Christina Hwang – Nomination Speech

My name is Christina Hwang and I am Tony Hwang’s daughter.

After living in New York City working in finance for the past two years, I have embraced a firm optimist perspective; every week has the chance to be better than the last, rather than being bogged down in the negativity and the chaos of living in the city. The commotion, the stress, the anxiety that living in New York brings is enough to make someone go crazy with the disquiet of it all- instead, I’ve begun to consistently turn to positivity, I can only hope to experience the high expectations for the future.

Experiencing this political climate for the past two years, that has tested my optimism more than ever- I find myself challenged on a daily basis to grasp on to any glimpse of good news, happy stories or pleasant distractions. I dare to find inspirations, role models or people I aspire to be in the national news and social media of this time. Like I said- the optimism is definitely being tested.

But- when I think about the work my dad is doing every day throughout the state of Connecticut, I brighten up and smile because I know, through the rough and negative hurdles that he has to go through every day- he will always smile through it.  Mary Oliver has a quote that I love, and I have spent a long time thinking about in terms of my own life goals- she presents the open question, “What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” The importance of finding that one niche, that one place, that one sweet spot absorbs most of people’s entire existence. Unlike many people that might struggle spending their whole lives looking for what Mary Oliver is talking about, my dad has found it. Thank goodness the Fairfield school districts attempted to re-district me so many times in elementary school, otherwise my dad would have never have found an excuse to go down to that Board of Ed meeting and begin his political career.

I want to also say a belated Mother’s day to my mom and all the other moms out there who constantly support, nurture and bring out the best in the families that they support and hold together. I know that my dad wouldn’t have all the success, support and true impact that he has if he didn’t have such a special woman by his side. No matter how much slack I give him about quick runs to Shop Rite becoming 2 hour long grocery trips with countless conversations in between - I believe the support system that he has at home from my mom, brother and I is one of the things fueling his passion to continue to stay in politics.

If anyone watches my dad during session or at any event across his district, they can see the passion there- it lies in his tone, his intensity and his focus on getting the importance of his message across. My dad has proven that actions speak louder than words- especially in the realm of politics where talking is sometimes emphasized more than anything. Actions must continue in CT to make it better, and he is up for the undertaking.

His duty to civil service goes farther than just a 9-5 job, it goes farther than the hundreds of houses he visits door to door on any given weekend. Clearly, I can vouch that being a state senator goes far beyond a 40 hour work week- whether it be 1 am returns to Fairfield after session debating, 7 am parade float check ins, or running all around the state to attend the various organization meetings or Capitol updates and panels he facilitates. That is a real commitment to community.

His newly minted electric Chevy Bolt has its work cut out for it, trying to find working charger outlets across Connecticut- as it traverses to Eagle Scout inductions, new business openings, senior center get-togethers, or my personal favorite- the inaugural St. Baldricks fundraiser. It’s not very often you can see your family hairdresser shave your dad’s head on purpose, and all for a fantastic cause bringing attention to childhood cancer research. Thank goodness for iPhone videos and photos that let me feel like I was able to attend that one, it’s definitely going in the vault of pictures that our family will save for a while.

More than ever- this state needs true and honest partnerships that choose to take the risk and experience the challenges that come with working across the aisle with your peers to make substantial transformations to Connecticut. A bipartisan attitude that allows our state government officials to cross borders and work together to create productive change is a lot to wish for. But, I can promise you that my dad is up for the task and he has shown up time and time again to exceed our expectations and create a new definition and image of what it means to be a part of the state assembly. I can’t wait to walk beside him on this next campaign journey until November.

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