Nikki Randhawa Haley 

South Carolina, Feb. 22, 2004
Gary Singh

  • Nikki is a graduate of Clemson University with a B.S. in Accounting. After graduation, Nikki became the Accounting Supervisor of FCR, Inc. in Charlotte, NC, where she managed a staff that was responsible for the accounting and reporting of the corporation and five of its subsidiary companies.
  • In 1996, after educating herself in the corporate world, she returned as Controller in the family business, Exotica International, Inc, where she started at the age of 11.
  • She served as member of the Board of Directors of the Orangeburg County Chamber of Commerce before the business relocated to Lexington County. Currently, she serves as a member of the Board of Directors, the Government Relations Committee, and the Doris Burkett Scholarship Committee of the Lexington County Chamber and is co-chairing the Lexington Gala for 2004.
  • Nikki is also the Treasurer and President-Elect of the Greater Columbia Chapter of the National Association of Women Business Owners, a member of the Lexington Medical Foundation and 2004 Lake Murray Dam Walk Committee benefiting Becky’s Place, the West Metro Republican Women, the Lexington County Republicans, Magnolia Junior Women’s Society of Lexington, the PTA, and Homeroom Mom for her daughter’s kindergarten class.
  • In addition to community involvement, Nikki is dedicated to her parents, sister and her family, and husband Michael, all of which own their own businesses in Lexington. Nikki and Michael, have two children, Rena 5 and Nalin 2.Her father is a retired professor of biology who chaired the department of natural and computer sciences at Voorhees College. Randhawa-Haley's fighting spirit comes from her mother, Raj Randhawa, a businesswoman who started Exotica International, an upscale clothing firm with a revenue of $1.8 million in 2003, according to Nikki's father Ajit Randhawa.
  • "Morally, spiritually, and financially, we will help her all the way," said her husband Michael who runs his own company, the National Barter Company.
  • Randhawa-Haley will be filing her papers between March 16 and 30 -- for the June Republican primaries -- for the final race in November.
  • But she says she met Koon a couple of weeks ago and he said he might be running. That hardly deterred her and she has a hectic fundraising schedule, including a March 6 Indian American fundraiser in Lexington.

  • "Bobby Jindal really inspired me to run. He has shown so much courage and put a face on the Indian community. Because it is scary, because people don't know the culture, the religion. I've already faced these things - 'What religion is she? Is she Muslim? Is she part of that group with Osama bin Laden?'"

  • Congressman Joe Wilson, South Carolina Republican, has praised the business acumen and dedication of Indian-American businesswoman Raj Randhawa and members of her family, who were featured on the August cover of South Carolina’s Greater Columbia Business Monthly magazine. Rep. Wilson said in a press release issued on Sept. 4 from his Washington, D.C., office, that Randhawa had successfully managed her clothing company, Exotica International, for 26 years and made it one of the oldest family-owned businesses in Columbia, S.C.“Her dedication to both her business and her family have led to her constant success,” he said.