Asian Heritage Month: Profiling Sylvia Sun, Business Development Manager of our China Initiative

May 2018

In honour of Asian Heritage Month, we recently interviewed Sylvia Sun, Business Development Manager of our China Initiative. We asked Sylvia a series of questions about her background and community involvement. To learn more about local organizations she is involved with, the Canadian of Asian Heritage who inspires her, and the most important lesson she learned from her parents, read the full interview immediately below:

Q: What is your earliest memory of celebrating your Asian Heritage?

A: I was born in China and recently moved to Canada two years ago. I have witnessed many changes in Chinese society in the past few decades, from the huge economic development to the evolving cultural change. I spent about 40 years living in Asia and have traveled throughout China and many other Asian countries. My Asian Heritage has deeply influenced many aspects of my life.

Q: Are you involved in any local communities or organizations with ties to your Asian Heritage?

A: Over the last two years, I have spent a lot of time getting involved in the local community in Canada. My role at work requires me to network and connect with many business organizations. These organizations have strong ties with China and other parts of Asia. I often attend many events hosted by these organizations, including the Canada China Business Council (CCBC) and the Hong Kong-Canada Business Association (HKCBA), where I help promote the exchange between Canada and Asian countries.

Q: Can you name a Canadian of Asian Heritage who inspires you?

A: Margaret Jean Gee, the first woman of Chinese descent to be called to the Bar in British Columbia has inspired me. Ms. Gee was born in Vancouver and grew up in Vancouver’s Chinatown. She graduated from the University of British Columbia and opened her own law office on West Hastings Street in Vancouver. Ms. Gee was referred to as a “lady lawyer” and I believe that her experience inspired many women to pursue a career in the legal profession.

Q: What is the most important lesson you learned from your parents?

A: When I was a little girl, my parents always taught me the importance of being independent. They told me that I was responsible for making an effort to achieve the life I want to live and that you cannot depend on others to do this for you. Achievement in the areas of economic, social, career and personal independence had a powerful impact in shaping how you see yourself and how others perceive you. Growing up, I also really valued that my parents encouraged equal opportunities within our family.

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