Hot to Watch: GOP Candidate for Governor, Neel Kashkari

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By Carisa Carlton

Laguna Beach, California

Laguna Beach resident, Neel Kashkari, is running for California governor.

Neel KashkariKashkari hopes to create a legacy of creating jobs and fixing schools, and he is opposed to Jerry Brown’s San Francisco to Los Angeles “crazy train” plans. Some pan Kashkari’s new campaign on schools and jobs as a superficial commercial. Kashkari responded to criticism saying he will roll out a policy plan soon. In the meantime, Kashkari says, “Low income families don’t want welfare; they want jobs.”

Kashkari, 35 years younger than our current governor, is of Indian descent and like 80% of Indians, he is Hindu. Kashkari believes his ethnic background will help him get elected as governor of California, a state where the number of minorities match the number of white non-Hispanic population; and he believes respect for knowledge is Hinduism’s most important value.

Asked under what circumstances he would lie, Kashkari replied, “Never,” adding he would lie to save someone’s life.


Kashkari says he will not repeal gun laws and he doesn’t believe adding another gun law will resolve gun violence related issues. Instead, he wants to bring professionals together to create a system to alert authorities of possible mental health issues; and, he is willing to go deeper into the issues that contribute to mental health issues.

Kashkari owns four guns: two 9mm Glock 17 pistols; a Weatherby rifle (though he is not a hunter); and a Remington 870 Express shotgun. He first learned to shoot a gun in high school with friends, but before he purchased his first gun, he completed a handgun safety course.

Kashkari says he has been to the gun range a few times and he has shot at dead tree stumps near his Truckee, California home. Otherwise, he would use a gun if he feared for his life, or to protect someone’s life.

Social Media

Kashkari prolifically posts campaign updates on all major social media channels. He interacts with reporters and community members regularly. Sometimes playful, but always respectful, he uses hashtags and emoticons to signal that he is non-confrontational in his response.

Life in Laguna Beach
Two years ago after his 2012 divorce from campaign contributor Minal Kotterman, the self-made five-millionaire moved to Shaw’s Cove, a Laguna Beach neighborhood situated above a marine reserve.

Laguna Beach is a wealthy seaside enclave in Southern California with an average household net worth of $1,053,132 and above national average expenditures. Often compared to Menton on the French Riviera, Laguna Beach is 90.9% white.

Crescent Bay Laguna BeachWhen Kashkari is not crusading for jobs and education, he paddles his kayak from Crescent Bay to Seal Rock. The channel between Crescent Point and Seal Rock is often choppy, and navigating around the northern reef can be challenging. Dolphins and whales are often spotted at Crescent Point.

Kashkari is dating a special someone, but he is protecting her identity as of this writing.



Kashkari Quick Facts

Full Name: Neel Tushar Kashkari

Born: July 30, 1973

Hometown: Stow, Ohio

Bachelor’s degree: University of Illinois, Bachelor of Science, May 1995

Master’s degree: University of Illinois, Master of Science, Mechanical Engineering, January 1998

TRW (Redondo Beach): Aerospace Engineer, R&D Principal Investigator, January 1998-July 2000

Master’s of Business Administration: The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, May 2002

Goldman Sachs (Menlo Park/San Francisco): Associate, started August 2002; Vice President, Investment Banking Division, left July 2006

Treasury (Washington, DC): Senior Advisor to the Secretary of the Treasury, July 2006-July 2008; Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for International Affairs, July 2008-Octobeer 2008; Interim Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Financial Stability, October 2008-May 2009

PIMCO (Newport Beach): Managing Director and Head of Global Equities, December 2009-January 2013

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Author: Carisa Carlton

Carisa Carlton is the Editor in Chief of Laguna Beach Gazette. Learn more about Carlton at .

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