08:30 Welcome Remarks (Terrace Pavilion)

Katie Kalvoda, Board Member, AAPI Victory Fund; President, Asian Americans Rising
Mayor Katrina Foley, Costa Mesa
Dr. Tung Nguyen, Chair, AAPI Progressive Action; Board Member, AAPI Victory Fund

09:00 Keynote Remarks (Terrace Pavilion)

The Honorable John Chiang, Former California State Treasurer and California State Controller

09:15 Data & Tech Roundtable | Up For Grabs: AAPI Voters And The Future Of Our Nation (Terrace Pavilion)

Hear the latest on polling and issues that matter to the AAPI Community.

Moderator: Dave Min, Assistant Professor of Law, University of California, Irvine Law School
Karthick Ramakrishnan, Principal, CRW Strategy
Deepak Puri, Co-founder, Democracy Labs
Tom K. Wong, Associate Professor of Political Science UCSD

10:30 Break

10:45 Civil Rights Roundtable | Moving The Dial: Issues That Activate Our Community (Terrace Pavilion)

This advocates roundtable will explore some of the most important civil rights issues facing the AAPI community and how community leaders and activists can mobilize for social justice.

Moderator: Luisa Blue, Executive Vice President, SEIU
Madihha Ahussain, Special Counsel, Muslim Advocates
Aisha Yaqoob Mahmood, Director, Asian American Advocacy Fund (GA)
Kham Moua, Immigration Manager, SEARAC
Thu Quach, PhD, Chief Deputy, Asian Health Services, and Staff, One Nation AAPI

12:15 Break

12:30 Lunch Roundtable | NextGen #AAPIHollywood: Asians in Entertainment and Activism (Terrace Pavilion)

Welcome: Lacy Lew Nguyen Wright, Board Member, Asian Americans Rising
Moderator
: Jess Ju, Director, Coalition of Entertainment
Vinny Chhibber, Producer, Writer, Actor and Philanthropist
Vivien Ngô, Actor and Singer
Nancy Wang Yuen, Sociologist, Pop Culture Expert and Author

01:30 Breakout Sessions

[Session A] Civic Engagement 2.0: Civic Engagement 2.0: Celebrating a New Generation of Progressive AAPI Women in Public Office (San Gabriel)

Be inspired and learn what motivates this new tidal wave of AAPI leaders in public office.

Moderator: GA Rep. Bee Nguyen and National Policy Advisor, New American Leaders
Farrah Khan, Irvine City Council
Kimberly B. Nguyen, Garden Grove City Council
Melissa Ramoso, Artesia City Council
Cindy Wu, Mountain View School District Board of Education

[Session B] Campaign Training 1.0 (San Carlos)

Want to know how to engage in the movement? Here’s how to start!

Training Partner: New American Leaders
Dr. Jose Paolo Magcalas, Anaheim Elementary School Board Member

[Session C] Bolstering Our Voice and Impact through 501c4 Power (San Felipe)

C4s are the gateway to community empowerment. More activists are using 501c4 structures to advance their organizing strategies, working towards deep community engagement and collective action. C4s are essential in political power building, filling gaps where C3s and PACs cannot. This session will explore what we can achieve by building 501c4 power through organizing.

Moderator: Joon Kim, Partner, New Paradigm Strategy Group
Shareen Punian, Board Chair, Tides Action Fund
Deborah Barron, Founder, New Left Accelerator
Nadia Belkin, Deputy Field Director, America Votes

03:00 Break

03:15 Breakout Sessions

[Session A] Coalition Building for Power and Impact: Fortifying Our Reach and Mobilizing Community Resources in Emerging Communities (San Gabriel)

Grow your resource network, knowledge and voice. Coalition building is essential to truly empowering the AAPI community, and the progressive movement works best when we engage. Intentionally cultivating multicultural community coalitions together with progressive partners is the force multiplier to bolstering the AAPI voice for power and greater impact. Hear from activists and community leaders talk about flipping our work from segmented success to building an infrastructure for sustained progressive collaboration.

