Governor Nikki Haley’s Methodist and Sikh Weddings

Nikki Haley and Michael Haley’s Methodist Church Wedding

  • Nikki Haley and husband, Michael Haley’s, Methodist wedding ceremony was held on September 6, 1996, at Saint Andrew’s By-The-Sea in Hilton Head. Michael Haley’s parents live at Hilton Head.
  • At the wedding the Pastor read out the Declaration of Intent to Marry. Both Nikki and Michael vowed to live together in Holy marriage, to love, comfort, honor each other in sickness and health. This was followed by the exchange of wedding rings.
  • Prior to her wedding in 1996, Nikki Haley had converted from being a Sikh to a Methodist Christian.
  • This was the first marriage for both of them.

 

South Carolina Governor and Clemson Alumini, Nikki Haley, with husband, Michael, and kids Nalin and Rena.Nikki Haley's Family picture with husband, Michael Haley, Daughter Rena and son Nalin Haley.

(Please Click on Nikki Haley and Family’s picture to Enlarge)

 

Nikki Haley and Michael Haley’s Sikh Marriage

  • According to a New York Time article by Shaila Dewan anf Robbie Brown, Nikki Haley and husband Michael were married in two ceremonies. One wedding was as per Sikh wedding customs and the other as per Methodist church traditions.
  • Website Demotix.com has Nikki Haley’s wedding pictures where she is wearing a traditional Indian Sikh bridal trousseau and jewelry. Nikki is seen wearing bridal bangles (“Choora”) which is traditionally worn by North Indian brides for 40 days.

 
 


 
 

  • In these marriage pictures, Michael is seen wearing a Sikh turban. Both Nikki Randhawa Haley and Michael Haley have marriage garlands (called “Jaimala”/”Varmala”) around their necks.
  • In a typical Sikh wedding, the groom arrives with his “Baraat” (wedding procession) at either the “Gurudwara” (Sikh place of worship) or at the bride’s house. Next the “Milnee” ceremony is performed where the key relatives from both sides are introduced to each other. Next the “Anandkaraj” ceremony is conducted where the bride and groom and their parents are seated before the “Guru Granth Sahib” (Sikh Holy book) and devotional hymns are sung followed by a sermon by the priest on marriage. The next ceremony is “Laavan” where, to the accompaniment of prayers, the bride and groom walk 4 times around the “Guru Granth Sahib”. The bride and groom are now married.

 

How did Nikki and Michael Haley Fall in Love?

Nimrata Nikki Randhawa met his future husband, William Michael Haley, at the Clemson University campus. They were both undergraduates.

 
 


Nikki Haley’s Family, Parents, Siblings and Profile

Nikki Haley was born, Nimrata Nikki Randhawa, on January 20, 1972, in the South Carolina town of Bamberg.

 

Nikki Haley’s Parents

Nikki Haley’s Father

  • Dr Ajit Singh Randhawa is South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley’s father. In the late 1950’s, Ajit Randhawa was an assistant professor at Punjab Agriculture University in Ludhiana, India. He was offered a scholarship to the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada, to do his Ph.D; which he completed in 1969.
  • Ajit Randhawa migrated to USA in 1969 when he was offered the post of associate professor of biology at Voorhees College in Denmark, South Carolina. After 29 years of teaching at Voorhees College, Ajit Randhawa retired as Chairman of Division of Natural Sciences, Math and Computer Science.
  • In 1989 he was recognized as South Carolina Governor’s Distinguished Professor.
  • The Randhawas are from Pandori Ransingh village in Punjab, India.

 

Picture of Nikki Haley with her mother, Raj Randhawa and father, Dr Ajit Singh Randhawa.Nikki Haley with parents (Raj and Ajit Randhawa), brothers (Miti and Gogi Randhawa) and sister (Simran Singh).

(Please click on Nikki Haley’s parents picture to Enlarge)

 

Nikki Haley’s Mother

  • Mrs Raj Kaur Randhawa is Nikki Haley’s mother.
  • Raj Randhawa studied Law from University of Delhi.
  • To meet expenses when the family was in Canada, Raj Randhawa worked multiple jobs (post office, baby sitting, department store, typing).
  • In the US, Raj Randhawa continued her studies and earned a Masters in Education (M.Ed) degree.
  • Raj Randhawa taught social studies in public schools for 7 years.
  • Raj Randhawa and her husband started “Exotica International Gift Shop” in 1976, from their house in Bamberg. As the business grew, the Randhawas opened a store.

