Honolulu, HI – Armenian Americans from the Aloha State welcomed this week Congresswoman Mazie Hirono’s cosponsorship of human rights legislation concerning the Armenian Genocide (H.Res.106). Congresswoman Hirono, who represents Hawaii’s second Congressional District, is the first immigrant woman of Asian ancestry to be elected to and to serve in the United States House of Representatives.
“Our community here in Hawaii and especially in the Congresswoman’s District appreciates her support for the Armenian Genocide resolution,” commented George Casen. He noted that the Armenian Community in Hawaii is composed of Armenians who have been in the United States for a long time, primarily second and third generation Armenian-Americans, highly assimilated within the local community. “We appreciate her leadership on this issue which is of utmost concern to us. Whether it is Armenian-Americans living on the Big Island, Maui, Kauai or in other parts of her Congressional District, we thank the Congresswoman for her support of Congressman Schiff’s Genocide Resolution,” Casen added.
Casen along with Michael Petrosian and ANC activists working with the ANCA-WR and national offices contacted Congresswoman Hirono’s local and Washington, D.C. staff regarding the resolution. This past April, Casen met with the Congresswoman to discuss the resolution and the Armenian Genocide.
Congresswoman Hirono won her seat in November of 2006 to fill the vacancy left by former Congressman Ed Case. She won the seat with 61% of the vote against Republican Bob Hogue.
Prior to being elected to Congress, Hirono served two 4-years terms as the State of Hawaii’s ninth elected Lieutenant Governor. She was also the Hawaii Democratic Party’s candidate for Governor in 2002, one of a handful of women in the United States to become their party’s nominee for Governor. She was born in Fukushima, Japan on Nov. 3, 1947 and became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1959, the year Hawaii became a state. Educated in public schools in Hawaii, Congresswoman Hirono graduated with honors from Kaimuki High School and Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She earned her law degree from Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C. Congresswoman Hirono is married to attorney Leighton K. Oshima.
The Armenian National Committee of America (ANCA) is the largest and most influential Armenian American grassroots political organization. Working in coordination with a network of offices, chapters, and supporters throughout the United States and affiliated organizations around the world, the ANCA actively advances the concerns of the Armenian American community on a broad range of issues.
Photo Caption: Congresswoman Mazie Hirono (D-HI-02)