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WHEREAS          Patsy Mink was the first Asian Pacific American woman to practice law in Hawaii, and the first Asian American woman to be elected to the Hawaii Territorial Legislature; and 

WHEREAS          In 1964 Patsy Mink became the first woman of color ever elected to the United States Congress, as an Asian Pacific American woman of Japanese American heritage from the then new State of Hawaii; and 

WHEREAS          In the early 1970’s, Patsy Mink played a key role in the enactment of Title IX of the Higher Education Act Amendments.  She introduced the first comprehensive Early Childhood Education Act and authored the Women’s Education Equity Act; and 

         She co-authored Title IX of the Education Act, which mandates gender equality in any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.  Title IX has led to the more women and girls being able to play sports and an increase in female students enrolling in graduate schools.  Title IX was renamed the "Patsy T. Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act” in October of 2002.  OCA strongly supports Title IX and stands against those who seek to dismantle the legislation; and 

WHEREAS          Patsy Mink served as Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus; and

WHEREAS          President Jimmy Carter appointed her assistant secretary of state for oceans, international, environmental and scientific affairs from 1977 to 1978.  Mink worked hard to reduce noisy helicopter flights over national parks.  While in Congress, Mink helped write environmental protection laws safeguarding land and water in communities affected by coal strip mining; and

WHEREAS          Patsy Mink won a seat on the Honolulu City Council in 1982 and was chairwoman from 1983-85; and

WHEREAS          In 1990, Patsy Mink won a special election to regain the 2nd Congressional District seat representing rural Oahu and the neighbor islands after U.S. Sen. Spark Matsunaga died and U.S. Rep. Daniel Akaka was appointed to his seat; and

          Patsy Mink authored a fair and compassionate bill that would have helped women provide for their families and enhance their futures through education.   

WHEREAS          Patsy Mink has always staunchly supported OCA’s efforts and activities.  Patsy Mink was honored by OCA with its Outstanding Citizen Achievement Award in 1999.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that OCA recognizes her as the first woman of color elected to Congress, the first Asian Pacific American woman to practice law in Hawaii, and the first Asian Pacific American elected to the Territorial House.  We would like to offer our condolences to Patsy’s husband, John, and her daughter, Wendy.   

FURTHER THAT IT BE RESOLVED that the Organization of Chinese Americans commends her for all her efforts to fight for issues that affect the rights and lives of Americans who are women, children, minorities, poor, and disfranchised. We will                preserve her legacy by committing ourselves to expand her work and philanthropy. 
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