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Last Update: Thursday June 29, 2017

Frank Jao, Bridgecreek Development and The American Dream

Understand the language of banking


Westminister, California:  Meet Frank Jao; he came from Vietnam yet he has deep Chinese roots.   We had the honor of spending a day with him and his family.  In 1975 they came to the USA on a C-130 (military aircraft) to Camp Pendleton. 

They had nothing.

He was the middle child of a large, poor family, a Vietnamese mother and Chinese father. At the age of 11 he got a job delivering newspapers. By the age of 13 he had six "employees" and they were the delivery system for a Da Nang newspaper.  By the time he turned 18 he was working for the US Marines.

Within 48 hours of arriving in California, he got a job as a vacuum cleaner salesman. Within a year he had taken the courses to qualify to become a realtor. With three years he was developing property for others. Within four years he became the founder of Bridgecreek Development and he broke ground on his first building of 50,000 square feet.

That was 1979. Today, Bridgecreek literally owns millions of square feet in California and in China; and he has inspired the development of even more. California has become his home and the home of over 400K Vietnamese and their de facto capital outside of Vietnam.

Meet the people who created Little Saigon.

Frank Jao has been recognized by the President of the USA and today Frank is the president of the Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce West Coast and he is spending 25% of his time taking US businesses into Asia.

Immigrants to the USA remind us that this land is a light on the hill, a beacon to the world. We know that business works best within a democratic, ethical society.  Where there is trust, capital can be leveraged.  The miracle of our Bill of Rights and the Constitution is the focus on both our freedoms and responsibilities. In this light, there is no better story for us to tell than that of two people who in 1975 came here with nothing yet today they redefine wealth and have forever changed the face of this nation.

Here are great business lessons for us all.

Keep an eye out for the American Flag. It keeps popping up among all the other cultural symbols of these Asian people. A symbol of freedom and liberty, it is on everything - from buildings to ties - and for a reason.

Here is a dream story for all immigrants to the USA.   More on The American Dream.

Learn To See What's Not There

1:27 | Play Now

Frank Jao envisioned a home away from home for immigrants from Viet Nam. 

Choose A Powerful Name

1:57 | Play Now

Frank Jao worked with his banker to come up with the name of his company.

Invest, Don't Spend

2:49 | Play Now

Cathie and Frank Jao had no material possessions when they arrived in Southern California in 1975.  Education, hard work and saving to invest in their own company has made them wealthy.

Learn The Language Of Banking

4:38 | Play Now

Just like Frank learned to speak English, he learned the language of banking.

Answer Every Question

1:05 | Play Now

Host Hattie Bryant says that Frank Jao methodically learned what he needed to learn to launch and build a multi-million dollar operation in his new country.

Move Yourself Up and Out

2:54 | Play Now

Cathie Jao is in charge of office happiness and Frank is busy on global projects.

Combine Intangibles With Tangibles

4:52 | Play Now

Bridgecreek doesn't just provide a place for its tenants to operate businesses; it provides what Frank calls a cultural center and all their customers are treated with great warmth and respect by the entire staff. 

Find A New Goal

2:02 | Play Now

The young leaders at Bridgecreek free the founder to pursue projects in Asia.

Be A Giver Not A Taker

2:28 | Play Now

Frank has done so much for his community, the city leaders gave him his own exit off a busy Southern California freeway.