WASHINGTON – Ambassador Katherine Tai released the following statement on the passing of Secretary Norman Y. Mineta.
“It is nearly impossible to capture the magnitude of Secretary Norman Mineta’s legacy and life. As the child of Japanese immigrants who was interned during World War II, Mineta went on to serve his country with distinction and constantly broke down barriers. He began his storied career as an Army intelligence officer, before getting elected to the San Jose City Council, as the mayor of San Jose, and to 10-terms in Congress where he co-founded the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus. He later became the first Asian American to serve in the President’s Cabinet after being confirmed as the Secretary of Commerce and later as Secretary of Transportation.
“Throughout my career, I have drawn inspiration from his legacy. Secretary Mineta's decency, empathy and commitment to human dignity was well known, and it left a lasting mark on our country -- especially during the Gulf War and in the aftermath of September 11th. Time and time again, he stood up for justice, accountability, and the rights of all people, and he touched the lives of countless Americans – including those like me who follow in his footsteps.
“America lost a hero with the passing of Norman Mineta. I offer my deepest condolences to his family and friends who were kind enough to share Secretary Mineta with a grateful nation.”