Moderator: Vivian Chang, Civic Engagement Manager, Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance
Thy Bui, Community Action Fund Board Member, Planned Parenthood of Orange and San Bernardino Counties
Andrew Fahmy, Director, Partnership, Communications, and Program Development, Multi-Ethnic Collaborative of Community Agencies (MECCA)
Duy Nguyen, One APIA Nevada
Tricia Nguyen, CEO, Southland Integrated Services, Inc.
Dilawar Syed, Co-founder, AAPI Victory Fund; Emgage Action

[Session B] Campaign Training 2.0 (San Carlos)

Want to join or volunteer for a campaign? Here’s how to start with Campaign Training 1.0!

Training Partner: New American Leaders

Moderator: Dr. Jose Paolo Magcalas, Anaheim Elementary School Board Member
Juan Alvarez, Anaheim Elementary School Board Member
Farrah Khan, Irvine City Council

[Session C] C4 Action Planning: Ramping up Foundation Dollars (San Felipe)

Newer 501c3s and c4s are in the dark about how foundations and donor advisors operate, think and evaluate their giving. We’ll take the mystery out of the process, help set concrete action steps to tap into these resources, explore grassroots fundraising strategies and spotlight the role of fundraising consultants and when to engage one.

Moderator: Dr. Tung Nguyen, Chair, AAPI Progressive Action; Board Member, AAPI Victory Fund
Varun Nikore, President, AAPI Victory Fund and Executive Director, AAPI Progressive Action
Syd Yang, Donor Advisor - West Coast, Movement Voter Project

[Session D] Engaging the Media: A Practical How To Guide (San Pedro/San Diego)

Strategic communications inspires change, raises public awareness and drives social change. Join us for this practical session in making sure your story gets heard. Learn how to hone your message, manage the press and leverage technology to bolster your impact.

Moderator: Toby Chaudhuri, Co-founder and Chief Strategist, SocialxDesign and Former White House Communications Strategist
Raghu Devaguptapu, Partner, Left Hook Strategy
Rebecca Lee, Partner and Chief Marketing Officer, DAWN
Deepak Puri, Co-founder, Democracy Labs
Naomi Tacuyen Underwood, Executive Director, Asian American Journalist Association

04:45 Plenary | Fireside Chat – Champions for Public Service (Terrace Pavilion)

Moderator: Brad Jenkins, Managing Director and Executive Producer, Funny or Die
Speaker: The Honorable Vinai K. Thummalapally, Former U.S. Ambassador to Belize

05:15 Closing Remarks

Varun Nikore, President, AAPI Victory Fund, and Executive Director, AAPI Progressive Action

05:30 Conclude Summit


SPEAKERS


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Luisa Blue

Executive Vice President of Service Employees International Union (SEIU)

Moderating the Session - Civil Rights Roundtable | Moving The Dial: Issues That Activate Our Community

Bay Area resident Luisa Blue, a longtime activist in the Filipino American community and prominent labor leader, made history in May when she was elected International Executive Vice President at the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). This historic election, which took place during Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage month, makes her the first AAPI to serve as an international officer at the union and one of the highest-ranking Asian Americans in the labor movement today.

Blue has dedicated her life to helping workers have a voice at work and build a better future for their families. Prior to her new position at SEIU International, she served as Chief Elected Officer of SEIU Local 521, which represents more than 55,000 public service workers who provide vital community services from the Silicon Valley down the Monterey-Santa Cruz coast and into California’s Central Valley. Before becoming CEO at Local 521, Blue served as president of Local 400, representing city and public sector employees, making her the first local union AAPI president.

Blue’s beginnings in the labor movement started 40 years ago when as a registered nurse at San Francisco General Hospital in 1977, she joined the union, where she became more empowered and active, and helped organize a successful campaign that resulted in improved patient care, improved patient-to-nurse ratios and better working conditions for healthcare workers. Later, she expanded the fight to unite nurses on a national level as a founding member of the SEIU Nurse Alliance.

