Inclusive Spaces

Meet Our Staff: Yaqing Zhang

In celebration of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) Heritage Month, we sat down with Yaqing Zhang, Staff Accountant, Revenue at The Trustees.

Yaqing Zhang at Suzanne's Garden

Meet Yaqing Zhang


What do you do at Trustees? What’s your role?

I’ve been with The Trustees for five years and my title is Staff Accountant – Revenue. I am in charge of generating revenue from nine different systems and issuing accounts receivable (A/R) invoices, overseeing deposits made by all properties, and other miscellaneous finance requests that come through.


What brought you to the Trustees?

I moved to the U.S. from China in 2017 and started taking ESOL (English Speakers of Other Languages) classes, but the instructors said my English was so advanced I really should go to college or start working. They connected me with a working program that had recently established a new internship with The Trustees. When I looked into the organization, I knew it was ideal; the mission, culture, and values were everything I wanted, and I was honored to be chosen as The Trustees’ first intern from this program. I originally interned with the Development Team for two or three months and they really wanted to keep me around. Unfortunately, there were no openings with that team but Finance was hiring, so I interviewed with them, got the job, and recently celebrated five years with The Trustees.


How does your AANHPI heritage contribute to the person you are today?

China has such a long history, and I feel like this great heritage, full of ups and downs, brings me a lot of wisdom. As a minority here in the U.S. I’ve personally experienced racism, but the wisdom to focus on all that my heritage has given me keeps me grounded and helps filter out these bad experiences. For people struggling or confused about their identity because of similar negative experiences, you are perfect as you are. You don’t need to be anyone else.


What advice do you have for anyone of similar heritage trying to follow in your footsteps?

I would say to do tons of research before moving here because it’s not easy. Everything in China was totally different and I had a pretty good life there, but then I needed to reset and restart. There are a lot of things not easy when you change the environment, but I was able to use the resources from my community here in the U.S. (like the library) to make things easier. That’s how I was able to get started and connect with people and opportunities, so it’s a great way for people following a similar path to get started themselves.


How have The Trustees supported you along this journey?

My team and managers have always provided tons of support, whether that’s with flexible work schedules (especially with having a baby) or helping me better understand workplace communication and conflict in this unfamiliar culture. I’m grateful for their support and understanding because it can be especially difficult for someone like me who was born and raised in a completely different culture. But not just my team and manager, the entire office was super friendly and supportive starting out as an intern and eventually full-time.


Why is it important to you that The Trustees celebrates AANHPI Heritage Month?

AANHPI is a group of people that have been easily ignored or even overtly excluded in the past here in the U.S. It’s important to take the time to make these amazing people more visible and celebrate all they’ve accomplished and the contributions they’ve made to this country. This is especially important for the younger people in the community, so they can feel connected to their heritage and culture. Generations upon generations of those of AANHPI heritage have fought for this recognition, so I’m grateful we celebrate it now.


Do you have a favorite property?

I’ve been to many properties across the state, from the Berkshires to the North Shore, but my favorite is a tie between World’s End and Eleanor Cabot Bradley Estate. Both are near to where I live and I love to go out and walk around, feeling the wind and the sunshine. It really makes me feel calm, peaceful, and relaxed.


What do you enjoy doing when you’re not at work?

Outside of work I really enjoy swimming. I’m from a subtropical area in China along the Pacific Ocean and it’s so hot you have to cool off in the water. But I find the Atlantic Ocean here so freezing that I’ve never tried fully swimming in it. So, I stick to mainly pools.

Yaqing Zhang in front of a blooming purple flower tree.
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