Tag: asian american

The Long Blue Line: Florence Finch—Asian-American SPAR and FRC namesake dons uniform 75 years ago!

Florence Smith Finch supplied food and medicine to American POWs in the Philippines then became a Coast Guard SPAR late in World War II. (Coast Guard Collection)

Florence Finch Smith was the first Asian-American woman to don a Coast Guard uniform. In 1995, the Coast Guard honored Finch’s service by naming the administration building for her at Coast Guard Base Honolulu. She passed away in 2016 at the age of 101. Of her wartime activities, she stated “I feel very humble because my activities in the war effort were trivial compared with those of people who gave their lives for their country.”

Can’t be what you can’t see

Lt. Christine Igisomar takes pride in her Saipan heritage and heavily promotes diversity and equality within the workforce at Coast Guard Sector Los Angeles-Long Beach in California. Igisomar was awarded the Federal Asian Pacific American Council Military Meritorious Service Award for her significant contributions toward the advancement of Asian Pacific Americans and for promoting diversity and equal employment opportunity in the federal workforce.

The Long Blue Line: Capt. Kwang-Ping Hsu

U.S. Coast Guard Capt. Kwang-Ping Hsu experienced his own version of the “American Dream” and served as a true role model for members of the Coast Guard’s long blue line. Hsu and his family fled China during WWII and adopted his new country with honor and dignity becoming the first foreign-born cadet at the Coast Guard Academy and serving the country for more than 30 years.

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month: Petty Officer 3rd Class Carl Blas

Serving as a yeoman, the Coast Guard’s name for an administrative specialist, Blas is a critical behind-the-scenes component to keeping his Coast Guard shipmates always ready. Blas works in the air station’s servicing personnel office, where yeomen administratively take care of the air station’s 254 crewmembers, focusing heavily on customer service.