Oral History Archive - Subjects
Albany (OR), Barnard College, Chiang Kai-shek, Fujian, Japanese Invasion, New York City, Oregon, Oregon House of Representatives, school board, Shanghai
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2019.038.001 The Family Journey of Mae Yih

Mae Yih, MOCA 2019 Legacy Awards Honoree, is an internationally esteemed and admired legislator who made history 43 years ago when she won a seat in the Oregon House of Representatives as the first Chinese American elected to a state legislature anywhere in the United States. As a revered public official, Ms. Yih served 26 years in the legislature after she had served on the board of two local schools for 13 years, a total of 39 years of outstanding public services. Her many accomplishments in the State of Oregon include introducing and helping to pass legislation that created a sister-state relationship between Oregon and Fujian province in China. She has made a significant impact in the development of U.S.-China relations for more than three decades. Her book, titled East Meets West: A Bridge to Understanding, Friendship, Trust, Peace, and Prosperity Between My Mother and Adopted Countries, shares her experiences and powerful lessons that she learned from life in China, America, and public services. Through her public services path until today, Mae Yih has always followed the words of Millicent Carey McIntosh, a former president of Barnard College: “use your education and be involved in the decision-making process for the benefit of your community.”





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