Mrs. Florence Fang
Florence Fang immigrated to San Francisco in 1960 with her husband John T. C. Fang. She devoted her life to raising her three sons – James, Teddy and Douglas – and to contributing to her new home city of San Francisco, and her adopted country of the United States.
Mrs. Fang and her family opened a successful local printing business and became publishers of major newspapers in San Francisco including the Young China Daily News, AsianWeek, Mission Life, The Independent Newspaper Group, and the San Francisco Examiner. Mrs. Fang and her family also operated Chinatown’s largest restaurant and became prominent leaders in the community.
Among her many public service roles, Mrs. Fang has served on the National U.S. Small Business Commission, California Commission on the Status of Women, and the San Francisco Film Commission. As a result of her own life experiences, Ms. Fang has particularly focused her life on education and American and Chinese cultural exchange.
In 2006, Mrs. Fang was a major supporter in establishment of the East Asian Library at the University of California, Berkeley. In 2013, Mrs. Fang sponsored the first building for Peking University’s School of Chinese as a Second Language.
Mrs. Fang was a co-founder with the Ford Foundation of the 100,000 Strong Foundation in 2013, with a mission to send one hundred thousand American students to study in China. In September 2015, the program was expanded by US President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping, into the “Million Strong Initiative”, targeting millions of American high school students to learn the Chinese language within five years.
Mrs. Fang has also demonstrated her spirit of respect for history and her cherishing of peace, by leading the launch of the first museum exhibit outside of Asia dedicated to World War II’s Eastern theatre.
Mrs. Florence Fang is happy to serve as a bridge, connecting both sides of the Pacific – from her birthplace in China, to her home in the United States of America.
Former President George W. Bush wrote of Mrs. Fang: “America is a tale of immigrants who came to this land to build a nation and better their own lives. The Florence Fang story is yet another chapter on the American experience. Her pursuit and fulfillment of the American dream serves as a reminder that America is truly the land of opportunity.”
Peking University, Honorary trustee
Shanghai Jiaotong University, Honorary trustee
100,000 Strong Foundation, Founding Board of directors
First Overseas World War II Pacific War Memorial Hall, Co-founder and Honorary Curator
Yangtze River International Chamber of Commerce, Honorary President
Florence Fang Family Foundation, Chairman
(The Florence Fang Asian Community Garden was established on April 4, 2014 by the AsianWeek Foundation, Executive Director: Teddy Fang)
Florence Fang speaks at the garden groundbreaking on April 17, 2014.
Florence Fang arrived to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1960 where she raised her family and still lives. Mrs. Fang has been a successful businesswoman, philanthropist, political activist and community icon for many years. She is passionate about addressing local community needs and also fostering bi-lateral international relations between the United States and China.