Jackie Bong-Wright is currently President & CEO of the Vietnamese-American Voters Association (VAVA), a non-profit organization providing civic, social, cultural, and health services to Vietnamese-Americans. She is also a reporter for the Asian Fortune newspaper, a correspondent for VNDC- Radio, and a producer for SBTN-DC Television program on “Women Issues” and “Congressional News.”
Ms. Bong-Wright spent the first twelve years of her professional life in the field of education teaching French history and literature to high school students, and French language to adults at the French Institute in Vietnam. Her second work experience was in management: until 1975, she was Director of Cultural Activities at Saigon’s Vietnamese American Association, where she organized workshops, lectures, concerts, conferences, art exhibits, and social activities.
In the U.S., she was trained as a counselor and did her internship at Northern Virginia Family Services in 1978, going then to work for the Fairfax County Department of Social Services as a case manager. A year later, she founded and became Executive Director of the Indochinese Refugee Social Services, a non-profit organization that resettled refugees from Cambodia and Laos, and boat people from Vietnam.
As President & CEO of the Vietnamese American Voters Association (VAVA) since 1999, Ms. Wright focuses her activities in registering Vietnamese Americans to vote. She has been organizing, in partnership with other APA (Asian Pacific Americans) associations, Candidates’ Forums for the past ten years, inviting candidates to discuss their platforms so ethnic groups learn whom to vote for. She was an Election Officer for Fairfax County in November 2003, and assisted ethnic voters to cast their ballots using new voting machines.
Ms. Wright provides counseling services to Vietnamese senior citizens who have been affected by the terrorist attack of September 11. She organizes cultural and recreational workshops for them at the Carver Senior Center in Arlington, the Winter Hill Community Center, the Falls City Senior Center, the Willston Recreation Center in Fairfax, and the James Lee Senior Center in Falls Church, Virginia. She was Vice-President of the Vietnamese Senior Citizens in 2002 and is on their Board of Advisors since 2003.
Since the 1990s to the present, she has devoted her career in the media (newspapers, radio, and television) and in advocating for victims of human trafficking
Jackie Bong-Wright holds a Bachelor of Arts from the Universities of Bordeaux (France) and Saigon, Vietnam, and a Master of Science in International Relations from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. She received a multitude of recognitions and honors, including the national award in 1981 from the U.S.-Asia Institute as one of ten outstanding Asian-Americans in the United States for her work in resettling boat people refugees. She received the Key to the City of Kingston, Jamaica, in 1995, for her volunteerism and social work. Her autobiography, Autumn Cloud, was published in 2001 by Capital Books, Inc. The paperback edition came out the following year. She was one of the 15 individuals named Washingtonian of the Year 2003 by the Washingtonian Magazine for her 27 years of community service and civic participation.