A native of Hong Kong, Tang immigrated to Canada in 1969 and worked in the home construction sector for more than 22 years. He holds a masters degree in engineering from the University of British Columbia, and studied art through the Alberta College of Art. An engineer by profession, he is able to speak Cantonese and Mandarin fluently and was a board member of the Shaughnessy Heights Property Owners' Association for five years between 2001 and 2006. He was the chair of the Vancouver board of variance. In September 2009 he was accused by Ray Tomlin, a member of the Vancouver Board of Variance who subsequently fired after the making the allegation, of violating the Vancouver Charter by holding meetings in private.
Tang lives with his wife and their chocolate lab in the Quilchena neighbourhood of Vancouver, where he has resided for over 18 years.