On March 5, 2011 the New York Times announced that they have found the Happiest Man in America.
The New York Times had asked Gallup to come up with a statistical composite for the happiest person in America, based on the characteristics that most closely correlated with happiness in 2010. Men, for example, tend to be happier than women, older people are happier than middle-aged people, and so on.
The answer from Gallup was: he’s a tall, Asian-American, observant Jew who is at least 65 and married, has children, lives in Hawaii, runs his own business and has a household income of more than $120,000 a year.
The New York Times called the three Oahu Jewish synagogues in search of a man that would meet these criteria. They found their man: Meet Alvin Kuo Wong. He is a 5-foot-10, 69-year-old, Chinese-American, Kosher-observing Jew, who’s married with children and lives in Honolulu. He runs his own health care management business and earns more than $120,000 a year.
Together with his wife, Trudy Schandler-Wong, they have been a host family for students at the East-West Center since 1976. Their work was recognized during the EWC/EWCA 50th Anniversary International Conference. Trudy was one of the 4 recipients of the EWCA Outstanding Volunteer award during the Conference. Trudy helped to develop the Friends of the East-West Center (FEWC) to be a bridge between the Center and the community. The FEWC sponsors and supports programs and activities for EWC students and the general public such as the China Seminar and ‘Ohana (Host Family) Program. Trudy’s leadership and support of the Friends is especially noteworthy for her outstanding work as a host family for hundreds of EWC students over the past four decades.
Thank you to Alvin and Trudy for their work as hosts for several of our international students and congratulations to Alvin on being the Happiest Man in America.