While she is a well-known leader in the labor movement across the United States, many Filipinos in the Bay Area and California know of Blue because of her passion to build better futures for all families. Many will recall her from her days as a community activist when she publicly denounced the Marcos dictatorship and led events to bring attention to his anti-worker regime. 

Her parents, who immigrated from the Philippines, instilled in her a drive to help others. Blue never forgot her parents’ struggles, which led her to fight for immigrant nurses so they could provide healthcare in the United States and fought for worker rights for undocumented sweatshop women garment workers in Alameda County.

Blue believes that "Together, we know our diversity is the key heading toward November.”

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?: 

Lately, we have seen an increase in the unionization of AAPI workers. SEIU represents the largest number of unionized AAPI workers in the healthcare industry and public services. The workers join unions to have a voice on the job and to bargain on issues that affect their working conditions, but more importantly, to advocate for their communities. Often times, it is the first time they have been asked to get involved politically. As our AAPI communities continue to grow, it is important to recognize that along with that growth is the need to raise our voices in the political arena so our issues are taken seriously by elected officials. Our history shows that those who came before us have united on common issues and advocated for change for the common good, from improving their working lives, organizing against the incarceration of the Japanese during WWII, to joining with Civil Rights Movement in the 60’s. Now that the attack on immigrant communities have only increased, we as a community have an obligation to elect the right people into office, to increase our representation at all levels of government and to make a difference.


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Aisha Yaqoob Mahmood

Director at Asian American Advocacy Fund

Speaking at Session - Civil Rights Roundtable | Moving The Dial: Issues That Activate Our Community

Aisha serves as the Director of the Asian American Advocacy Fund, and the former Policy Director at Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Atlanta. She is an advocate for immigrant rights with experience working with legislators on both sides of the aisle to push for civil rights for immigrants and people of color. In 2018, Aisha ran for office in a heavily-AAPI populated district in Northern Gwinnett county. Her experience in running for office and advocacy have further propelled her desire to engage in electoral politics. 

Aisha is passionate about voting rights, access to healthcare and education, and immigration. She believes in upholding the civil rights and civil liberties for all people, especially those whom have been historically underrepresented.

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?

AAPIs are the keys to progressive change and can lead the way for many communities across the country. We just need to get activated and engaged!


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Thu Quach

Chief Deputy of Administration, Programs at Asian Health Services and Staff, One Nation AAPI

Speaking at Session - Civil Rights Roundtable | Moving The Dial: Issues That Activate Our Community

Thu Quach, PhD has been working in public health and healthcare for over two decades. Her research, service, and advocacy work have been grounded in her own lived experience as a refugee from Vietnam, and the struggles her family faced in the healthcare system. Trained as an epidemiologist, she has conducted community-based research, focusing on Asian Americans and immigrant populations, including examining occupational exposures and health impacts among Vietnamese nail salon workers.  This work was inspired by her own mother, who passed from cancer at the age of 58, after working as a cosmetologist for decades. These research findings have contributed to the extraordinary work of the California Healthy Nail Salon Collaborative, informing community engagement with the nail salon workforce and policy advocacy. Dr. Quach currently serves as the Chief Deputy of Administration at Asian Health Services, a federally qualified health center in Oakland serving approximately 28,000 patients in English and 14 Asian languages. She is involved in local, statewide, and national research and policy efforts to promote health equity.  In addition, she has been very involved in a relatively new organization – the Progressive Vietnamese American Organization (PIVOT), which engages and empowers Vietnamese Americans for a just and diverse America. Dr. Quach received her Bachelors of Art as U.C. Berkely, her Masters in Public Health at U.C.L.A. and her Ph.D. in Epidemiology at U.C. Berkeley. 

Why should AAPI’s get involved in 2020? 

As a refugee who came to the US as a child, I am a proud recipients of public benefits, which helped me become who I am today. I am outraged by the attacks on immigrant communities, including forcing immigrants to choose between accessing basic services and keeping families together.  As Americans, we must come together to steer the moral compass of this nation.


