MacDill celebrates Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

  • Published
  • By 6th Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

The Department of Defense and Team MacDill pays tribute to the generations of Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) who have enriched our nation's history and who continue to be pivotal to our success as a nation as we move into the future.

AAPI Month is an observation that was established by Title 36, U.S. Code Section 102 in 1990. This observance is celebrated during the entire month of May.

The Federal Asian Pacific American Council chose this year’s theme, “Advancing Leaders Through Purpose-Driven Service.”

During AAPI month, we honor the perseverance of those who courageously reached for their hopes and dreams in a new land and we celebrate the important impact the AAPI community has made on our nation's progress.

AAPI encompass a diverse group of cultures, ethnicities, races and languages. They include all Americans who trace their ancestry back to the Asian continent and the many Pacific islands of Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia.

AAPI month dates back to the 95th Congress (1977-1978) when five joint resolutions were introduced proposing that a week in May be designated to commemorate AAPI accomplishments.

After a congressional bill passed in a 1978 joint resolution, President Jimmy Carter recognized the first 10 days of May as Asian-Pacific Heritage week.

In 1992, President George H.W. Bush extended the celebration to cover the entire month.

May was selected as the observance month to commemorate the arrival of the first Japanese immigrants to the United States on May 10, 1843. The date also marks the anniversary of the transcontinental railroad completion on May 10, 1869.

Between 1865-1869, twelve thousand Chinese immigrants constructed the western section of the transcontinental railroad—one of the greatest engineering feats in American history.

The rich AAPI heritage spans across the world and through the depths of America’s history.

Generation after generation, AAPI members have forged a proud legacy that reflects the spirit of our nation—a country that values the contributions of everyone who calls America “home.”

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