Going Against The Grain: Jeannie Mai

Jeannie Mai, Style Expert and co-hose of the nationally syndicated daytime show The Real

Aside from her well-known hosting duties at Style Network, Jeannie Mai is also engaged in several philanthropic causes around the world. Jeannie frequently travels to Asia to volunteer with organizations, such as Heartbeat Vietnam – a nonprofit devoted to improving health care for impoverished children, and NightLight International – an organization committed to rescuing women and children from trafficking by providing employment and vocational opportunities. Jeannie Mai definitely exemplifies all the passions we embrace at ATG and is the perfect spotlight to tie together our love for fashion and providing support and aid to orphanages in Asia.

Full Name: Jeannie Camtu Mai
Hometown: San Jose CA
Current City: LA
Ethnicity: Vietnamese/ Chinese

What does it mean to you to “Go Against The Grain?”

Going Against The Grain is to continuously have a “can do” attitude. It’s optimism, positivity, wisdom, humility, a spiritual and mental combination to propel you forward to face fears and conquer dreams.

What made you decide to pursue your career path?

I’m passionate about developing communities to empower women. I did it in small circles in my hometown of San Jose and SF, teaching women to be the best version of themselves through makeup and personal style, and I realized I could impact so many more through television. So I packed my bags and moved on to pursue my dream.

What have been some of the challenges you faced/lessons you learned as an Asian American in this field?

When it came to auditioning and meeting with bigger household name brands and networks, there was certainly a “type” that these companies would go for to “relate” to their audience. This usually was a Caucasian female who could be slightly conservative or trendy/sexy. I noticed this when I used to be in rooms where this was primarily the type. This actually made it easier for me to remember why I was “different.” Not because I was Asian, but because I’m myself. Whether you recognized me as sassy, edgy or outspoken, there was no doubt that there was only one Jeannie Mai. I nailed all of these auditions, by the way.

What do you feel is your biggest accomplishment, and why?

My biggest accomplishment is being a working Asian American woman in mainstream media. Many talented, intelligent women from my own countries of Vietnam and China are restricted from living their dreams because of the country laws, the judgement of society, finances…the idea to just love what you do is a blessing I wish upon every woman worldwide.

What’s up next?

The Real, coming Sept 15th this fall. We ’bout to turn up.

Quote to live by: “Get up. Dress up. Show up. Never give up.”

Sign (Eastern Animal Sign & Western Zodiac): Year of the Horse and Capricorn. Still don’t know what that all means.

Passionate about: My mission is to celebrate people’s potential.

Favorite food: All Vietnamese cuisine.

Can’t live without: Mai faith.

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