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Statement by U.S. Ambassador to Japan Rahm Emanuel on the Passing of Norman Y. Mineta
May 4, 2022

I was deeply saddened to learn of the death of Norm Mineta, one of the finest public servants of this or any generation.

Norm became the first Asian-American mayor of a major American city when he was elected mayor of San Jose, California in 1971. He then worked for the people of California for 10 terms as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives before serving as Secretary of Commerce under President Bill Clinton and Secretary of Transportation under President George W. Bush, where I had the honor of working with him.

Norm’s profound moral authority grew out of his experiences being interned with his family and other Japanese-Americans during World War II, and as America’s first Japanese-American Cabinet official, he was a tireless advocate for equality and dignity and a fierce opponent of bigotry and prejudice. He will be deeply missed.

I send my most sincere condolences to all of his family and friends.