First Asian American on US Currency

October 19, 2022
Anna May Wong quarter

This quarter is designed to reflect the breadth and depth of accomplishments by Anna May Wong, who overcame challenges and obstacles she faced during her lifetime.

U.S. Mint Director Ventris Gibson, who is responsible for overseeing the manufacturing and distribution of American coins. Hollywood’s first Chinese American actress, Anna May Wong, is featured on a new quarter.

Why It Matters: Anna May Wong (1905-1961) was the first Chinese American movie star to gain popularity in Hollywood. She appeared in more than 60 movies, though often experienced limitations in roles she was given due to discrimination. She is the first Asian American to be featured on U.S. currency and is the fifth woman in the American Women Quarters Program, which individually features five women per year on U.S. quarters through 2025.

  • George Washington, the first President of the U.S., is featured on the obverse (heads) side of the quarters to commemorate his 200th birthday. Anna May Wong and other women part of the program are individually featured on the reverse (tails) side of the quarters.

Anna May Wong will be 1st Asian American featured on U.S. currency (NBC News)

Hollywood trailblazer Anna May Wong to be first Asian American on US currency (The Hill)

Anna May Wong Quarter (United States Mint)

by Jenna Lee,