Hollywood trailblazer Anna May Wong to become 1st Asian American on US currency

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Wednesday, October 19, 2022
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Hollywood trailblazer Anna May Wong will be the first Asian American to be featured on some U.S. quarters.

WASHINGTON -- Hollywood trailblazer Anna May Wong will be the first Asian American to be featured on some U.S. quarters.

The U.S. Mint will begin shipping the fifth coin in the American Women Quarters Program on Monday, October 24.

The coin will feature Wong, who rose to fame and became the first Chinese American film star in Hollywood.

This undated image shows the the fifth coin in the American Women Quarters (AWQ) Program. These circulating quarters honor Asian American actress Anna May Wong.
This undated image shows the the fifth coin in the American Women Quarters (AWQ) Program. These circulating quarters honor Asian American actress Anna May Wong.
The United States Mint

"The fifth coin in our American Women Quarters Program honors Anna May Wong, a courageous advocate who championed for increased representation and more multi-dimensional roles for Asian American actors," Mint Director Ventris C. Gibson said.

Wong's career spanned motion pictures, television and theatre, leaving a lasting legacy for Asian American women in the entertainment industry.

She appeared in over 60 movies, which included silent films and also appeared in theatre productions on the New York and London stages.

Gibson said the quarter is designed to reflect the depth of accomplishments by Wong, who overcame many challenges and obstacles during her lifetime.

Wong is one of five women to be featured on quarters as part of a four-year program featuring coins with reverse (tails) designs of women who have made their mark in American history.

The other women include Dr. Sally Ride, the first American woman to soar into space; award-winning writer and civil rights activist Maya Angelou; Wilma Mankiller, the first woman elected principal chief of the Cherokee Nation and an activist for Native American and women's rights; and Nina Otero-Warren, a leader in New Mexico's suffrage movement and the first female superintendent of Santa Fe public schools.