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Farrah N. Khan

Council Member, City of Irvine

Speaking at Session - Civic Engagement 2.0: Ushering In a New Generation of Progressive AAPI Women into Public Office

Councilmember Farrah N. Khan is a small business owner and the Executive Director of the Newport Mesa Irvine Interfaith Council. She is a graduate of UC Davis and previously served eight years as a Regulatory Affairs Manager for a major biotech company. She was elected to the Irvine City Council in 2018.

Farrah is a PTA member and has served as PTA President for three terms at Deerfield Elementary, PTA Board at Venado Middle School and on the School Site Council at Irvine High. Farrah and her husband are also Legacy Partners with the Irvine Public School Foundation.

Farrah has worked extensively with many community organizations in Irvine and Orange County. She has served on the Steering Committee for the Irvine Global Village Festival, is a CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) volunteer with the Irvine Police Department and an active member of the Irvine Rotary Club. She also serves on the faith council for the United Way. Farrah was appointed as a Community Services Commissioner in 2014, where she took the time to get to know the city parks, open spaces, land development, amenities, and employees.

She has received numerous awards and recognitions throughout the years which is a testament to her commitment to service. She was also awarded the Community Service Leader Award from the OC Human Relations Commission in 2015.

Farrah has been a resident of Irvine for almost 15 years and lives in Greentree with her husband and two sons (ages 14 and 17) and two foster sons (ages 12 and 13).

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?

 If we want our issues to be addressed, if we want a seat at the table, and if we want a future that includes us - then we need to get involved now.


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Kim Bernice Nguyen

Councilwoman District 6, City of Garden Grove

Speaking at Session - Civic Engagement 2.0: Ushering In a New Generation of Progressive AAPI Women into Public Office

Kim Bernice Nguyen was elected to the Garden Grove City Council on November 8, 2016. She is the first Garden Grove City Council Member of Hispanic descent. Her proposed district map was unanimously approved by the City Council to be used for the City’s first district elections in 2016.

Council Member Nguyen has called Garden Grove home since the age of ten. She attended Clinton-Mendenhall Elementary, Doig Intermediate, and Santiago High School. In 2013, she graduated from the University of California Santa Cruz with a degree in politics and a minor in legal studies. She is the first in her family to graduate high school and receive a college degree.

She currently works as a medical policy specialist and trainer at Blue Shield of California Promise Health Plan. Prior to that, she was an intern and a volunteer for then Senator Lou Correa.

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?:

It is important that the diaspora of the AAPI community is represented in our government. If we don't step up and make our voices heard we will not have adequate representation. It is important that every generation gets involved as there are significant gaps in the understanding of the AAPI community. It's continuously evolving and as such our government should evolve with it.


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Cindy Wu

Board Member, Mountain View School District, LA County School Trustee Association

Speaking at Session - Civic Engagement 2.0: Ushering In a New Generation of Progressive AAPI Women into Public Office

Cindy Wu is an educator, businesswoman, and education advocate who has been a part of El Monte for almost 30 years.  She is currently serving on the City of El Monte Planning Commission. Cindy was the first person in her family to graduate from college, and she understands the importance of a solid education.  She is running for School Board to improve the performance of our schools and serve as a responsive advocate for students and parents in El Monte and South El Monte.  

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?

According to AREAA’s State of Asia America report, the U.S. Census projects that an estimated 25.7 million AAPIs are currently living in the United States. Between 2000 and 2015, the AAPI population grew by 72.2%. U.S. Census and Nielsen reports show that AAPIs will outnumber Hispanic-Americans by 2055 and will become the largest minority group in the country, not only because of immigration but also because of domestic growth. 

The current AAPI demographic is heterogeneous and culturally diverse. AAPIs are becoming more multiracial and integrated into American culture. With the growing populations of AAPI, it is our responsibility to make sure our voices are heard and we are being represented. Our voices can be heard only when we have a seat at the table. From the inside of governing policies, that's where the real impact is made for the generations that follow us. Let's step-up and prepare our AAPIs to be the voice of the community.


