Who is Mark Takano?
- The trip comes after tensions again heightened between the US and China
- Takano taught British literature in public schools for 23 years
- In 1990 he was elected to the Riverside Community College Board of Trustees
Mark Allan Takano is an American politician and academic who has been the United States representative for California's 41st congressional district since 2013. A member of the Democratic Party, Takano became the first openly gay person of Asian descent in Congress upon taking office.
On Monday, House of Representatives Gregory Meeks, Mark Takano, Suzan DelBene, Raja Krishnamoorthi and Andy Kim accompanied Speaker of the US House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi on a trip to Asia which will take her to Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Japan.
In the statement on Sunday, Pelosi's office said that the "trip will focus on mutual security, economic partnership and democratic governance in the Indo-Pacific region".
The commencement of the trip comes after tensions again heightened between the US and China over speculation that Pelosi could also make a stop in Taiwan.
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Who is Mark Takano?
Born in 1960 in Riverside, California Takano and his family were relocated and interned from California to a "War Relocation Camp" during World War II. He is Sansei, that is, the grandson of people born in Japan who immigrated to the United States.
He attended La Sierra High School in the Alvord Unified School District, where he graduated as class valedictorian. In high school, he also participated in the Junior State of America, a national student-run organisation centred around debate and civic engagement in young people, and was elected lieutenant governor of the Southern California State.
He graduated from Harvard University with an AB in government in 1983 and from the University of California, Riverside with an MFA in creative writing for the performing arts in 2010.
Takano taught British literature in public schools for 23 years. He was a member of the Republican Party through college, when he became a member of the Democratic Party. In 1990 he was elected to the Riverside Community College Board of Trustees. While on the board, he shepherded a measure that gave college employees domestic partner benefits.