Skip to comments.Vietnamese American is a political pace-setter
Posted on 03/15/2004 3:43:24 PM PST by Cultural JihadEdited on 04/12/2004 6:07:09 PM PDT by Jim Robinson. [history]
WESTMINSTER - Van Tran couldn't cross the street to his office without a woman stopping to thank him for helping her son. A man shouted his congratulations from his car window.
Shopkeepers also nodded in greeting as Tran wandered through a mall last week in Little Saigon, the largest Vietnamese settlement outside Vietnam.
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Attorney Van Thai Tran was elected to serve on the City Council in November, 2000. He is the second Vietnamese-American to be elected to public office in Orange County, and Garden Groves first. Van was appointed Mayor Pro Tempore in December 2001.
Van received his B.A. in Political Science from the University of California in Irvine, and both a Masters degree in Public Administration, and a doctorate degree in law from Hamline University in Minnesota.
In the 1990s, Van founded the Vietnamese-American Voters Coalition, a nonprofit organization that promotes voter education and awareness. Van also served as a liaison between Westminster police and angry protesters during the 1999 demonstrations in Little Saigon. In his 15 years of activism and community service, Van has received many awards for his civic and political achievements.
Other Community Service achievements include serving as a Garden Grove Planning Commissioner, serving as Vice Chairman of the Orange County Boy Scouts, El Capitan District, and serving as a member of the fundraising committee for the Garden Grove Community Foundation. Van is a member of the Asian-Pacific Congressional Advisory Board of U.S. Congressman Ed Royce, and he has served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Regional Center of Orange County (formerly Developmental Disability Center). He is also a former member of the Garden Grove Rotary Club.
Van has his own private law practice. He is also currently a contributing freelance editorial columnist for the Orange County Register and the English section of the Vietnamese newspaper, Nguoi Viet.
Van enjoys reading, playing tennis, and has a collection of Mont Blanc pens.
To best serve the residents of Garden Grove
by bringing all diverse groups together.
Orange County Boy Scouts, El Capitan District
Garden Grove Community Foundation
Asian-Pacific Congressional Advisory Board
B.A. in Political Science,
University of California, Irvine
Masters degree in Public Administration,
Hamline University, St. Paul, MN
Doctorate in Law, Hamline University
Garden Grove Resident:
Time in Office:
Elected to Council in 2000
City Hall Phone:
Updated March 2002
February 19, 1999
Web posted at: 9:37 p.m. EST (0237 GMT)
WESTMINSTER, California (CNN) -- Lingering passions from Vietnam's civil war are being rekindled on American soil, in a Vietnamese enclave near Los Angeles known as Little Saigon.
A judge first ordered Tran to remove the flag and picture, calling them a public nuisance, but eventually reversed the order, saying the First Amendment protected Tran's actions.
His court victory however, hasn't stopped the controversy, which has been kept alive by daily protests outside the store.
The last time Tran tried to enter his shop, he was assaulted and had to be hospitalized. Tired of the protests, the landlord of the shopping center ordered Tran to vacate the premises by the close of business Friday or face an eviction suit, claiming that Tran owes thousands of dollars in unpaid rent.
Tran, who disputes the contention that he owes back rent, has vowed to fight the eviction in court, and his attorneys allege that police aren't doing enough to protect Tran and control protesters. He is being represented by the American Civil Liberties Union.
"The Vietnamese community in this country must understand that freedom means we are all free to express our opinions," Tran said. "Most people in the Vietnamese community do not speak their mind because they are afraid that they will be attacked by other people in the community."
Correspondent Susan Reed and Reuters contributed to this report.
Yes, they do. I dated a Chinese girl for a couple of years though and quickly learned to tell the difference between the various Asian peoples! There is some co-mingling though -- the girl who cuts my hair grew up in Vietnam but is 3/4 Chinese and 1/4 Vietnamese. She confused me at first because she looks Chinese but has a Vietnamese name and speaks with a Vietnamese accent.
Everything I said about the Vietnamese applies to the Chinese as well. They're generally very moral, principled people who value God, family, education, and hard work. A Chinese friend bent my ear a while back because his "lazy" high school son only scored 1500 on the SAT. His harder-working daughter had scored 1540 several years before.