Chinatown Community Activist, Political Powerhouse, Rose Pak Dies

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San Francisco Supervisor Jane Kim (center) thanks Rose Pak (left) for supporting her run for California State Senate. (Photo: Stephanie Martin Taylor/KQED)

Rose Pak was called the "godmother of Chinatown," "the most powerful woman in San Francisco" and, perhaps most often, a "power broker." That last was a term she didn't like. "If I was white," she said, "they'd call me a civic leader." Pak's many friends and allies -- from San Francisco's political leaders to the low-income seniors, immigrants and other outsiders whose causes she championed -- are mourning her death this week. We'll discuss the controversial leader's life and legacy.


  • Scott Shafer, senior editor, KQED’s California Politics and Government desk
  • Willie Brown, former mayor, San Francisco; served for over 30 years in the CA legislature; columnist, San Francisco Chronicle
  • Gordon Chin, director, San Francisco's Chinatown Community Development Center; author, "Building Community, Chinatown Style"

Highlights from Rose Pak's 2013 Forum Interview

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