MayKao Hang


Paul Hillmer

Document Type

Oral History

Date of Interview



Dr. MayKao Hang is president and CEO of the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation. Born in war-torn Laos, Hang’s family escaped to Thailand and eventually settled in the Twin Cities in 1976, when only a small number of Hmong families had yet arrived. Dr. Hang reviews her life story, focusing on her family’s history and adjustment to life in Minnesota, her education, and memories of various issues in the Hmong community related to resettlement, including clan and gender issues, community leadership, generational conflict, and changing understandings and definitions of Hmong identity. The final portion of the interview covers her professional experiences and how her life has prepared her in many ways to be the head of one of Minnesota’s most respected non-profit organizations. Dr. Hang graduated from Como Park Senior High School, earned a bachelor’s degree from Brown University, an MA degree in Social Policy and Distributive Justice from the Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs, and a Doctorate in Public Administration from Hamline University, the final degree not quite completed when the interview took place.


Some rights reserved. Others may copy, distribute, display, or perform verbatim copies of this work with attribution to the author and original source information cited. No modification, remixing, or adaptation of this work may be created without the written permission of Dr. Paul Hillmer, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, Concordia University, St. Paul or the Concordia University Library and Archives.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License.

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Oral History Commons



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