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Patsy T. Mink PAC – Giraffe Award | Community Spirit

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Patsy T. Mink PAC – Giraffe Award
Patsy T. Mink PAC – Giraffe Award

In 1964, Patsy T. Mink made history when she was elected to the United States House of Representatives, becoming the first woman of color elected to the national legislature and the first Asian-American congresswoman. She championed the rights of immigrants, minorities, women, and children, and worked to eradicate the kind of discrimination she had faced in her life.

Mrs. Mink faced her challenges and adversities with strength. She was a visionary leader in educational reform and is recognized as the major author and sponsor of Title IX, which was renamed by the U.S. Congress in her honor. This legislation brought academic and athletic gender equity to American educational institutions.

Last evening at the new Louis Pohl Gallery, the Patsy T. Mink Political Action Committee (PAC) held their 7th Annual Reception. It was a diverse gathering of many political and non-political people all joining forces in the name of Patsy T. Mink.  The 2011 Giraffe Award recipient was also awarded. This award is for individuals or organizations that are working hard to protect reproductive freedoms for all. In other words – they stick their neck out!

After welcome remarks, Congressman Mike Honda, of California’s 15th district was called to the microphone. Representative Honda, who himself has dedicated his life to public service and is lauded for his work on education, civil rights and national service, shared his heartfelt memories of Patsy T. Mink when they were working in Washington D.C.

Congressman Honda then announced the 2011 Giraffe Award. He joked about the length of the giraffe neck, “Did you know that the giraffe neck contains seven vertebrae? That is a long neck! Now that is really sticking your neck out there. This year’s honoree also did their fair share of sticking their neck out - Planned Parenthood of Hawaii.”

Ms. Andrea Anderson, CEO of Planned Parenthood Hawaii, graciously accepted the award and shared her gratitude for the support she has received from everyone in the room.

According to their website, “The Patsy T. Mink PAC is a grassroots political network dedicated to raising early money for progressive Pro-Choice Democratic Women candidates for state offices. The PAC is unique and has an ambitious goal. We want to develop, support and nurture women to be great candidates and we want to help them win. We believe that electing progressive Pro-choice Democratic women at the state level will prepare women to run for federal and national office. More often than not, men and women who run for higher office come from the ranks of state elected officials.”

It further highlights the need for women in elected to office, “Women elected to office bring a unique perspective and advocacy on behalf of women and families. Important issues and policies that affect women and families, such as education, economic and employment opportunities, reproductive choice, child care, health care, freedom from violence and personal safety, must be legislative priorities.”

For more information about the Patsy T. Mink PAC  www.patsytminkpac.org

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