 
 

 
 


Governor Nikki Haley’s Husband and Kids

Nikki Haley’s Husband

  • William Michael Haley is Governor Nikki Randhawa Haley’s husband. He is referred to as the First Gentleman of South Carolina. He is referred to by his middle name, “Michael”, instead of his first name, “William”.
  • Michael Haley is a full-time federal technician in the South Carolina Army National Guard. He is also a Medical Service Corps officer in the Army National Guard. Michael joined the National Guard in 2006.
  • In January, 2013, Michael Haley started a one year tour of duty to Afghanistan. He was part of South Carolina Army National Guard’s 3/49 Agribusiness Development Team.
  • Michael Haley graduated with a B.S. in Business Administration from University of North Carolina.
  • Michael Haley has worked at the Randhawa’s apparel business, Exotica International. He later started his own finance company.

 

Michael Haley works for US National Guard. From Jan, 2013 he will spend 1 year stay in Afghanistan.Nikki Haley's husband, Michael Haley, fishing with his son, Nalin and daughter, Rena.

(Please click on Michael Haley’s picture to Enlarge)

 

Nikki Haley’s Children

  • Nikki Haley’s daughter, Rena (which means “Melody”), was born in 1998. Her son, Nalin (meaning “Lotus”), was born in 2002.
  • Both Rena and Nalin have been baptized in the Methodist Church.

 
 


Nikki Haley’s Siblings

Nikki Haley has an elder brother, Harmeet (“Mitti”) Randhawa Singh, an elder sister, Simran Singh and a younger brother, Charan (“Gogi”) Randhawa. Except for Mitti, the eldest sibling, the other three Randhawa siblings were born in Bamberg, South Carolina.

 

1] Nikki Haley’s Eldest Brother - Harmeet (“Mitti”) Randhawa Singh

  • Nikki Haley’s eldest brother Mitti Randhawa was born in 1964 in Amritsar. He worked for 20 years with the US Army. Mitti Randhawa joined the Chemical Corps of the US Army and retired as a Major of the National Guard Reserve.
  • When Iraq invaded Kuwait, Mitti was a Company Commander on the battle frontline during operation “Desert Storm”.
  • Post retirement, Mitti worked as a National Institutional Accounts Director for University Hospitals in USA.
  • Like his sister, Mitti Randhawa too follows Christianity. He is a Southern Baptist.

 

Simran Singh is Nikki Haley's sister. She is a spiritual teacher. She is also an author and radio host.Nikki Haley's sister, Simran Singh, is an author, radio host, speaker and publisher.

(Please Click on Simran Singh’s picture to Enlarge)

2] Nikki Haley’s Elder Sister – Simran Singh

  • Simran Preet Randhawa Singh is a graduate of Fashion Institute of Technology. She describes herself on her website as “a creative visionary, transformational catalyst, and humorist in the realms of metaphysics, spirituality, and motivation”. Simran lives in Charleston, South Carolina
  • Simran Singh is the publisher of “11:11 Magazine”. She is host of radio shows “11:11 Talk Radio” on VoiceAmerica 7th Wave and “On the Lighter Side” on World Puja Network.
  • Simran Singh is the author of the book “Conversations with the Universe: How the World Speaks to Us”. Her second book is titled, “Your Journey to Enlightenment: Twelve Guiding Principles to Connect with Love, Courage, and Commitment in the New Dawn”.

 

Viasava guitarist Gogi Randhawa is Nikki Haley's brother.Gogi Randhawa is Nikki Haley's brother. He is a musician (Viavasa), web developer and video producer.

(Please click on Gogi Randhawa’s picture to Enlarge)

3] Nikki Haley’s Youngest Brother – Charan “Gogi” Randhawa

  • Gogi” as Charan Randhawa is popularly known, is the youngest brother of South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley.
  • Gogi has degrees in Computer and Electrical Engineering.
  • Gogi Randhawa is also a musician. He plays guitar in the group “Viasava”. Previously he played guitar for the band “Dear Enemy”.
  • Gogi Randhawa is also a web developer who runs a successful web development company, MsndrstdDesigns.com. He is also into video production, video animation and commercial production and runs a company called “Primarily Blue”.
  • Gogi Randhawa married Amber in July 2010 in a traditional Sikh wedding. Amber and Gogi have two kids, a son and daughter.

