Debbie was just three years old when she and her parents left a refugee camp in Hong Kong to seek a better life in Toronto, Canada. Like many of the other refugees in that camp, Debbie’s family has fled their adopted home of Vietnam as a result of that country’s Communist revolution. Debbie and her parents lived with relatives in a house close to Toronto’s Chinatown, 12 in a small home. While Debbie’s family arrived with virtually nothing and spoke no English, they later moved to Salt Lake City, buying the home in which they still live today.
While Debbie is an only child, her mother is one of 13 siblings and her father one of four. She has over 40 cousins scattered among China, France, Canada and the United States. Whether it was providing shelter or emotional support in adjusting to a new language and two new countries, Debbie’s extended family played a critical role in her parents’ pursuit of a better life in the West. As a result, Debbie possesses a strong sense of the importance of family.
Debbie graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in Electrical Engineering and currently works as a Project Engineer at a government contractor, leading a team of Engineers through the development of military-grade secure communication systems. As much as she enjoys the challenges that engineering presents, she also focuses on spending time with her family and friends and getting involved in her community. Several years ago, she began taking acting classes and immediately fell in love with the craft and its expressive counterpoint to her vocation. Her enthusiasm for acting has only increased after her first theater performance through East West Players Conservatory: Studio Lab Project. She also nurtures her creativity through playing piano, singing, dancing, and writing.
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