Stacy Biney says President Donald Trump's portrayal of majority black and Latino nations as "s***holes" that send too many immigrants to the U.S. is painful.
"It really does hurt to not be viewed as American as someone else," Biney said Friday.
She is the daughter of Nigerian immigrants who is a living example of some statistics that might surprise President Trump.
Forty-three percent of African immigrants hold a bachelor's degree or higher, compared to 33 percent of Americans on average, according to a study cited by conservative pollster Frank Luntz.
Luntz tweeted the statistics and noted that Nigerian-Americans in particular have a median household income much higher than average.
Biney's family is a perfect example. Her parents came to the U.S. in the 1980s and worked in a Texas electronics assembly factory to pay for college. Her father became a small business owner, and her mother is a registered nurse.
The couple raised a high achieving family while living in a modest apartment in Baltimore.
Biney, 30, is a Georgetown University-trained lawyer working for the Attorney General of the District of Columbia. One sister is on track to become a pharmacist, another is training as a physician's assistant and a brother is in college.
"When people come here, they want to contribute to the society," Biney said. "They want to part of America. My parents raised us to feel we are part of America."
Maryland is second only to Texas among states with the most Nigerian-American immigrants. More than 31,000 Maryland residents were born in Nigeria.