CAPAC Members Celebrate Korean American Day

Jan 14, 2019

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Members of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) released the following statements to celebrate Korean American Day, which commemorates the arrival of the first Korean immigrants to the United States on January 13, 1903:

Congresswoman Judy Chu (CA-27), CAPAC Chair:

“Since the arrival of the first Korean immigrants to the United States on January 13, 1903, Korean Americans have made tremendous contributions to our nation. As we observe Korean American Day, I am proud to join both the Korean American community in California and throughout the country in celebrating the rich cultural heritage and history of Korean Americans. This year’s Korean American Day is especially meaningful because it is the first time in nearly two decades that we have a Korean American, Andy Kim from New Jersey’s Third Congressional District, serving in the U.S. Congress.

“As Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, I also want to thank CAPAC member Jimmy Gomez from California, who represents the largest Korean American population in the United States, for introducing a congressional resolution to commemorate this important day. I join my CAPAC colleagues and the vibrant Korean American community in wishing a Happy Korean American Day to all!” 

Congresswoman Grace Meng (NY-06), CAPAC First Vice Chair:

“Today is Korean American Day, where we remember the arrival of the first Korean immigrants to the United States in 1903 and celebrate the unique contributions that arose from the growth of this vibrant community. Our nation has benefited from their countless hours of service and hard work to reach significant milestones in all sectors of our society. From science to the arts, to business and public service, Korean Americans have helped, and continue to help, ensure our country will grow and prosper. As we commemorate this important day and recognize the achievements of Korean Americans, I extend my appreciation and best wishes to the Korean American community in my district in Queens and all across our nation.”

Congressman Ted Lieu (CA-33), CAPAC Whip:

"I'm excited to join the many Korean-Americans in CA-33 and around the United States in celebrating Korean American Day. As we commemorate the arrival of the first Korean immigrants to the United States, we are reminded that the diversity of our country makes our nation stronger. Today we honor the invaluable contributions Korean-Americans have made and continue to make in our society."

Congressman Andy Kim (NJ-03), CAPAC Freshman Representative:

“More than 115 years after the first Korean immigrants arrived in America, it is the honor of my life to be just the second Korean-American to serve in the United States Congress.  Today, I join with more than 2 million Korean-Americans in reflecting on and thanking those that came before us and celebrating the innumerable contributions of Korean-Americans to our communities and our country.”

Senator Mazie K. Hirono (HI):

“On Korean American Day, we celebrate the contributions Korean Americans have made to our rich history and culture in Hawaii and across the country. From the first immigrants who arrived in Honolulu Harbor more than 100 years ago to those who enrich all aspects of American society today, we extend our appreciation to the Korean American community.”

Congressman Ed Case (HI-01):

“I proudly join my colleagues in celebrating Korean American Day and recognizing the accomplishments and contributions of generations of Korean Americans throughout our country. I do so not only as a member of the Executive Board of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, but on behalf of all of Hawai’i with the highest percentage of Korean Americans among us of any state. Since the first Korean immigrants arrived on our shores in 1903 to work on our sugar and pineapple plantations, this incredible community has contributed so much  to the economic, social and political advancement of Hawai’i while maintaining its rich cultural identity and traditions. Just some of those who have given so much are Pat Hamamoto, Superintendent of Hawaii’s Department of Education, Wendy Gramm, Chair of the U.S. Commodities Futures Trading Commission, and Ronald T.Y. Moon, Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice. And in my own family, the grandmother of my children emigrated from Korea to Hawaii after the War in search of a better life and has given so much not only to us but to her home. Today we again recognize not only this great community’s achievements but also the potential of what is still to come. Gamsahamnida!”

Congressman Gil Cisneros (CA-39): 

“I am proud to join the Korean American community in my district, state and across the nation in celebrating Korean American Day. Since the arrival of the first Korean immigrants to the United States, Korean Americans have found success as Olympians, businessowners, doctors, decorated servicemembers and so much more. Today is an opportunity to highlight their incredible contributions to our culture, economy, and society. I look forward to continuing to work closely alongside the Korean American community in California’s 39th District and wish everyone a happy Korean American Day.”

Congressman Jimmy Gomez (CA-34):

“Korean American Day is an opportunity for all of us to recognize the countless contributions the Korean American community has made to American life, from the private and public sectors to the world of art, education, and entrepreneurship. Since arriving in the United States in 1903 — starting off as farmworkers, wage laborers, and section hands — the story of Korean American immigrants and the subsequent success of their descendants is one that many other Americans can relate to. It’s my honor to represent Los Angeles’ Koreatown — home to the largest Korean American community in the country — in the United States Congress.”

Congressman Al Green (TX-09):

“On this important day, we recognize the invaluable contributions and rich heritage of the Korean-American community. I am proud to represent Korean Americans who call Houston home and to honor the legacy they continue to build. Korean American Day is a celebration of a people who are truly woven into the fabric of our great, diverse nation.”

Congressman Ro Khanna (CA-17):

“I am honored to commemorate Korean American Day with my colleagues. As the representative of the only Asian American majority congressional district in the continental US, I see how diversity empowers communities. Koreans first migrated to the US in 1903 and brought various social, economic and ethnic influences with them. Their journey is a part of a history of families, cultures, and nations, who all came to America in search of a better life.” 

Congressman Barbara Lee (CA-13):

“This Korean American Day, I’m proud to join all those in the East Bay and across the country in celebrating the Korean American community’s unique culture and heritage. Korean Americans have served our country in uniform and in elected office, and they’ve enriched our communities as teachers, diplomats, scientists, entrepreneurs, artists, activists and scholars. And in the 116th Congress, we welcomed our first Korean American Congressman in 20 years! As a member of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus and co-chair of the CAPAC Health Care Task Force, I wish everyone a happy Korean American Day.”

Congressman Bobby Scott (VA-03):

“Today, we celebrate the rich history and significant contributions Korean Americans have made to this great country. Starting in 1903, when the first Koreans came to America as laborers in Hawaii, to former Rep. Chang Joon ‘Jay’ Kim of California being the first Korean American elected to Congress in 1992, the positive influence of Korean Americans has been felt across our nation. At the start of this Congress, we welcomed the second Korean American, Rep. Andy Kim of New Jersey. Additionally, I have the tremendous honor to represent a growing Korean population within the 3rd congressional district of Virginia. I join my fellow Americans in celebrating Korean American Day.”

Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12):

“Today we recognize and celebrate the many contributions that Korean Americans have made to our country since the first families arrived on our shores over a century ago. I am proud to represent a large Korean American community and to call many of them my friends. This remarkable community is a vital part of what makes New York City and our country great and I am proud to join my colleagues in wishing the Korean American community a very happy Korean American Day.”

Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52): 

“For over a century, Korean Americans have served our great nation, built our communities, and added to our diversity. I’m honored to represent the 20,000 Korean Americans who call San Diego home and join them in celebrating Korean American Day. This year, we passed a resolution I cosponsored to honor Korean and Korean-American veterans who fought in the Vietnam War, but never received the recognition they’re due. As a Vietnam War Commemorative Partner, I’m grateful we took this step to fulfill Congress’ obligation to all our Vietnam veterans. I will continue working on behalf of our Korean American community—past, present, and future.”

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The Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) is comprised of Members of Congress of Asian and Pacific Islander descent and Members who have a strong dedication to promoting the well-being of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. Currently chaired by Congresswoman Judy Chu, CAPAC has been addressing the needs of the AAPI community in all areas of American life since it was founded in 1994.