Deepa Iyer, Writer, Activist, Trainer (www.deepaiyer.me), and Former Director of South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT)
An advocate of civil and immigrant rights for over a decade, Deepa Iyer served as Executive Director of South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT) for nearly a decade, and as the chair of the National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA) for two years. SAALT is the only staffed, national, non-profit organization dedicated to fostering civic and political engagement by South Asian communities in the United States. Ms. Iyer is regarded as an expert on the impact of post 9/11 policies, especially as they intersect with civil liberties and immigration. She has published articles about the effect of such policies on South Asian communities, and is the Executive Producer of a 26-minute documentary about bias and hate crimes before and after 9/11 She has been quoted in the Washington Post, National Public Radio, and in ethnic media. Ms. Iyer is an immigrant who moved to the United States from India when she was twelve. Currently, she blogs at www.deepaiyer.me, is at work on a book about the changing American racial landscape, and teaches at the University of Maryland.