I will fight to strengthen youth programs, reform our criminal justice system, and create pathways for offenders who want to reintegrate into society.
I will invest in out-of-school learning opportunities to help foster young professionals and better prepare them for life.
I will advocate for a more inclusive government where everyone can easily access their right to vote and participate in our democracy.
I will protect workers’ rights through paid sick leave, strengthen job training programs, and foster economic growth by supporting incubators and small businesses.
I was born in a refugee camp in Thailand. Before I was even a year old, my family immigrated to the United States in 1992. My family and I settled in the Minneapolis Hollman public housing projects until it was demolished -- displacing many low-income families, including mine. We eventually moved to the Harrison neighborhood where I grew up and this past November purchased our first home in the Lind-Bohanon neighborhood through the Community Land Trust program. In a city where half of its residents are renters and in a district where many rely on public assistance, I know first-hand the issues and will bring this experience to the legislature to ensure as a state we are truly invested in our diverse communities. It is with this life experience that inspires me to be in public service. I want to play a role in ensuring that one day, many more first generation Americans get a chance to realize the American dream of sending their kid to college or buying their first home.
My passion started early on as a Carleton College student when I had the opportunity to work with Congressman Keith Ellison and his office on housing issues. I worked directly with homeowners facing foreclosures or struggling with homelessness by assisting them with loan modifications, and finding safe, affordable housing. After receiving my liberal arts degree, I worked at the Minnesota House of Representatives with DFL legislators to fight for all Minnesotans. As a legislative staff, I organized the Hmong and Lao community with Representative John Lesch to secure funds for the Hmong-Lao memorial recognizing our community's military service during the Vietnam War. Many Americans still do not know the sheer amount of sacrifice that the Hmong community made alongside our American soldiers in the Laotian theater of war as part of the Vietnam War. I also had the privilege to serve with Representative Dan Schoen to secure funds for our healthcare providers, invest in education, including all-day kindergarten. In addition, we helped pass the APRN legislation to make healthcare more accessible for underrepresented communities, and enact Steve's Law, bringing law enforcement and the community together to provide immunity to those who call 911 in good faith. Furthermore, I supported Representative Carly Melin's legislative policy, the Women's Economic Security Act to promote equal pay for equal work, strengthen workplace protections for women -- including pregnant women and new mothers -- and help women learn skills in high-wage jobs where women are underrepresented.
I have strong experience working on various legislation, policies and in government or government related environments. I have stood with coalitions, nonprofits, public officials, but most importantly, have made many genuine connections with my neighbors. I am deeply passionate about addressing the decades long problems that continue to plague our communities and am committed to solving them. And as a lifelong resident of North Minneapolis, my neighbors and I have lived through many shared experiences and I believe I am the best candidate to represent our district. You can see from my deep background in community that I have always been an advocate for others. I will proudly bring that experience and spirit to serve all Minnesotans in the capacity of State Representative.