I remember reading about Ruby Chow in several biographies of Bruce Lee, but I didn't realize what a community figure she really was. Check out this:
She was the first Asian American on the King County Council, elected in 1973 and served three terms before retiring in 1985, and the first woman elected president of a local chapter of the Chong Wa Benevolent Association, an international organization that advocates for Chinese immigrants.
The restaurant evolved into a hangout for CEOs, politicians and journalists. Through the restaurant, Mrs. Chow played ambassador, demystifying the Chinese community and making the culture more widely accepted in predominantly white Seattle.
"People either loved her or they didn't," said Mona Locke, who met Mrs. Chow soon after husband Gary announced his candidacy for governor. "But regardless, they respected her because they understood that she was led by her heart, compassion and conviction."
I also think she was right to fight against calling Chinatown the "International District." It's not "international;" it's Chinatown. Let's call it what it is.
We have so many heroes out there whose accomplishments are not celebrated to the extent that they should be. Ruby Chow was a trailblazer.
(Picture of Ruby Chow from the Seattle Times.)