#iumienwomenmoversandshakers: Anastacy Pian

Updated: Mar 28, 2019

What do you think is the most significant barrier to female leadership? Female leadership succeeds when the community she leads is willing to accept, recognize, and honor women in leadership roles for not just their talent and skills, but also for their deepest faults. We currently celebrate women when they do well but criticize them heavily for the same faults other gender(s) might have; however minor or major. Until society allows women to breath with both vice and virtue, she will eventually run out of air. This issue is the most significant barrier to successful female leadership for women and her communities. What is one event that helped shape your life? Becoming a mother reminded me that there is still innocence left to salvage. What’s one of the toughest decisions you’ve had to make and how did it impact your life? Deciding whether to continue my career in policy and law, or completely change it up into education and academics this late in the game was extremely tough, but it has brought my daughters and I to an amazing and exciting life in a completely different and new country that is China. We have been here for a little over half a year now.

What is an accomplishment you are proud of?

An achievement I’m proud of is my recent journey to become literate in Hanzi (Chinese scripture). Learning how to read and write in characters has been key to researching the mysteries of where the Iu Mien American branch of Chinese-Yao came from in ancient China, and further differentiating their paths from other Yao groups.

Hanzi is essential because prior to the Vietnam War, all Iu Mien records and texts were written exclusively in characters. These documents range from religious texts, to songs, and daily journal keeping. They provide a wealth of information that is not easily discerned by the untrained eye. Iu Mien scholars literate in Hanzi who also possess an understanding of the Iu Mien language, culture, and traditions are very, very, few. I’m proud to be one.

If there was a young girl out there who wanted to do what you did, what would you tell her?

The biggest obstacles in life, no matter what your plan is, might come from the person looking back at you in the mirror everyday. Your belief in what *you* yourself can or cannot do will always influence how far you end up. To get through any obstacles of self-doubt, lack of confidence, or self-imposed limits, you must first learn to believe in your abilities. Invest in *you*. Seek self-improvement opportunities. Build a solid foundation of trust (in yourself) and afterward, use this trust to set high goals. Keyword: High! High goals. Surround yourself with supportive family and friends. The rest will surely fall into place. How can people get a hold of you? i.e., social media, phone number My email is: afpian@ucdavis.edu

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