Achievements recorded by Overseas Vietnamese in 2010
2010 witnessed comprehensive achievements of overseas Vietnamese, that won them many awards and recognitions from their peers and their adopted homes. The following are some examples of these outstanding persons.
On August 19th, 2010, Indian President Pratibha Patil presented Professor Ngo Bao Chau, a young Vietnamese mathematician, the 2010 Fields Medal for his proof of the Fundamental Lemma in the theory of automorphic forms, by introducing new algebro-geometric methods. Chau’s award is a great honour for Vietnam, making it the second nation in Asia after Japan to have citizen awarded the medal.
Restaurant owner Le Thanh Huong Trute, writer Kim Thuy, doctor Nguyen Thuy Quynh and translator Nguyen Thi Kim Huong have distinguished themselves in socio-culltural fields.
Le Thanh Huong Trute is the owner of Orchidea HUONG restaurant in Wernigerode City, in the Sachsen-Anhalt State of Germany. The City this month presented her a devotion award in recognition of her contributions to the development of the city itself and of the relationship between Germany and Vietnam in general, and between Vietnam and Sachsen-Anhalt State in particular.
Le Thanh Huong Trute is the only awardee who won the unanimous vote from all jury board members.
The City Mayor, Mr. Peter Gaffert, said he was proud to have Huong and other Vietnamese resident in his city.
Le Thanh Huong Trute is a Hanoian who left for Germany for university study in 1980. After graduation, she married a German and settled in the country since then. In early 2000, she opened the Orchidea HUONG restaurant to introduce genuine Vietnamese cuisine to the outside world.
Her restaurant at present has been a familiar address for not only local people, but also a number of international tourists. Huong’s restaurant has helped popularise the image and the cultural identity of Vietnam among Westerners.
Meanwhile, Vietnamese Canadian writer Kim Thuy was recognised worldwide thanks to her work, titled “Ru” (Lullaby). In November 2010, she was awarded The Governor General’s Literary Award, Canada’s most prestigious and time-honored literary award.
With a writing style full of femininity, warmth, and positive atmosphere, Kim Thuy knows how to influence her readers’ emotions, turning sad to happy and physical to spiritual.
Born in 1968 in Saigon (now Ho Chi Minh City), Kim Thuy and her family moved to Malaysia in 1978 and then settled in Quebec, Canada. She graduated from the Law Faculty at the University of Montreal in 1993. Before embarking on a professional writing career, Kim Thuy had worked as a waitress in a restaurant, a seamstress, an interpreter, a lawyer and a producer.
Although writing and thinking in French, Kim Thuy still has a good command of Vietnamese, the mother tongue of her childhood.
Another successful figure in culture is Doctor of Arts and pianist, Nguyen Thuy Quynh, who is one of the 19 young talented piano stars selected by Musical America Magazine.
Artist Nguyen Thuy Quynh was born in 1976 into a musical family in Hanoi. She had her first performance at the age of 9 and 4 years later she won a scholarship from Conservatory of Gnessin in Moscow, Russia. She and her family have lived in the USA since she was 15. She is now a lecturer at the Hunter College and International Keyboard Institute and Festival under the Mannes College of Music in New York.
Pianist Nguyen Thuy Quynh has given several performances in the USA, Germany, Hungary, Switzerland, Australia and France and won several prestigious awards, such as Artist International Presentation, Bellflower Orchestra, the Artists of Tomorrow Competition of the Brentwood-Westwood Symphony Orchestra and International Piano Concerto in San Francisco.
Besides, she has played solo with symphony orchestras of San Francisco, Westwood, Bellflower and Hanoi.
Nguyen Thi Kim Huong, a translator for the law bar in the Republic of Korea, is another case. She has won no awards but her valuable assistance and devetion have been very much praised. Korean press calls her a saviour of Vietnamese brides. She has given effective advices and consultancy to around 30,000 Vietnamese women living in RoK after marriage with Korean men.
Nguyen Thi Kim Huong settled in RoK 16 years ago as she got married to a Korean man. “I give advices to a dozen married Vietnamese women a week. I sometimes have talks with them via telephone, even at mid-night”, Huong confided. At first she found it hard to respond to all their requirements but then she realised that these Vietnamese women badly needed someone to share their problems and since then she has been trying hard to lend them a hand when necessary. Thanks to Huong’s assistance, the marriage of hundreds of Vietnamese-Korean couples have been saved.
2010 also witnessed progresses of overseas Vietnamese in the political arena in the USA.
Early this month, Vietnamese residents in the USA were excited at the news that councilwoman Madison Nguyễn was norminated as San Jose City’s Deputy Mayor as from January 2011.
The American press held that councilwoman Madison Nguyễn, of Vietnamese origin, is a rising star in the US political arena. Her strength and self-confidence proved that she was born for politics. Madison Nguyễn is the first American of Vietnamese origin to be listed in the ten-member council and to win an election in California as well.
Madison Nguyễn, was born in 1975 in Nha Trang, Khanh Hoa
Province with the name Nguyen Phuong Tu. She has been living in the USA since early the 1980s. Being the only girl in the eight-member family, Madison Nguyễn‘s political ability had been proven right from her childhood.
Another good news is that last month, Vietnamese American lawyer Cindy Truong, aged 35, became the new district judge for Oklahoma County. Cindy Truong’s victory is the most important event in the campaign named “Oklahoma’s successful story”.
Asked if Vietnamese-Americans can benefit from her election, Cindy Truong said that she believed she would be a good judge for the Vietnamese community in Oklahoma. Everything would be easier for them with someone at the court speaking Vietnamese, at least.
Another Vietnamese American involved in US politics is David Duong, a businessman. US President Barack Obama named him a member of the Vietnam Education Foundation (VEF), an independent organisation founded by the US Congress and supported by the US Government.
VEF’s mission is to promote the relationship between the USA and Vietnam through educational exchanges in science and technology.
Before establishing California Waste Solutions, David Duong worked as a business director for a solid-waste treatment and recycle firm in the USA. He is a member of the Sacramento Asia-Pacific Trade Society.
Among the successful overseas Vietnamese this year are many still very young.
K’Chin, a 21 year old and disadvantaged student of Vietnam has won the title Australia’s international student of the year. He was born in a remote mountainous village near Dalat, Lam Dong province. Before reach the one-year old age, K’Chin had a serious trauma and he could only move with one of his legs. Luckily, in 2002, the Australian volunteers had brought him to Queensland, Australia, where he underwent 16 consecutive surgeries. From an illiterate and handicapped boy, K’Chin has become a smart student. He now can walk by himself and is fluent in both Vietnamese and English.
|K'Chin and Natalie Tran
Natalie Tran, Youtube Autralia Queen, ranked 88th in the Top 100 most beautiful in the world in 2010, selected by the Independent Critic.
Natalie Tran, a 24 year old student of digital communication at the University of New South Wales has many times refused invitations to take part in television shows or interviews by famous newspapers.
Her individual website has had more than 150,000 members and her program posted on Youtube.com has attracted 64 million viewers.
The Vietnamese community in Germany this year was very proud of achievements by Nguyen Ngoc Kieu Khanh, the runner-up of Miss Vietnamese World and a representative of Vietnam in the Miss World 2010. She has helped promote a friendly and hospitable Vietnam to friends worldwide.
Born and raised in Germany, this Miss Europe 2009 still has Vietnamese nationality and is fluent in Vietnamese. She will study in the University of Economics in Rostock, in the Mecklenburg Vorpommern State in northeastern Germany.
Translated by Mai Huong