Catching Up With the Joneses

Over the weekend, the NY Times reported on a new Census Bureau analysis of the most common surnames in the US.  For the first time, two Hispanic surnames – Garcia and Rodriguez – made the top 10 most common in the nation.  Martinez nearly cracked the top 10, coming in just after Wilson at number 11. 

So, where do we Asians fall into the mix?  The highest ranking Asian surname was none other than Lee, coming in as #22.  I suspect, however, that Lee’s ranking is bolstered by individuals of both Asian and Scottish descent.  Here’s a sampling of other Asian surnames:

No. 57 – Nguyen (up 172 spots)
No. 109 – Kim (up 124 spots)
No. 172 – Patel (up 419 spots)
No. 188 – Tran (up 219 spots)
No. 260 – Chen
No. 277 – Wong
No. 343 – Park
No. 368 – Le
No. 397 – Singh

I’m very surprised by the relatively low rankings of Chen and Wong.  With such a sizable Chinese-American population, I’d have bet money that they would have cracked the top 200.  I also wonder what impact the Filipino community had on the rankings of Hispanic surnames.       

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About Bo

A 30something, 1.5 generation Korean-American/New Yorker who spends her day as an HR exec. specializing in corporate diversity & inclusion. I get to think about ways to make "The Man" less male, white, and straight. It's the best job in the world! When I'm not trying to change corporate America, I teach yoga and dabble in holistic health counseling. I have an MBA from New York University Stern School of Business and my undergraduate from the University of Michigan. Lesser known facts about me: I enjoy b&w film photography, training for endurance races, and making homemade jam. Other mindless observations can be found at
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