New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Nov. 20 the appointment of Kapil Longani as counsel to the mayor, the city said in a news release.
As counsel to the mayor, Longani will advise the mayor on legal matters involving City Hall and the executive staff, as well as provide counsel to the mayor on legal aspects of policy and administrative matters.
“I am honored to serve as the Counsel to the Mayor. I look forward to serving the people of New York City as we continue to implement the mayor’s vision of making New York City the fairest big city in America,” said Longani in a statement.
The Indian American lawyer has over a decade of legal experience in both the private and public sectors in New York City and Washington, D.C.
As counsel to the mayor, he will be responsible for developing and advancing policy proposals by coordinating efforts across multiple mayoral offices and agencies, as well as overseeing special projects for the mayor.
The counsel to the mayor also serves as the liaison to the Conflict of Interest Board, the Mayor’s Judiciary Committee and General Counsels at city agencies.
“Kapil is bringing extraordinary experience and talent to City Hall,” said de Blasio in a statement. “His commitment to public service and strong ethical grounding are clear from his legal background, and I know he will be a valuable part of our team.”
Longani is the son of immigrants who instilled in him a strong belief in the power of government to improve people’s lives and a deep commitment to public service, his bio noted.
Before joining the administration, Longani served as senior counsel to Ranking Member Elijah E. Cummings for the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Longani acted as the Democratic staff's lead investigator in several inquiries including the Flint water crisis, contractor fraud at the Department of Defense, the Department of State's rejection of the Keystone Pipeline application, the Trump Administration's response to Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Environmental Protection Agency's Waters of the United States rulemaking process.
Prior to his work in Congress, Longani served as an assistant U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia where he prosecuted cases involving sexual assault, homicide, robbery, narcotics and illegal firearms.
He previously worked as a litigator in New York City at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, and served as a law clerk to Judge Roger L. Gregory of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, and Judge Richard Smoak of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida.
Longani holds an undergraduate degree from Cornell University and legal degrees from the University of Florida, Yale and Oxford University.