Yen Chou

Yen Chou () is a former educator and community activist who ran for New York City Council in District 20 in 2009. She is a member of the Democratic Party who sought to fill the seat being vacated by the incumbent John Liu. She lost the election to Peter Koo on November 3.
By September 2009, Chou had accumulated about $320,000 in donations for her campaign. On September 15th, Yen won the Democratic Primary in a 5 way contentious race, securing a plurality of the votes and by November 2009 she was poised to run against Republican Candidate Peter Koo.
After winning the Democratic Primary, Chou received a number of high profile endorsements from Democratic Party leaders such as Congressman Joseph Crowley (D-Jackson Heights), Congressman Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) and Congressman Anthony Weiner (D-Forest Hills); Borough President Helen Marshall; State Senator Toby Stavisky (D-Whitestone); and several members of the Council and state Assembly. She also received endorsements from the City Comptroller Bill Thompson and Councilman Bill de Blasio. She also received the endorsement of Councilman and Comptroller candidate John Liu.
Born in Taiwan, Chou is the eldest of four children. She received a bachelor's degree in statistics from Fu-Jen Catholic University, where she also met her husband, Bo-Hsiang Chen. Chou and her husband moved to the United States when she was 20 years old. She then earned her Master's degrees in mathematics and computer science at St. John’s University. She has two children; the older child is a graduate of New York University Stern School of Business and the younger child is an undergraduate at Columbia University.
Involvement with Education
Yen began her lifetime commitment to education as a teacher at Mary Louis Academy, teaching young women mathematics and computer science. Afterwards she moved on to Queensborough Community College where she taught Business Mathematics and Statistics. In 1999 she was elected to serve as a school board member where she dealt with many local educational concerns. After the school boards were abolished, she moved on to serve on the Queens Community Education Council. To this day she continues to prioritize education as the foundation for solving many of society’s economic and social dilemmas.
Community service
In 2002, Yen started the Chinese American Parent-Student Council (CAPSC), a non-profit organization with the mission offering a channel for Asian Americans to be politically active and helping Asian-American immigrants assimilate into mainstream America through education and community programs. During her time with CAPSC, Yen Chou worked closely with organizations such as the UFT to sponsor for example the Education Conference for Chinese-Speaking Parents.
In 2003, Yen served with New York City District 23 Councilman David Weprin on behalf of the Asian-American community. As a special assistant she worked with David Weprin on a wide number of Queens-wide issues as well as making public appearances on his behalf. Soon afterward, her efforts in the Saul Weprin Democratic Club led to her election as District Leader at Large.
On August 18, Yen Shia Chou (Candidate (D-20)) launched as part of her multifaceted effort to collect money and supplies to help the victims of Typhoon Morakot. Typhoon Morakot struck the Asian island of Taiwan and Eastern China on Friday, killing over a hundred people and displacing millions. Morakot has been the worst typhoon to hit the region in 50 years.
Yen Chou, as the only candidate of Taiwanese descent, gave a press conference in conjunction with local civic leader Terrence Park during which she announced her website and invited the entire community to unite in the face of this unfortunate natural disaster. During the press conference she said:
“I have been touched by the warm hearts and generosity of our Flushing Community. Even though we are from different backgrounds, we are all quick to unite when we see our brothers and sisters suffering. As a leader in this community, I will not disappoint you and all the people who have lined up with me in our efforts to reach out to typhoon victims in Taiwan and Eastern China.” is hosted by the Chinese American Parent-Student Council (CAPSC). CAPSC is a non-profit organization founded by Yen Chou in 2001 to rally community members to build positive change.
Yen’s service as an educator and elected representative has earned her numerous awards and acknowledgments. She was honored with the Outstanding Community Service Award from the Hakka Association of New York in 2003, and United Federation of Teachers presented her with the John Dewey Award. She is also recognized as a Tandy Technology Scholar, and was a recipient of a Who’s Who Amongst America’s Teachers Award.
In 2004, Yen was named one of the year’s Outstanding 50 Asian Americans in Business, and received another Outstanding Community Service Award from the Saul Weprin Democratic Club. That same year, the New York City Council issued her a Proclamation.
In 2008, while serving in New York under the US Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency, Yen Chou was awarded the Presidential Volunteer Service Award. The International Leadership Foundation also gave her the Promoting Education Award in 2008.
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