Grace Kong is a 34 year old Cambodian American and lesbian currently living in the Bay Area. Grace is an organizer committed to social justice and community empowerment. As the Program Manager of YouthSource in Seattle, WA, she worked to create programs that focused on education, employment, and leadership development predominantly for low-income youth of color. She is part of the Asian Pacific Islander Community Leadership Foundation’s 2008 graduating class, and in 2010, she helped to organize the first ever national Queer Southeast Asian Conference.
In the stories she shares with API Equality – Northern California, Grace’s accomplishments and contributions exist deeply intertwined with her personal life. Her childhood experiences, cultural traditions, family, and romantic relationships inspire and shape her commitment to share all aspects of herself in support of her communities. Her activism in turn influences and guides her navigation of the different stages of coming to her lesbian identity. She walks through her process of discovering her father’s porn magazines, to childhood crushes, and then to college boyfriends. Finally, she arrives at the growing relationship she has with Khanie, and at the end of the interview, Grace asks Khanie to marry her!
We actually we went to a conference a few weeks after we became monogamous, it was the first ever national Southeast Asian Queer Conference, Queer Southeast Asian Conference (QSEA), and we helped organize it…
This is a relationship where I can feel fully myself and I’m like, oh this is what’s missing, what was missing in my past relationships. Oh, this is what it means to what it feels like to be actually in love.