Organization Representing 700,000 California Workers – the Largest Union in the State – Says Kang Will “Be a Strong and Tireless Advocate” for Working Families
SACRAMENTO – Sukhee Kang, the Democratic candidate in the open 29th Senate District, today picked up the support of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) California State Council. SEIU California State Council represents more than 700,000 members in California, and is the largest and fastest-growing union in the United States, with more than two million members nationwide.
“Both in his private-sector career and as an elected official, Sukhee Kang has always gone out of his way to treat workers fairly and equitably,” said Arturo Perrilla, executive board member, SEIU-USWW, and janitorial industry vice president. “As a former dues-paying union member, and as an immigrant himself, he will be a strong and tireless advocate for the aspirations of working families in Senate District 29 and in the state of California. SEIU members in California are proud to endorse his candidacy.”
“I am very gratified that SEIU California has chosen to endorse my candidacy for the state Senate,” Kang said. “Many of its members, like me, are immigrants to this country, and they work tirelessly to enhance economic opportunities and the quality of life for all Californians. I look forward to joining SEIU in its fight on behalf of working people as a state senator.”
The endorsement of Kang by SEIU California adds to his growing list of organizational endorsements, including the California Federation of Teachers, the Orange County Employees Association and the Orange County Professional Firefighters Association. In addition, Kang won the endorsement of the California Democratic Party, earning the support of almost 90 percent of party delegates in SD 29.
Kang was a two-term city councilmember in Irvine, as well as a two-term mayor of the city, reelected overwhelmingly in 2010 with more than 64 percent of the vote. He and his wife Joanne, also a South Korean native who immigrated to the U.S. with him in 1977, have been residents of Orange County for 39 years and now live in Fullerton.
Kang announced his candidacy for the open 29th Senate District on April 22, the first Democrat to do so, and has since picked up dozens of endorsements from state and local officials and community leaders throughout Orange, Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties. The district is currently represented by former Senate Republican Leader Bob Huff, who cannot run again due to term limits.
Kang has been recognized numerous times for his outstanding public service and community leadership, including receiving the American Diabetes Association’s “Orange County Father of the Year Award” in 2012, the Carnegie Corporation’s “Pride of America” award in 2010, and the International Leadership Foundation’s “Public Servant of the Year” award in 2010. The Irvine Chamber of Commerce also recognized Kang in 2010 as “Business Leader of the Year.”
A veteran, Kang served in the South Korean Army, then graduated from the prestigious Korea University with a degree in agricultural economics, and in 2011 was awarded an honorary doctorate from Dongseo University in Busan, Korea. He also has served a special advisor to the chancellor of UC Irvine, and as an adjunct professor and Chancellor Fellow at Chapman University.
The Kang children, Alan, 35, and Angie, 33, attended public schools in Anaheim, where the Kang family lived for 10 years. Alan, a graduate of USC’s Marshall School of Business, is a manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers, Angie, a graduate of Berkeley Law School (Boalt Hall), is senior counsel at Hulu.
A full list of Sukhee Kang’s endorsements can be found here: