Born in the Philippines, Jose Antonio Vargas was 12 years old when his mom sent him on a plane to America in August 1993. Four years later, he learned he was undocumented when he tried to apply for a learner’s permit at the California DMV. Vargas went on to have a successful career as a journalist, winning the Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of the 2007 Virginia Tech shooting rampage. In 2011, he shared his immigration status in a widely publicized essay in The New York Times Magazine. “Tough as it was, coming out about being gay seemed less daunting than coming out about my legal status,” he wrote. Vargas published his first book, “Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen,” in 2018 and his second book, “White Is Not a Country,” is set to be released in 2023. An Emmy-nominated filmmaker and Tony-nominated producer, he founded and runs the nonprofit media advocacy organization Define American.