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Joon I. Kim

Partner at New Paradigm Strategy Group

Moderating the Session - Bolstering Our Voice and Impact through 501c4 Power

Joon I. Kim is a partner at New Paradigm Strategy Group and has over 16 years of experience in Democratic politics. Joon works with clients to integrate grassroots campaign strategy with digital media strategy. Clients have included the Australian Labor Party, the AFL-CIO, Microsoft, and numerous others. Prior to joining the New Paradigm team, Joon coordinated fourteen independent expenditure campaigns in six states, on behalf of the Communications Workers of America.

Joon’s expertise lies in designing, managing, and implementing sophisticated campaigns that combine digital, grassroots field operations, turnout programs, and vote-by-mail programs. He has extensive experience in voter identification, targeting, coalition building, digital and grassroots organizing. Joon has advised campaigns in Australia and the U.S. at all levels.


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Madihha Ahussain

Special Counsel for Anti-Muslim Bigotry at Muslim Advocates

Speaking at Session - Civil Rights Roundtable | Moving The Dial: Issues That Activate Our Community

Madihha Ahussain serves as special counsel for anti-muslim bigotry at Muslim Advocates and heads the Program to Counter Anti-Muslim Hate. Ms. Ahussain works with a coalition of organizations to combat anti-Muslim efforts by public officials. In addition, she monitors hate crimes targeting American Muslims, works with communities to respond to threats or incidents of violence, and mosque opposition.

During law school, she excelled in numerous regional and national moot court competitions, including the Whittier Juvenile Law competition where she was a member of the Best Overall Team and was named Best Oral Advocate, as well as the Jerome Prince Memorial Evidence competition where she was a national finalist and was given the award for Best Oral Advocate in the Final Round. She was also honored by the State Bar of California with the Wiley W. Manuel Certificate for Pro Bono Legal Services for outstanding community service during her law school career.Ms. Ahussain was a recipient of summer public interest fellowships from both the South Asian Bar Association of Northern California and the Hastings Public Interest Law Foundation, which allowed her to pursue her interests in civil rights work. She interned with U.S. District Court Judge Edward Chen of the Northern District of California, the Asian Law Caucus, and the ACLU of Southern California. Ms. Ahussain also worked part-time in a small law firm during and after college.Ms. Ahussain received her B.A. with a double major in Sociology, and Psychology and Social Behavior from the University of California at Irvine and earned her J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?

We have an important opportunity to contribute to meaningful change in America to make this country a place where we all feel safe and welcome.


Deepak Puri

Co-Founder at DemLabs

Speaking at Session - AAPI Voters and The Future of Our Nation

Deepak is a Silicon Valley veteran (Oracle, Netscape, VMware) who co-founded DemLabs after the last presidential election. Its mission is to provide Democrats with an advantage in technology and digital storytelling. It works with candidates and campaigns to identify their needs and then finds innovative, affordable solutions. DemLabs innovates rapidly by using existing apps rather than develop new ones, and freely shares its findings.

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?: 

“If you are not at the table, you are on the menu". AAPIs need to be involved to make sure their voices are heard and their interests represented.


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Syd Yang

Pronouns: They/Them

Donor Advisor at Movement Voter Project 

Speaking at Session - C4 Action Planning: Ramping up Foundation Dollars

Syd Yang is a mixed race/Taiwanese American queer healer, writer and healing justice warrior who currently serves as the West Coast Donor Advisor for Movement Voter Project, as well as leading Blue Jaguar Healing Arts in Los Angeles. 

The core of their work focuses on the lived and inherited experiences of people of color and queer + trans people. Over the years, Syd has worked extensively with young women, queer folks + emerging artists as a counselor and coach, as well as a philanthropic advisor and giving coach to families + young inheritors working to align their resources and power with social justice values. They are the author of several books and curriculum on philanthropy and healing justice, such as: The World Belongs to Us: Young Women, Leadership + Philanthropy (2003), Legacy + Innovation (values based giving in families) (2007), and Release: A Bulimia Story (2018). In the early 2000s, Syd served as a Senior Program Officer at the Women's Foundation of California then later joined Changemakers as their Program Director. Syd also was on the board of Resource Generation for several years and was an early contributor to the racial justice and donor of color organizing work with RG. 

