By Xinming Li, bostonese.com
Boston, June 7, 2016, — The Chinese American Citizen Alliance (CACA) Boston Lodge hosted its inaugural U.S. Senator George Frisbie Hoar Award Gala on June 5 at the Empire Garden Restaurant. The event honored Chinese American elected officials in the greater Boston area.
Michelle Wu was honored at the gala. (photos by Xinming Li).
Massachusetts Congresswoman Katherine Clark, New York Congresswoman Grace Meng, Maryland State Senator Susan Lee, Connecticut State Representative William Tong, former Mayor and current Bellevue, Washington City Council Conrad Lee, former Fremont, California Vice Mayor Suzanne Lee Chan, Illinois State Representative-Elect Theresa Mah, Los Angeles Community College District Trustee Mike Fong and CACA National President Ed Gor came to Boston Chinatown from all over the country. They helped hand out the awards at the gala.
Students from North Quincy High School Junior ROTC and Boston Latin School started the gala with flag ceremony and singing of National Anthem. Four people received US Senator George Frisbie Hoar Award for their inspiring public service to improve the Asian American community: Boston City Council President Michelle Wu, Cambridge City Councilor Leland Cheung, Quincy City Councilor Nina Liang and former Newton Alderwoman Greer Tan Swiston.
George Frisbie Hoar was a Massachusetts Congressman from 1869 to 1877 and later as US Senator from 1879 to 1904, George Frisbie Hoar voted against all the Chinese Exclusion laws. In fact he was the only United States Senator to vote against the 1902 Scott Act (extension of the Chinese Exclusion Act). The vote was 76 for and 1 against.
New York Congresswoman Grace Meng delivered the Keynote address at the Award Gala. She congratulated the four award winners and stressed the importance of building a pipeline of young Chinese Americans who are interested in public service. “This event is not only hosted to honor the outstanding individuals in our public political service, but also to engage more business leaders to inspire the next generation to be our future young leaders.”
The Chinese American Citizens Alliance is the second oldest civil rights organization in the United States. The first chapter was founded in San Francisco in 1895. CACA Boston was organized in 1927. CACA Boston Lodge is a non-profit and non-partisan organization. There are currently 18 CACA chapters across the country with over three thousand very active members. “We are starting new CACA chapters in New Jersey, Manhattan Chinatown and Flushing, Queens,” said Esther Lee, president of CACA Boston.
According to Esther Lee (middle in the picture above), the purpose of the gala was to inspire the next generation of young leaders by introducing them to Chinese-American elected officials, community representatives and business leaders. “It is a wonderful event to honor the exemplary models of civic and community involvement and political engagement,” she said. The following is more pictures from the award gala.