Monday April 1, 2019

By: Naiia Lajoie

Bichlien Nguyen hails from Hue city in central Vietnam, the nation’s former capital during the Nguyen Dynasty. In 1975, she and her family moved to Saigon, only to flee Southern Vietnam thereafter amidst the country’s hardships. Having such a regal namesake coupled with a tumultuous escape almost serves as an auspicious omen for the lofty goals she would ultimately achieve and expectations she would come to surpass.

During her time in Vietnam Bichlien studied Vietnamese literature while attending Saigon University. After landing in America she continued her education, graduating from UC Davis with a Bachelor Degree’s in Computer Science.

Over the years she worked her way to the position of software manager, leading software engineering teams in large-scale high-tech companies across the United States. Today she is a Senior Program Manager, drafting large contracts across multiple companies & organizations and leading business deals with costumers both domestically and around the world.

Despite being in such a high-octane work environment, Bichlien lives to serve the community; she helps those who are sick and/or in need. She donates in order to help provide food and education to orphans, as well as housing to the less fortunate back in her mother country of Vietnam. Whenever she can she participates in community events, supports various charities, and is perpetually involved in fundraising programs.

When she is not volunteer-emceeing during many of the Bay Area’s Vietnamese community events, she gives her time as a fashion model to multiple Vietnamese Ao Dai designers. She graces the catwalk in order to raise funds for the many aforementioned causes she believes in. Also a singer, she shares her talent with the community, furthering awareness for certain non-profits that align with her own platform.

These actions lead to Bichlien becoming very well known in Northern California’s Vietnamese community. Her many accolades include being the first Vietnamese television newscaster for San Jose’s channel 48, as well as being on-air on Trung Duong Television. Her passions include art and literature, harkening back to her Saigon degree days. She selects non-profit organizations to volunteer for which preserve and cultivate Asian art & culture. During the Ao Dai Festival in May of 2018, the US’ largest Vietnamese arts & culture nonprofit organization named Bichlien the “Mother Au Co” (Mother of Vietnam).

Bichlien‘s hard work – from her humble beginnings abroad, to her climb in corporate America, and her gracious nature – did not go unnoticed. In March of 2018 she was crowed Mrs. Vietnam California, and later went on to capture the Mrs. Asia USA International title in November of the same year. In retaining her humility throughout her activism in the Vietnamese community and support of multiple charitable programs, she has provided a shining example to all Vietnamese-American women.

All of this illustrates that Bichlien truly is more than just a foreign beauty. She maintains her role as a good wife, takes pride in being a good mother, and is simply a good person. It is within her inherent nature to want to better society. By participating in the Mrs. Asia USA competition she brought to light the value of Vietnamese tradition, contributing its art & culture to the 30th anniversary of the pageant, put on by Virgelia Productions. Moving forward she only hopes to continue her journey in exuding love and passion, by continuously serving humanity in any capacity she can.

San Francisco-based fashion designer and creative artist, Tuan Tran, known for his exclusive one-of-a-kind custom designed to fit the occasion and environment for many of his clients. This Ao Dai was hand painted on silk & embroidered in red artistic tropical flowers Royal Poinciana, the flower only blossoms in Vietnam during Summer. This was designed specifically for a performance wherein Bichlien sang a love song. Photo credits: Leon Saspertien & Kin Vong

This dress was created to be worn by the recipient of the “Mother Au Co” honor, which Bichlien received during the Ao Dai Festival last May 2018, organized by the biggest Vietnamese arts & culture nonprofit organization in the US. While wearing it she embodies the Vietnamese legend “Me Âu Cơ”, the mother of Vietnamese civilization. Specially crafted in French velvet and accentuated with exotic designs, this green gown is covered in lotus flowers, representing pure spirit, elegant beauty, and royalty. The yellow floral accents on both the headpiece and embellish on the dress, were of pure 24 karat gold. Around the collar of this exquisite piece are jade and precious green gemstones. Valued at $40,000 USD Special credit to the designer, Do Trinh Hoai Nam, top designer in Vietnam and was one the International Designers to open the New York Couture Fashion Week 2017, and at the Paris Fashion Week 2018. He was also voted as the 2017 Ao Dai Designer of the Year. Photographers: Andreas Zhou & Kin Vong


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