In all areas of their work, Syd supports individuals and communities in transforming resources, energies and stories in ways that move towards wholeness, regeneration and collective liberation. 

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?: 

As AAPIs here in the States, we represent a variety of perspectives and histories (both painful and empowered) that embody the ethos of this country: resilience, innovation, success and a rootedness in community. To get engaged and vote in 2020 is to remember that our voices are powerful, and that we can exercise that power to inform a future in which we all thrive. All AAPI (immigrant, refugee, US born, etc) voices matter and voting declares that we will not be silent nor erased moving forward. We have played key roles in this country’s past, and we will absolutely be a powerful player in our collective future. 


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Deaborah Barron

Founder / Executive Director at New Left Accelerator 

Speaking at Session -  Bolstering Our Voice and Impact through 501c4 Power

Deborah is an attorney who led a prior life as a political junkie and consultant for progressive political candidates, not-for-profit and advocacy organizations, and foundations. She started her career in politics as the Field Director for Congresswoman Lynn Wolsey and eventually served as the Communications Director for Chellie Pingree's 2002 U.S. Senate Campaign. In between, she worked at numerous political-consulting firms and advocacy organizations, including Staton Hughes & Shafer, Spitfire Strategies, and Americans for Gun Safety. She then became an attorney. After practicing law for nearly ten years, she left her law firm in December of 2016 to work on the New Left Accelerator (NLA), and NLA’s 501(c)(3) arm, The Capacity Shop, full time.

Deborah has a law degree from U.C. Berkeley School of Law, a Masters in Journalism from Northwestern University, and a M.A. in Political Science from U.C. Berkeley.  She currently serves on the board of Women Lawyers On Guard, lives in San Francisco, and is the proud and tired mom of Ryder Jane (5) and Hudson Townes (almost 3).


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Duy Nguyen

Vice President & Chief Operating Officer for the Asian Community Development Council (ACDC)

Speaking at Session - Fortifying Our Reach and Mobilizing Community Resources in Emerging Communities

Duy Nguyen, in the aftermath of the 2016 political climate, pivoted his career from working with Fortune 500 companies - including Verizon Wireless, MGM Resorts International, and Cox Communications - to focus on investment, education, and engagement of Asian Pacific Islander Americans (APIA). 

Nguyen harnessed his business knowledge for his current role as Vice President & Chief Operating Officer for the Asian Community Development Council (ACDC), a Nevada non-profit and non-partisan community development organization serving the Asian and Pacific Islanders communities. At ACDC, Nguyen maps the overall strategic direction for outreach initiatives on civic engagement, health and wellness education, and workforce/leadership development programs. 

In June of 2018, Nguyen founded One APIA Nevada, a grassroots, non-profit organization that advocates for policies empowering everyday Asian Pacific Islander Nevadans. As executive director, Nguyen oversees a state-wide operation to educate and galvanize the APIA Nevadan constituency - every year, not just election cycles. In this role, Nguyen helped orchestrate APIA engagement and education in the lead up to the 2018 Midterm elections, which saw APIA voter turnout soar - up 216% from 2014’s midterm elections. 

Nguyen served 8 years as National Vice President of Chapter Development, National Vice President of Economic Development and then subsequently National Secretary of OCA National, a civil rights and education organization for Asian Pacific Americans with over 100 chapters and affiliates across the United States. In 2018, Nguyen was elected to serve as the chairperson for the Nevada Minority Health and Equity Coalition, a statewide non-profit membership coalition with over 60+ organizations aiming to reduce healthcare disparities across Nevada. 

