Press Release posted 7/14/12 (Editor’s note – Rotary sent this to me several days ago, and I was late posting it. My apologies for the short notice to make your reservations by tomorrow) – This Tuesday, Australian author Ms. Carina Hoang will discuss her book entitled “Boat People: Personal Stories from the Vietnamese Exodus” which will be a very special presentation. It recently won the Independent International Award in New York. This is a dynamic speaker you will not want to miss. She is only in the US for ten days and has made time to speak at our club. Carina has spoken internationally to many groups and high schools. She will have her book available to purchase and sign and the cost is $40.00. Rotary meets at the Hart House at 222 W Sierra Madre Blvd at 7:00am for breakfast. Breakfast cost is $12.00, please rsvp to Dan Alle at firstname.lastname@example.org by Sunday, July 15, 2012 so they can work with the caterer and provide seating. Also feel free to bring your high school age children as I am sure they may appreciate this special talk.
BIOGRAPHY – Carina Oanh Hoang
In March 2011, Carina Hoang has been honoured as one of Western Australia’s most courageous and inspiring women.
As the world prepared to celebrate the Centenary of International Women’s Day, Carina was one of 100 women to be inducted into Western Australia’s inaugural Hall of Fame by His Excellency Dr Ken Michael AC, Governor of Western Australia.
At the tender age of 16, she demonstrated amazing courage by escaping war-torn Vietnam on a small wooden boat with her two younger siblings and 370 other people. Carina and her siblings endured violent storms, pirate raids and severely unsanitary conditions to make it to Indonesia, only to find themselves stranded on an uninhabited island for almost three months.
Eventually, those who survived were discovered and provided with the necessary materials to set up a refugee camp. After 10 months, Carina was finally able to begin the next phase of her life in the United States.
Over the next 20 years, Carina earned a Bachelor of Chemistry, Bachelor of Art with Honours in Gender and Cultural Studies, and Masters in Business Administration. She went on to hold management positions in the semi-conductor, biotechnology, and healthcare industries in the areas of marketing, human resources and administrative management.
She married and became a mother; five years ago she resettled in Perth with her husband and daughter, having made a pledge to raise awareness of ‘boat people’ and their stories.
In 2011, she released her first book, Boat People: Personal Stories from the Vietnamese Exodus 1975-1996 (www.carinahoang.com/book). ‘Boat People’ won Silver Medal for Australia & New Zealand Best Non-Fiction in New York in June 2012.
Carina was the recipient of the Volunteer of the Year in the 2011 Belmont Small Business Awards.
Carina was appointed as Special Representative for UNHCR-Australia in June 2012.
Carina is now pursuing a PhD at Murdoch University, which will see her produce an oral history on the Vietnam Exodus.