Rep. Keiko Orrall Offers Farewell Speech
STATE HOUSE, BOSTON, DEC. 4, 2018.....A group of departing state representatives bid farewell to their colleagues Tuesday, delivering speeches that touched on their accomplishments, fond memories, and, in some instances, critiques of the centralization of power in the House over the years.
One of those lawmakers represented a portion of the Southcoast.
Rep. Keiko Orrall, a Lakeville Republican who will be succeeded in the House by her husband, Norman, reflected on her unsuccessful run for treasurer, which she said made her the first Asian-American and first woman of color to run for statewide office in Massachusetts.
"We came up short, but history was made and hopefully there will be more to follow," she said, telling representatives she believed in the mantra "that people from immigrant, working-class backgrounds and especially women should run for office at every level of government."
Orrall said she had two uncles who fought in a Japanese-American battalion in World War II, serving the United States despite discrimination they faced and said her parents raised her with the "Aloha spirit" she hoped she brought to the House -- the belief that everyone deserves respect and should be valued, without judgment or expectation. Her final word in parting was simply, "Aloha."
Rep. Robert Koczera (D-New Bedford) did not take the opportunity Tuesday to address the House.