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Bergen Community Student Leading NAACP Region

  Photos Courtesy: Kimi Wei

Photos Courtesy: Kimi Wei

Bergen Community College student Ivan Wei believes equality is colorblind – and so is he.  Perhaps not in the literal sense – Wei can see just fine – but for this self-described “Chinese-Hispanic-Native American-Irish-Jew” with light skin, race means little when discussing human rights issues.

“I want equality for all people,” he said.  “To tell you the truth, I want to end racism.”

That philosophy encouraged Wei, a resident of Fair Lawn, to build the college’s chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) from the ground up during the last two years – conventional stereotypes regarding what color skin is needed to join the organization aside. The NAACP maintains membership from all races, and Bergen’s chapter follows suit.

“We are the most diverse NAACP chapter in the state. We have people of all ages, races and sexual orientation,” he said.

Wei has served as president of the group, whose membership peaked at 70, since its inception, helping develop activities such as voter registration drives and candidate forums. His dedication to the organization led to his election as the state’s NAACP youth and college chairman last year.

This year, Wei earned an even more prestigious post: Region II youth and college chairman, putting him at the helm of 100 chapters from Delaware to Maine.

During his two-year term as chairman, Wei plans on increasing the number of college chapters, encouraging new service projects and setting the ambitious goal of making each chapter in his region compliant under the terms of the NAACP.

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