• Press Release

MA State Rep. Tram Nguyen Nominated by EMILYs List for 2021 Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star

April 19, 2021

For Immediate Release
April 19, 2021

Massachusetts State Representative Tram Nguyen Nominated by EMILYs List for 2021 Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star Award

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, EMILYs List, the nation’s largest resource for women in politics, announced that Massachusetts State Representative Tram Nguyen is a nominee for the eighth annual Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star Award.

“Tram Nguyen is a fearless advocate who has fought for marginalized communities since the beginning of her career,” said Emily Cain, executive director of EMILYs List. “As the first Vietnamese American woman to serve in the Massachusetts legislature, Tram not only made history in her election, but also flipped her seat by defeating an anti-choice Republican incumbent.” 

“After immigrating to the United States as a child and watching her parents work tirelessly to provide for their family, Tram understood what was necessary to succeed and set out to provide those same opportunities for all Massachusetts residents. This has included introducing legislation to advance racial and economic justice, protect workers, and increase access to education and health care. Tram continues to fight for working families during the COVID-19 pandemic by co-sponsoring bills to streamline the vaccination process and provide relief to small businesses. After an overwhelming win in 2020 for her second term, Tram has proven she is a force and the EMILYs List community is thrilled to nominate her for the 2021 Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star Award.” 

A political refugee from Vietnam, Tram Nguyen immigrated to the United States at five years old and made a home in Massachusetts. She received a bachelor of arts in sociology and American studies from Tufts University and a juris doctorate from Northeastern University School of Law before beginning her career as a legal services attorney fighting for vulnerable communities. Tram is deeply passionate about government transparency and accountability, as well as education and youth and senior support. Tram has helped pass legislation that protects workers, senior citizens, and other vulnerable populations. Tram is the first Vietnamese American woman to serve in the Massachusetts legislature where she represents the 18th Essex District.

Named in honor of the dedicated and courageous Gabrielle Giffords, the Rising Star Award celebrates an extraordinary woman serving in state or local office. The award honors a woman who demonstrates the sort of commitment to community, dedication to women and families, and determination and civility that have been the highlights of former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ career, in and out of office. Previous Rising Star Award recipients include former Georgia House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams in 2014, former Boston City Councilwoman Ayanna Pressley in 2015, former Colorado House Speaker Crisanta Duran in 2016, Philadelphia City Councilwoman Helen Gym in 2017, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx in 2018, California Assemblywoman Wendy Carrillo in 2019, and Ohio House Minority Leader Emilia Sykes in 2020. 

The Gabrielle Giffords Rising Star Award winner will be chosen with community input.

Tram Nguyen is nominated alongside:

  • Catalina Cruz,  New York State Assemblywoman 
  • Debra Lekanoff, Washington State Representative 
  • Lina Hidalgo, Harris County, Texas Judge 
  • Park Cannon, Georgia State Representative 
  • Jennifer O’Mara, Pennsylvania State Representative   

EMILYs List, the nation’s largest resource for women in politics, has raised over $700 million to elect Democratic pro-choice women candidates. With a grassroots community of over five million members, EMILY's List helps Democratic women win competitive campaigns – across the country and up and down the ballot – by recruiting and training candidates, supporting and helping build strong campaigns, researching the issues that impact women and families, running nearly $50 million in independent expenditures in the last cycle alone, and turning out women voters and voters of color to the polls. Since our founding in 1985, we have helped elect the country's first woman as vice president, 157 women to the House, 26 to the Senate, 16 governors, and more than 1,300 women to state and local office. More than 40 percent of the candidates EMILYs List has helped elect to Congress have been women of color. After the 2016 election, more than 60,000 women reached out to EMILY's List about running for office laying the groundwork for the next decade of candidates for local, state, and national offices. In our effort to elect more women in offices across the country, we have created our Run to Win program, expanded our training program, including a Training Center online, and trained thousands of women.