Recently in January 2019, Nguyen was appointed to a 4-year term as a Planning Commissioner for Clark County, making him the first APIA person to serve as a Planning Commissioner in the history of Nevada. In this role, Nguyen represent one of the fastest growing districts in Nevada overseeing land use requests, non-conforming zone changes, and subdivision maps. 

Nguyen graduated from the prestigious America’s Leaders of Change program by the National Urban Fellows, an invitation-only leadership program with 50+ executives in private, public and non-profit sectors across the United States designed to address the challenges and opportunities facing our nation today. Nguyen holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Management, and a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) from the University of Phoenix. Mr. Nguyen resides in Las Vegas, Nevada with his wife and son.


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Kham S.Moua

Immigration Policy Advocate at Southeast Asia Resource Action Center

Speaking at Session - Moving The Dial: Issues That Activate Our Community

Kham S. Moua spearheads SEARAC’s immigration policy portfolio through policy analysis, community engagement, and legislative and regulatory advocacy. He also serves as co-chair of the National Council of Asian Pacific American’s Immigration Committee on behalf of SEARAC. Kham has spent over a decade community building, organizing, and advocating on a wide range of issues, ranging from immigration to military justice. His primary areas of expertise are in immigration and internet/technology policy.

Prior to SEARAC, Kham was the Associate Director of Policy and Advocacy at OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates. While there, he directed the organization’s policy, advocacy, and campaign efforts. Together with Asian Americans Advancing Justice – AAJC, he helped to establish the infrastructure for the AAPI Technology and Telecommunications Table, the only national coalition focused on those issues from an AAPI framework. Before OCA, he worked on state and local advocacy at Hmong National Development and Hmong American Partnership. Kham is also involved with AAPI LGBTQ organizations and issues. He currently serves as a board member for the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA) and was previously the chair of Shades of Yellow, an organization based in Minnesota focused on Southeast Asian LGBTQ equity.

Kham hails from Minnesota and holds a political science degree with a minor in Chinese from Winona State University, where he was part of Pi Sigma Alpha. In his free time, Kham enjoys catching up on politics; playing and analyzing video games; writing short stories and poetry; and repeating Ariana Grande and Fifth Harmony (RIP) on Spotify.

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020? 

Elections affect every aspect of our lives. We elect these individuals to make important decisions on behalf of our communities, from the placement of streetlights to who gets to live, work, and play in the country. It is imperative that AAPI communities demonstrate our political strength and ensure that we are a force pre and post-election.


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Nadia Nisha Belkin

Deputy Field Director (National) at America Votes

Speaking at Session - Bolstering Our Voice and Impact through 501c4 Power

Nadia Nisha Belkin serves as the Deputy Field Director at America Votes (AV), where she works on strategic planning and coordination of issue-based and electoral campaigns. She is committed to helping AV produce innovative ideas that will cultivate relationships within the progressive community and across multiple audiences. Prior to AV, she served as the Communications Director at the Interfaith Alliance of Colorado, where she developed grassroots trainings for new activists and mobilized community members to engage with the state legislature around racial, economic, and social justice issues. Nadia has lived, worked, and campaigned extensively in the battleground state of Colorado. Nadia is a graduate of Smith College and is pursuing a Master's in Public Policy and Community Engagement at the University of Denver.


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Andrew Fahmy

Director, Partnership, Communications, and Program Development at Multi-Ethnic Collaborative of Community Agencies (MECCA)

Speaking at Session - Fortifying Our Reach and Mobilizing Community Resources in Emerging Communities

Andrew Fahmy is the Director, Partnerships, Communications, and Program Development for the Multi-Ethnic Collaborative of Community Agencies (MECCA). MECCA aims to enhance and improve the quality of life for underserved multicultural communities by being a unified voice advocating to reduce ethnic disparities. Before joining MECCA Andrew held a position with Families and Communities Together (FaCT), a public-private partnership with the mission of promoting best practices, training, funding, and advocating for Family Resource Centers to be Orange County’s community-based platform for prevention activities and family support services. He also founded and currently serves as the Executive Director of the Community Camp Corporation, a 501c3 organization helping peer-led groups plan and host recreational camp experiences designed to improve each participant’s social, emotional, and leadership skills. Andrew graduated with a Bachelor’s in Anthropology from California State University, Fullerton.

