Why Donghui Is Running For City Council

DONGHUI grew up in a small village in China. Life in the village was not easy: the villagers planted wheat and corn as their source of food, children had to wear shoes handmade by their mothers with torn clothes, students climbed up to their roofs to read in the last twilight since there was no electricity. Donghui’s family was no different, they survived with a $20 annual income from his father as a middle school teacher. As a young child, Donghui realized that education was his ticket out of poverty.

Donghui studied hard and scored the highest score amongst tens of thousands of students. He attended one of the top universities in China, came to the United States and earned his PhD at Rice University, worked in the financial industry and was living his American Dream. But when City Hall announced a proposal to eliminate SHSAT in the summer of 2018, Donghui was outraged because he believed that the academic excellence of the NYC specialized high schools should be emulated, not eliminated. He started attending the rallies, and rose up quickly to a city wide parent leader leading the effort to fight against the proposal.

Donghui co-founded New York City Residents Alliance, a grassroots organization consisting of thousands of parents from all five boroughs. He mobilized his followers to protest against various issues including eliminating merit based SHSAT, opening of medical marijuana dispensaries, building jails and homeless shelters amist residential neighborhoods, and DOE’s top-down approach for the District 28’s Diversity Plan. The joint efforts kept SHSAT, blocked NYS legalization of marijuana in 2019, organized an anti-community-jail rally which effectively thwarted the jail plan’s progress and exposed DOE’s failure to truly engage all stakeholders during the diversity planning process. At the height of COVID pandemic, Donghui delivered over $200,000 of PPEs and food to our essential workers, organized food distributions to thousands of families in the neighborhoods, and brought coalition between the local police and residents and vagally patrolled on the streets during last summer.

Donghui is running for City Council because he believes a robust and excellent education which allows meritocracy is what we need if we want to ensure that OUR CHILDREN HAVE A PATH TO A BETTER LIFE. But this is only one example of how our city is failing us. Our streets are unsafe, our school system is broken, our citizens are under attack, our healthcare delivery system is being stretched thin, and our small businesses are closing at a record rate. He is running to be our City Councilmember because he can restore our neighborhoods with leadership unafraid to fight back.