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Immigrants Of The Week: Maya Soetoro-Ng, Masiela Lusha, and Thomas P. Campbell

by Greg Siskind


Indonesian-born Maya Soetoro-Ng may not have a familiar name. But you may have heard of her half-brother Barack Obama. Last night Ms. Soetoro-Ng introduced herself to a national television audience at the Democratic National Convention in Denver and talked about growing up with her older brother. Maya and Barack have the same mother. She was born in Indonesia, but at age two, her mother left her father and moved Barack and Maya back to Hawaii.

Maya went on to graduate from the University of Hawaii and is now a high school teacher in Honolulu as well as an instructor at the University of Hawaii. She took the summer off to campaign for her older brother, the culmination of which was her address to the DNC last night.

By the way, before I get a barrage of emails from people saying that Ms. Soetoro-Ng is not technically an immigrant, I understand that she is presumably a citizen at birth (just like Panama Canal Zone-born John McCain). because of her mother's citizenship status. Nevertheless, Ms. Soetora-Ng went through a migration experience that is worth noting. And she is married to Konrad Ng, a Chinese Canadian who also teaches at the University of Hawaii so she is part of an immigrant family.  Here's Ms. Soetoro-Ng describing her famous brother.