Lormong Lo in 1997
|Omaha City Council|
1994 – 2001
|Died||19 July 2011
|Alma mater||Creighton University
Ralston High School
|Religion||Evangelical Lutheran Church in America|
Lormong Lo (1959-2011) was the first Hmong American to be appointed to a city council in the U.S, in 1994, to manage the largest metropolitan city (Omaha—480,000 people) of a state like Nebraska. He was re-elected in June 1997 to a second full-term from 1997 until June 2001.
In June 1997, Lo is the first Hmong ever to become president of a city council in the U.S., Omaha City Council, who presided over the official meetings of the council. He is the first to ever hold the title of Acting Mayor of the City of Omaha starting in June 1997.
Lo was the first Hmong American to ever become elected President of the Asian Pacific American Municipal Officials (APAMO) by his APAMO colleagues, a constituency group of the National League of Cities, in Washington, D.C.. He was selected to be Vice-Chair of both the Economic Development Committee and the Program Committee of NLC. In these positions, he helped write municipal policies, e.g., housing and economic development policies for the 15,000 cities in the United States and was responsible for its conference planning. He often lobbied the U.S. Congress and White House officials on policies of interest to the cities, especially credit, economic, housing and immigration policies.
In 1998, he was appointed by Governor of Nebraska Ben Nelson and served as a member of the Nebraska Public Employee Retirement System, where he oversees the state's $5 billion retirement assets. He is the first Hmong American official to be welcome in Beijing by the Vice-Premier of China. In 1988-89, Councilman Lo made official visits to China, Korea, Japan, Thailand, and Taiwan—where he met with foreign ministers, dealing with trade issues and promotions and the Prime Minister of Thailand, where thanked the Thai people, Thai government and Thai monarchy for providing humanitarian support to the Hmong and Indochinese refugees in Thailand for a decade, until they are resettled into third countries, particularly the U.S., Canada, France and Australia.
Lo is one of the first Hmong born in Laos to go back to hold face to face meetings with the cabinet ministers of the Lao communist government concerning the alleged communist use of chemical warfare against the Hmong people and its continuing attacks on the Hmong villages in Northern Laos, particularly at Muang Mok. Through such direct talks, Laos has gradually opened the door to visitors who were natives of Laos.
He attended gatherings at the White House during the Ronald Reagan and George H. W. Bush administrations, while he discussed municipal policies with White House officials as leader of APAMO during the Bill Clinton administration.
On July 18, 2011, Lo was feeling sick and checked into a hospital near his home in Arkansas. He later returned home and died in his sleep the following day. He was 52 years old. He is survived by his wife and five children.
- Susan Szalewski (26 July 2011). "Former Councilman Lo dies". Omaha World-Herald. Retrieved 23 July 2012.
- George Green (17 June 2012). "29 people apply for Nebraska Secretary of State". Daily Nebraskan. Retrieved 23 July 2012.
- Miller, John "APAMO Members Greet Transportation Secretary Mineta." Nation's Cities Weekly, March 26, 2001. Retrieved January 29, 2010.