 

Nikki Haley wore an Indian Chanya-Choli dress at brother, Gogi Randhawa's wedding.Nikki Haley at the Sikh Wedding of brother, Gogi Randhawa

(Please click on Gogi Randhawa Sikh Wedding pictures to Enlarge)

 
 


Nikki Haley’s Political and Business Career

Governor Nikki Haley’s Political Career

  • On November 2, 2010, Nikki Randhawa Haley was elected the 116th Governor of South Carolina. She beat Democrat candidate, Vincent Sheheen by 51% votes to 47%.
  • Nikki Haley is the First Woman Governor of South Carolina.
  • Nikki Haley is the First non-white, minority Governor of South Carolina.
  • Nikki Haley was the youngest Governor of a state in USA in 2010-2011.
  • Nikki Haley is the First Governor of South Carolina who is of Indian (Asian) origin. She is only the second Indian-American Governor in USA after Bobby Jindal of Louisiana.
  • According to Nikki Haley, she was inspired to run for office by Hillary Clinton. In 2003, Nikki heard a speech by Hillary Clinton at Birmingham University, where she advised women to run for public office.
  • Nikki Haley is a member of the Tea Party movement. Her political philosophy is fiscal conservatism – fewer taxes, fewer regulations and fewer unions.
  • In the run up to the selection of the Republican Party’s Governor Nomination for 2010, Nikkii Haley was trailing her 3 rivals. She got a major boost when Sarah Palin supported her candidacy.
  • From 2004, Nikki Haley represented Lexington County (87th district) in the South Carolina House of Representatives. In the Republican primary in 2004, Nikki stood against Larry Koon, who, with 29 years in the legislature, was the longest serving member in the South Carolina House of Representatives. With the Democrat party deciding not to field a candidate, Nikki Haley was elected unopposed for the first time to the South Carolina House of Representatives. Since then she has represented Lexington County in 2006 and 2008.

 

Nikki Haley’s Accounting, Business Career and Experience

  • Nikki Haley received a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Clemson University in South Carolina.
  • After graduation, Nikki worked as Accounting Supervisor for the Charlotte based FCR Inc, a waste management and recycling company.
  • In 1994, Nikki joined the family firm of Exotica International as CFO, where she helped it grow into a multi-million dollar firm. Exotica International sells jewelry, suits, gowns, etc. This was her second stint with the family business. At age 13, she started working at Exotica.
  • Nikki Haley’s memoir, titled ““Can’t Is Not an Option”, was published in 2012.

 

Awards and Recognition for Nikki Haley

Among the many awards conferred on Nikki Haley, the key ones are:

  • India Abroad Person of the Year (2010)
  • Palmetto Leadership Award from the S.C. Policy Council (2006)
  • Strom Thurmond Excellence in Public Service (2006)

 
 


Nikki Haley’s Religion

  • Nikki Haley, her husband, Michael Haley and children, Rena and Nalin, attend Mt. Horeb United Methodist Church in Lexington.
  • Nimrata Nikki Randhawa grew up with the Sikh faith. In 1996, at the age of 24 and before her marriage to Michael Haley, she converted to Christianity. She was baptized at St. Andrew’s Church in Hilton Head and became a Methodist Christian.
  • In the late 1990’s and early 2000’s, Nikki seemed comfortable with both Methodist Christian and Sikh religions. But, towards the latter end of the 2000 decade, she referred to herself only as a Methodist Christian.
  • Governor Nikki Haley is on the board of Mt. Horeb United Methodist Church.

 

Nikki Haley’s Parents are Sikhs and She Grew Up a Sikh

  • Nikki Haley’s parents are Sikhs. Until the age of 24, Nikki Haley too was a follower of Sikhism.
  • Sikhism is a religion founded by Guru Nanak in the beginning of the 15th century in North India. Sikhism is the 5th largest organized religion in the world. The Guru Granth Sahib is the holy book of the Sikhs.
  • Key teachings and belief of Sikhism are that there is only One Supreme God, the cycle of reincarnation should be broken by joining ones soul with God, selfless service (”Seva”), equality for all humans irrespective of gender/race/caste, defend the rights of all, truth, justice, Karma, meditation, honest work (“Kirat Karna”), etc.
  • 5 cardinal vices/evil according to Sikhism are lust (“Kam”), anger (“Krodh”), ego (“Ahankar”), greed (“Lobh”), material attachment (“Moh”).
  • Sikhs who have been baptized in the “Amrit Sancar” Ceremony are called “Khalsa” (pure). After the ceremony, men take the last name “Singh” (meaning lion) and women take the last name “Kaur” (lioness). Baptized Sikhs should wear or carry 5 articles of faith – Kesh (hair, hence Sikh men wear a turban), Kangha (comb), Kara (metal bracelet), Kachha (undergarment) and Kirpan (dagger).

 
 


 

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