FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Samantha Vang, Campaign Manager
Tou SaiKo Lee endorses Jay Xiong for House in 67B
Jay Xiong is proud to announce the endorsement of community organizer, neighborhood outreach and spoken word artist, Tou SaiKo Lee. Tou SaiKo and his late grandmother Youa Chang were known internationally as the duo “Fresh Traditions,” where they would perform as an intergenerational collaboration. Youa did the traditional Hmong art of kwv txhiaj (Hmong Poetry Chanting). Tou SaiKo received the Jerome Foundation Travel Study Grant in 2008 and is a 2009 Intermedia Arts VERVE Spoken Word grant recipient. In 2016, Tou SaiKo was awarded The Bush Fellowship, a prestigious leadership grant. Tou SaiKo is a graduate of Johnson High School on the East Side and grew up in the Payne Phalen Neighborhood.
The endorsement of Tou SaiKo Lee means a lot to the east side campaign of Jay Xiong, who has prided himself in civic engagement of youth and has always admired the grassroots leadership and approach of Tou SaiKo’s community work.
Of the endorsement, Jay Xiong had this to say: “When I think about innovation, resilience, and community, there is no greater champion in our community of Saint Paul than my friend, artist Tou SaiKo Lee. I am honored by the support of my good friend and longtime organizer. Tou has always been down for our neighborhoods and youth. I thank him for his support.”
“I fully support and endorse Jay Xiong for Minnesota State Representative for House 67B. I have always known Jay to be a tireless worker to create a better community for our neighborhoods, his spirited dedication for political engagement and how he has been committed to the East Side for many years. I admire his passion to help his family as it will expand to helping the Eastside. He has also been an advocate for immigrant and refugee rights as well as building towards more quality and diversity in education for our children. Many know of Jay as having significant years of experience in working on various campaigns. Now it’s his time to rise up and represent us. Keep striving,” Tou SaiKo Lee.
We are Doua Yang Xiong and Va Xiong, and we want to share with you a little bit about our son, Jay Xiong. As the oldest child in our family, he is a symbol of the hard work we strive to achieve as parents who are illiterate refugees and immigrants. When we arrived in America forty years ago, we came with the clothes on our back. In our stomachs were endless appetite for a greater future for our sons and daughters, and in our minds were visions of a brighter path to social and economic independence, something that we had never known before.
As Jay's mother, I am most proud to call him son, because he helped raise his younger siblings like his own children, being forced to grow up even faster himself as a mature person. I spent two decades working in an assembly plant so my children could reach for the stars. It was with the support of our own children that we were able to make it work and now I run my own small cleaning business.
As Jay's father, I could not be more proud to call him our oldest child. Never one to back down from hardship, challenges and opportunities for serving others, Jay has always led by example. When I came to this great country as a veteran, I had hard work and a strong will to provide for my family. We struggled, and lived in public house, getting by on public assistance while I worked as a janitor during the day at SEARS and at night for West Publishing. A few years ago, I suffered a stroke while on the job. It has been a difficult for us, but one thing that will never be taken away from me is the pride and affection I have for my children. Jay's hard work lives on in his drive to serve all of us.
As Jay's parents, we ask you to attend the Senate District 67 DFL Precinct Caucus on Tuesday, February 6, 2018, 7 PM at Harding High School. And we ask that you become a delegate for our son Jay Xiong to the Senate District 67 DFL Convention in March, in hopes that he can go on to become the DFL endorsed candidate and continue the good fight for all of us. Nothing makes us happier knowing that the young man who we raised wants to dedicate his service to friends and neighbors like you.
