Republican Young Kim won her House race against incumbent Democratic Rep. Gil Cisneros in a Southern California district on Friday. With Kim joining Congress, the number of Korean Americans who joined the House has increased to four. According to The Associated Press on Friday, Kim earned 50.6 percent of the vote to beat Cisneros by about 4,000 votes in California’s 39th Congressional District.
Born in Incheon, South Korea in 1962, Kim moved to the U.S. territory of Guam in 1975 with her family, and graduated from high school in Hawaii. She studied business administration at University of Southern California, and made her fortune through apparel business. She worked as an aide to veteran Republican politician Ed Royce, who served as the chair of the House Foreign Relations Committee, for 21 years before serving as a member of the California State House of Representatives from 2014 to 2016.
“America is a country where a girl who emigrated from South Korea can work at Congress as citizens’ representative. I will exert effort to keep that promise,” the Congresswoman-Elect tweeted right after confirming her election.
With Kim’s election, the number of Korean Americans in the House has increased from one to four. As a result, 1.8 million Korean Americans are expected to have more influence.