieved 2017-11-12.
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