Jaya Badiga, first Andhra-born woman to become US judge, offers Telugu welcome

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Jaya Badiga, first Andhra-born woman to become US judge, offers Telugu welcome

Jaya Badiga, an Indian-American lawyer, is the first Telugu woman to be nominated to a US court. In California's Sacramento County Superior Court, Badiga has been appointed as a judge. She is the daughter of businessman and former Machilipatnam Lok Sabha MP Badiga Ramakrishna.

A widely shared video of Badiga welcoming Telugu speakers and concluding her remarks with the Sanskrit prayer Asato Ma Sadgamaya follows her appointment as a judge in the United States. Judge Robert S. Lapham's vacancy has been replaced by Badiga.

In her former role as a commissioner for the Sacramento County Superior Court, Badiga oversaw a calendar pertaining to child support and domestic abuse. Having worked in the field of family law for over a decade, she is a qualified specialist in the field.

Judge Jaya Badiga’s journey

Badiga was born in Andhra Pradesh, India, in the city of Vijayawada. Hyderabad is where her educational adventure started. She graduated from Osmania University with a bachelor's degree in political science and psychology. Later on, she relocated to the US to further her education.

Badiga attended Boston University in the US to earn a master's degree in international relations and international communication. After that, she completed her Juris Doctor at Santa Clara University. After passing the California State Bar Examination in 2009, Badiga started practicing law. In addition to working as an attorney at the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services and the California Department of Health Care Services, she was a sole practitioner from 2018 to 2022.

Badiga made contributions to legal education as a faculty member at the McGeorge School of Law and the National Institute of Trial Advocacy. Governor Gavin Newsom of California announced her appointment.

Raj Singh Badhesha, another judge of Indian descent, was among the eighteen additional judges who were appointed. As the first Sikh to be appointed to the Fresno County bench, Badhesha is a Democrat. In addition, he became the first Sikh judge in California, charged with upholding the Sikh headgear custom of donning the dastar or pagri.