As a young girl, I dreamed of becoming a teacher or social worker, and both my wishes came true. For the first 12 years of my working life, I taught the French language and French civilization to children and adults in Saigon, Vietnam. Then, after coming to the U.S. in 1975 as a refugee and a widow with three young children, I worked for ten years in the field of social services, resettling and counseling refugees from Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Afghanistan.
My interests then expanded to public outreach through the media, and since 1999 I have been writing articles about the activities of the Asian community in the Washington area. In 2001, my autobiography Autumn Cloud was published. I have also been a radio reporter for two Vietnamese stations, and a producer on women’s issues for a Vietnamese television network based in California and Washington, D.C.
For the last ten years, I have been trying to empower the Asian community by registering them to vote. I have also raised public awareness of human trafficking by organizing conferences and lobbying the U.S. Congress to pass bills to abolish this modern-day slavery.
My fantasy is to transform myself into a multi-colored butterfly, flying here and there, sampling cultures all over the world, and bringing harmony wherever I go.
Like everyone else, I have had my set-backs. My motto is: “Success is not how high and fast you reach the top, but how high and fast you bounce back when you reach bottom.”