Maya Lin (born 1959) the daughter of Chinese immigrants, rose to fame in 1981 when as a 21 year old architectural student at Yale University, Lin won a contest to design the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. Her design beat out more than 1,400 entries. Less than a decade later, Lin designed another famous structure–the Civil Rights Memorial in Montgomery, Alabama. The monument outlines the major events of the Civil Rights Movement. Today, Lin’s designs can be found in several American cities and continue to inspire the entire nation.