IPR is featuring some of the many AAPI pioneers who impacted the field of public relations in celebration of AAPI Heritage Month.

Gobind Behari Lal was born in Delhi, India, in 1889. After relocating to California in 1912, Lal earned a journalism degree from the University of California, Berkeley, where he developed a passion for science communication.

Lal began his career in 1925 as a correspondent for the San Francisco Examiner. His ability to explain complex scientific concepts to the general public led him to be appointed the science editor of the San Francisco Examiner.

In 1927, Lal began working for the Scripps Instutiton of Oceanography. His ability to blend storytelling with scientific accuracy helped advance the field of science journalism. In 1934, he helped form the National Association of Science Writers. Lal understood the value of scientific writing and informed the public about the dangers of centering scientific research around war efforts. 

Lal joined the United Press in 1937 as a science editor and received the Pulitzer Prize for his reporting on contemporary advancements in science. He was the first Indian-American to receive this award and remained a trusted leader in science communication over the next two decades. In addition, Lal was a civil rights advocate who fought against racial discrimination in the U.S. and for India’s independence. Lal’s efforts on behalf of India’s independence earned him the Padma Bushar honor in 1969 and the Tamra Patra in 1973. He died in 1982.


Heidy Modarelli handles Growth & Marketing for IPR. She has previously written for Entrepreneur, TechCrunch, The Next Web, and VentureBeat.
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