Organizing For Hmong Americans Celebrates KaYing Yang’s Appointment To The President’s Advisory Commission On Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders
From Organizing For Hmong America
Organizing for Hmong America congratulates KaYing Yang on her appointment to the President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders. Yang is one of 23 commissioners from across the country who have been entrusted with the responsibility of ensuring federal initiatives are reflective of the local, regional and national needs of the diverse AAPI diaspora.
KaYing Yang joins the Commission after an extensive career in community organizing and advocacy for the Hmong and greater Southeast Asian American communities. Yang’s years of immigration and refugee policy advocacy have transformed the lives of Hmong and Southeast Asian refugees across the country-making it possible for thousands to resettle in the United States. Her leadership and passion will ensure that AAPIs and all communities of color, especially the most vulnerable, are given a voice at the highest levels of our federal government.
Bo Thao-Urabe, a commissioner under the Obama Administration said, “I’m thrilled for KaYing, and know that she will fight as she often does for communities who are all too often forgotten or invisible. She’s smart and passionate, and her years of experience means communities will benefit from her leadership on the Commission.”
Doua Thor, former executive director of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders said, “KaYing is an inspiration to us all. I have had the privilege of working with her for many years and she walks through the world with integrity and deep passion for refugee and immigrant communities. I have no doubt that she will bring the voices and issues of communities on the ground to the federal government and represent us well.”
Community leader Hue T. Pham said, “KaYing is the drum of our ONE Community for all and to take action to promote unity. She has been instrumental in making community voices the center of everyone thinking. We have deeply appreciated KaYing’s wisdom and equity-centered lens. For us, what has been so uniquely shaping is her resilience and determination for making a difference. How she has demonstrated them is what we need in any community leader, i.e. with compassion, understanding, and shared-concern.”
For more than three decades, KaYing has been a social justice advocate who has built and led community organizing, public policy engagement, and development efforts locally, nationally, and globally. She began her career as a community organizer and executive manager providing social services and advocacy for the protection of refugees and immigrants in Minnesota at the Women’s Association of Hmong and Lao. She then went on to defend and promote immigrant and human rights by serving in a number of organizations including the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center, the International Organization for Migration, the International Finance Corporation, and the Coalition of Asian American Leaders in Minnesota. All of her work comes from a deep experience having come to the United States as a Hmong refugee at the age of seven in 1976 where she experienced firsthand the struggles faced by communities experiencing generational trauma and poverty.