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Vietnamese American women lead historic race for Santa Clara County supervisor

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In the race for the District 2 Santa Clara County supervisor, two Vietnamese American women are leading the field for the open seat. If either win, they would be the first Vietnamese Americans to serve on the city's Board of Supervisors.

Historic race: Madison Nguyen and Betty Duong are marking a historic contest for the Vietnamese community as they vie for the supervisor seat in California. The race underscores the increasing influence of Vietnamese Americans in local politics, emphasizing the importance of diversity and inclusion in leadership.

Santa Clara County has the second largest Vietnamese community in the world, second to only Vietnam itself.

The votes: As of Tuesday, Nguyen is reportedly ahead with 31.4% of the vote, while Duong follows closely in second place with 28.8%. The early results also show Corina Herrera-Loera in third with 23.6%, followed by Nelson McElmurry with 10.6% and Jennifer Celaya with 5.4%. The voter turnout is approximately 17.8%, with expectations of reaching 35% to 45% in this primary election.

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About Nguyen: Nguyen, a former San Jose vice mayor and the first Vietnamese American member of the San Jose City Council, emphasizes accountability in her platform. Nguyen, who currently serves as the executive vice president of marketing company AsianNet Media, has also held executive positions at the nonprofit Hunger at Home and San Jose Chamber of Commerce.

“Regardless of the outcome, our team has worked really hard,” Nguyen told San José Spotlight. “Our platform around accountability really resonated with voters, and I hope that will show with the results.”

About Duong: Duong, who is Supervisor Cindy Chavez’s chief of staff, highlights her commitment to grassroots leadership and extensive community service. She played a key role in leading the Vietnamese American Service Center project and served as special counsel for the Vietnamese American Workers’ Rights Project at Legal Aid at Work. Duong also served as the public information officer for the Santa Clara County Emergency Operations Center during the COVID-19 pandemic and contributed to the establishment of the county's first language access services project.

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“It just shows the incredible impact you can make as a first-time candidate when you listen to the needs of the people,” Duong told San José Spotlight. “I consider tonight a victory.”

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