Patsy Matsu Takemoto Mink (1927-2002)
Patsy Mink was the first woman of color elected to the U.S. House of Representatives and the
first Asian-American woman to serve in Congress. In addition to writing bills like Title IX, the
Early Childhood Education Act, and the Women’s Educational Equity Act, Mink was the first
Asian-American to run for U.S. President. She has a place in the National Women’s History
She was a third generation descendant of Japanese immigrants. When Hawaii became a state
in 1959, Mink immediately began campaigning to be elected as a congresswoman, although her
attempt was unsuccessful.
In 1964 Mink won a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, making her the first
Asian-American woman to serve in Congress. As a congresswoman, Mink fought for gender
and racial equality, affordable childcare, bilingual education, and became a supporter of Title IX.
She was one of the authors and sponsors of the Title IX law that stated that “No person in the
United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the
benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving
Federal financial assistance.”
Recognized for her work, Mink was asked by the Oregon Democrats to run for United States
President with the support of their party. Unfortunately, she only received 2 percent of the vote. .
In 1990, Mink was reelected to Congress and served six terms in the House of Representatives.
After her death, the Title IX law was renamed the Patsy T. Mink Equal Opportunity in Education
As with Jacinda, I chose a picture of Patsy smiling. She gladly chose the life of a public servant
and left a lasting legacy of advancement for under-represented people. I love the very 60’s look
of her suit and bouffant hairdo. Her determination to create legislation serving ALL of her
constituents speaks to her hing level of compassion.