Va & Doua Yang Xiong
Whole Event Streamed Live (1 hr 46 min)
Full recorded Live Stream of Jay Xiong's Campaign Kickoff on January 13, from 10 am to 12 pm at the Carpenter's Local. Break down of Speakers and approximate time Markers:
*Sen. Mee Moua, Rep. Fue Lee, Rep. Ilhan Omar, Rep. Sheldon Johnson, Rep. Rena Moran, Rep. Tim Mahoney, Rep. Cy Thao, Councilman Dai Thao, Councilwoman Jane Prince, Commissioner Jim McDonough, SPPS Board of Director Marny Xiong, Community Leaders Paul Sawyer, Chai Lee, M Kathleen Murphy, Nicole Ly, Roy Magnuson, Samantha Vaj, Nasser Mussa, KaYing Thao Sppd, Amanda Rudi Rudolph, James Chang, Mustafa Jumale, Abdi Nour Barkat, Chong Lee, Patty Mac, Souvan Yang, Sarah Catherine Walker, MMaita Chondria, Nancy Haas, Nelsie Kalia Yang, Marcus Harcus, Boon Xiong, Tiphanie Ph Copeland, Outis Nemo, Terri Thao and many more.
A big shout out to Adam Duininck and Carpenters Local 322 for hosting our kickoff!
I have had the good fortune to work with Jay at the Legislature and in our neighborhood. Jay is a very hard worker, knowledgeable, caring, and compassionate. He is a strong advocate for progressive values. I look forward to his service as our State Representative.
Former St. Paul City Councilman, Veteran and Environmental Justice Activist
Nyob zoo xyoo tshiab! Happy New Year! As we begin a new year, I want to share an exciting new prospect in our community; my friend Jay Xiong who is running to represent the greater East Side of St. Paul in 67B!
As first generation Americans, Jay and I share the same value that education is the foundation to liberating families out of poverty and systemic oppression that affects a child's access to education success. His passion on education and racial justice is integral to my reason for supporting him. Jay is someone who cares about strengthening our education system, fostering young leaders, and is dedicated to closing the achievement gap and fight for racial justice. He is a grassroots leader with many years of organizing under his belt, and is experienced with the Minnesota state legislature through his time working with our state legislators, so I know he will get the job done.
I very much look forward to beginning 2018 with our neighborhood and community backing progressive leaders, like my friend Jay Xiong, who will fight for all families. Please join me in supporting Jay Xiong for MN state house 67B!
Dear Friends and Neighbors,
Once in a while, you come across someone who is passionate about the issues facing us and cares about what’s best for our community, and amazingly, wants to be our voice at the table. That someone is my dear friend Jay Xiong, a fellow East Sider from right here in Ward 7, who has thrown his hat into the ring for State House in 67B.
Today, I am very proud to announce my support for Jay Xiong, an effective advocate and longtime progressive activist.
Jay has been in the trenches for our community. He has organized the community, has helped people register to vote, he has led campaigns all over the Twin Cities, and he has direct work experience in the legislature. Jay is a true champion for all of us. Most importantly, with his background and skills, he will be ready to serve you on day one at the Capitol.
In 2018, I don't need to tell you how important it will be to elect leaders like Jay, who will fight for us at the local level and reverse the impact of regressive federal legislation. That's why I'm reaching out to let you know that I am supporting Jay Xiong to be our next state representative. Jay is a team player, a great listener and an advocate for all people. I am confident in his ability to be our voice at the legislature.
Please join me in supporting Jay Xiong,
Dear Friends, As we heard into the Holiday, I want to share with you great news to kick off 2018. I am proud to announce that I am supporting Jay Xiong for State House in 67B on the East Side of St. Paul. Jay has been a good friend and ardent advocate for all residents in our community. Whether that is with his community work organizing get out the vote for Asian Pacific Islanders or ensuring community engagement in our schools, Jay has cut his teeth from the grassroots. He has worked tirelessly for all of us, to ensure that we too, have input in the civic process. Jay has relevant work experience directly in the legislature, so he knows the process. I can think of no one more qualified to stand up for our East Siders than my friend Jay, who will continue to fight for you in the Minnesota House. As we give thanks this holiday season, I am grateful for the many young leaders we have had the privilege of fostering in our own neighborhoods. I support Jay Xiong, and I hope that you stand with me.