Bangladeshi-American who worked $3.35/hr to learn English sworn-in as first immigrant in the Georgia Senate

Senator Sheikh Rahman of the Democratic Party came to the U.S. after being held a prisoner of war in the liberation war of Bangladesh in 1971

The last few months have seen more diverse faces in U.S. politics than ever before, and a Bangladeshi-American is making his mark.

On Monday, Senator Sheikh Rahman of the Democratic Party became the first Muslim — and the first immigrant — to be sworn into the Georgia Senate.

Senator Sheikh Rahman. Via Georgia Senate Press Office

“It is such an honor to serve the state of Georgia and specifically district five,” Sen. Rahman said. “I hope that by sharing my story of coming to America to work my first job as a dishwasher to now being a state senator, I can bring hope to the men and women of district five, the state of Georgia and our nation as a whole, that the American Dream is still alive.”

According to his bio, he was held a prisoner of war in the 1971 liberation war, and eventually arrived in the U.S. to attend community college. He says he worked $3.35/hour at a North Carolina restaurant to pay for his education and better his English.

He became a U.S. citizen in 1995 and completed his undergraduate degree at University of Georgia. We’re yet to catch up with him, but we’re giddy in every color possible in a Bengali film:

The Bangladeshi Identity Project

Stories and art on growing up and living Bangladeshi in the West.

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