In the spirit of honoring and gaining valuable insights from individuals with Asian, Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander ancestry, we at Galloway continue our celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month. We invited our team member Eric Tange to share his story as part of this commemoration.
Influenced by his civil engineer father and a love for solving problems, Eric knew he wanted to pursue a science-based technical career. He has been part of Galloway’s development services team for over six years and is currently a development services manager. He enjoys accomplishing a common goal through team collaboration that could not be performed otherwise.
How has your Asian heritage shaped who you are today?
My family chose to come to America to become American. I take pride in that while also holding onto some cultural norms and tendencies that I find a lot of value in that may not exist in the typical American culture.
Does your family have any traditions that are especially important to you?
As a fourth-generation Japanese American, also known as Yonsei, I am not making traditional foods regularly, so New Year’s is essential to us. We get together with family and make traditional foods such as inari, maki sushi, katsu, and mochi.
Do you have any Asian-American persons who inspire you?
Everyone who came before paved the way for my future and continues to open doors and paths for others.
What does Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage Month mean to you?
The month is a reminder to reflect on everyone who sacrificed for the following generations for a better opportunity. Many Chinese came before us and did heavy labor building the railroads. My ancestors were farmers before my parents moved away from the farm. It was not always easy for Japanese Americans or Asians, in general, to fit in culturally and be accepted. My grandparents kept quiet with their heads down after WWII and being released from the internment camps, which couldn’t have been easy to do. Many people didn’t particularly like or trust the Japanese Americans at the time, regardless of their willingness to support the US. Following in my grandparent’s footsteps, my parents continued to sacrifice a lot so that I could live our version of the American Dream. Any hardship I have faced is honestly not worth mentioning in comparison.
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