Originating from South Vietnam, they were quickly introduced to American households in cities and suburbs across the nation. They were rapidly embraced as beloved sons and daughters of tightly-knit American families. Despite their desire to fit in, they were conscious of their distinctiveness. They were often stopped by strangers who inquired about their background, to which they were frequently unable to provide an answer, resulting in a painful experience.
Janet Paxton Gardner is the producer, director and writer of award-winning documentaries on Vietnamese and Cambodian subjects as well as a notable film on the life of American Peter Cooper. In recognition of her work with the Gardner Documentary Group, she received a Guggenheim Fellowship for 2015-2016. Her documentary, Quakers: The Quiet Revolutionaries, is currently being distributed in the U.S. by American Public Television and internationally by PBS International. Ms. Gardner began her career as a film editor, field producer and news writer for WNBC and WRC-TV. She also was a staff feature writer for the Cleveland Plain-Dealer and contributor to major newspapers such as the New York Times and Boston Globe. She is an alumna of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts and Cooper Union.