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Office of the Vice President

For Immediate Release February 5, 2000


My warmest greetings to everyone around the nation celebrating the Lunar New Year. This year's celebration is special indeed as we welcome in the Year of the Dragon - a very auspicious year that I hope will bring good fortune and happiness to all.

As we commence with this celebration of community festivals, dances, parades, and fireworks, it gives us the opportunity to reflect upon the tremendous ways Asian Americans have influenced our nation - not only through their rich heritage and culture which has become a part of our daily lives, but also their contributions in building a better and stronger America.

Asian Americans have helped to forge America's success in so many of our endeavors. We thrive on the diversity of this dynamic community and celebrate this New Year with families who have been here for over a century to those who may be experiencing America's Lunar New Year celebration for the first time.

Asian Americans must continue to be afforded every opportunity to be active participants in our society, this is why I am so pleased that our Administration issued the first Executive Order in the history of this nation dedicated to Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. The White House initiative established under this Executive Order will examine the needs of the specific sub-populations within this diverse community, and find ways that the federal government can improve the overall quality of life of Asian Americans and Pacific Islander.

Again, Tipper and I extend our very best wishes for a memorable Lunar New Year celebration and a healthy and prosperous Year of the Dragon.