As the Senior Legislative Advocate, Deepen Gagneja is responsible for the California Immigrant Policy Center’s health and public benefits portfolio in Sacramento. Deepen manages the strategic relationships and research to push California forward in protecting and providing for all its residents, including the most vulnerable.
Prior to joining CIPC, Deepen served as a policy and budget consultant for Assembly-member Mike Gipson of South Los Angeles. As such he worked on policy addressing the root causes of poverty, healthcare disparities, inequities in educational attainment, and other forms of injustice. He also served as a California Senate Fellow managing numerous policy areas and legislation that impacted the residents of his hometown in the Inland Empire. Prior to becoming a full-time policy wonk, Deepen worked at Point Foundation in Los Angeles where he spearheaded the first-of-its-kind and largest national community college scholarship program to support LGBTQ students from marginalized communities.
In his early career, as a White House Intern for the Obama Administration, Deepen researched leadership strategies which were used to create professional development programs for senior staff—and, inadvertently, served as a great tool in shaping his own management skills. His most memorable experience, though, was giving Michelle Obama a hug.
Deepen graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Public Policy from the University of California, Riverside. In his free time, he often pretends to be Bobby Flay in the kitchen and develops new recipes to test out with friends.