She is the chief human resources director for the nation’s largest employer, the federal government. Join Kiran Ahuja, the director of the Office of Personnel Management, as she addresses the rollout of the federal COVID-19 vaccine policy. Ahuja will have an integral role in enforcing the new requirements and will discuss implementation as various agencies grapple with the challenge.

Highlights

OPM Director Kiran Ahuja announced this month that enforcement of the federal vaccine mandate can begin Nov. 9. She said the policy is meant to encourage the federal workforce to get vaccinated because it is the best tool the country has against the coronavirus and its variants. "This is not about removing people from the federal government... We care about the workforce... We are focused on getting folks vaccinated, we feel it is the best resource we have." (Washington Post Live)
Kiran Ahuja, the director of the Office of Personnel Management, says the federal government should be the "model employer,” especially when contemplating the future of work post-pandemic. “We have to be leaning into telework or remote work…We are the largest employer, but we need to stay competitive.” (Washington Post Live)
President Biden issued an executive order in July focused on improving accessibility, diversity and inclusion in the federal workforce. OPM Director Kiran Ahuja said, “It is a whole of government initiative. It is very bold, very ambitious, very exciting about what we’re trying to do in the federal government to be the model employer of what it means to really embrace diversity in this country.” (Washington Post Live)

Kiran Ahuja

Provided by U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM).

Kiran Ahuja serves as the Director of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM). After more than two decades in public service and executive nonprofit work, she was nominated by President Joe Biden for her current role before being confirmed by the United States Senate on Tuesday, June 22, 2021. Director Ahuja is the first South Asian American and first Asian American woman to lead OPM.

In her role, Director Ahuja leads OPM in its work to recruit, retain, and honor the American workforce that’s landing rovers on Mars, fighting climate change and cancer, and building the country back better.

Previously, Director Ahuja served as OPM Chief of Staff from 2015-2017. In this role, she worked on policies and initiatives that reached over 2.1 million workers at every federal agency and department. While Chief of Staff, Director Ahuja led inter-agency efforts to engage federal workers, attract skilled talent into government, and expand opportunities in federal service to every American. She also worked to strengthen OPM’s internal operations as an agency and provide stable leadership at a challenging time.

Her deep commitment to OPM’s mission, track record of bringing people together to solve tough problems, and expertise in human capital issues led to her appointment in November 2020 to then-President-Elect Biden’s Agency Review Team as Team Lead for OPM.

Director Ahuja knows how important investing in America’s workforce is because of her years of experience in the federal government in both career and appointed positions. She started her career first as an attorney at the Department of Justice and later spent six years as President Barack Obama’s Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.

In addition to her federal service, Director Ahuja spent years as a leader in the non-profit sector. She previously served as the founding Executive Director of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum and most recently served as CEO of Philanthropy Northwest. Director Ahuja is a graduate of Spelman College and the University of Georgia School of Law.