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?: 

America at its best is a collaborative effort between cultures, generations, and religions. Integrating the AAPI voice into the daily decisions of lawmakers is crucial, not only for the success of the population, but for the country as a whole.


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Tom K. Wong

Associate Professor of Political Science at the UC, San Diego

Speaking at Session - Up For Grabs: AAPI Voters And The Future Of Our Nation

Tom K. Wong is an Associate Professor of Political Science at the UC, San Diego and recently served as an advisor to the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (WHIAAPI) under the Obama administration. He is the founding Director of the U.S. Immigration Policy Center (USIPC) at UC San Diego and also Director of the International Migration Studies Program Minor. 

His research focuses on the politics of immigration, citizenship, and migrant "illegality." As these issues have far-reaching implications, his work also explores the links between immigration, race and ethnicity, and the politics of identity. Wong's research has been used by policymakers both in the U.S. and in Mexico, as well as by organizations that serve immigrant communities. Wong and his work has been covered by ABC News/Univision, Fusion, NPR, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Yahoo News, and by Univision in Mexico. He is also on the board of the California Immigrant Policy Center, the board of New American Leaders, and recently served on the advisory council of Unbound Philanthropy. Wong also consults on campaigns and elections, specializing in mobilizing low-propensity voters of color and immigrant communities.


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Dilawar Syed

Co-founder, AAPI Victory Fund; Board Emgage Action

Speaking at Session - Fortifying Our Reach and Mobilizing Community Resources in Emerging Communities

As CEO at Lumiata, Dilawar is leading the company’s growth as a leader in AI and healthcare. Backed by Khosla Ventures, BlueCross BlueShield Ventures and Intel, Lumiata provides predictive analytics for managing health costs and risk. Earlier, Dilawar was President at Freshworks where he founded the company’s North America operations. Backed by Tiger Global, Accel, Google and Sequoia Capital, Freshworks raised $249 million along the way. 

Dilawar chairs California’s Entrepreneurship Task Force and drives inclusive entrepreneurship across the state. Dilawar is co-founder of AAPI Victory Fund and serves on the national board of Emgage, the country’s leading Muslim American civic organization. In 2010, President Obama appointed Dilawar to the President’s AAPI Commission. Dilawar was a member of the DNC’s Platform Committee in 2016 and advocated for entrepreneurship and immigration reform in the party platform. As a surrogate in Sec. Clinton and President Obama’s presidential campaigns, he campaigned in key states. He was a member of California AG Kamala Harris’ Policy Transition team. In 2008, Dilawar served as National Co-Chair of the DNC’s South Asian Leadership Council. 

Dilawar holds an M.B.A. from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. from the University of Texas at Austin.

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?

We're the key difference for a Democrat to beat Trump in key states.


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Vivian Chang

Civic Engagement Manager at Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA)

Moderating the Session: Fortifying Our Reach and Mobilizing Community Resources in Emerging Communities

Vivian (she/her/hers) is the Civic Engagement Manager at the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA). She oversees APALA's efforts on Census 2020, civic engagement, citizenship, and political work. Her new role builds on her recent leadership of APALA's field program in Nevada, coordinating and mobilizing AAPI communities for record voter turnout. She previously worked in federal science policy, as well as served two years as an AmeriCorps VISTA in Philadelphia, Pa., and Moline, Ill. She is dedicated to advancing social and economic justice informed by the collective power of communities, and to improving physical environments. Throughout her time at Carnegie Mellon and Princeton University, she dedicated time to cultivating AAPI community and building solidarity across communities of color. Vivian is a native of Columbus, Ohio, sprouting from dual Taiwanese and Buckeye traditions.  

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?: 

AAPIs are a driving force in the electorate and in activism broadly. We have a long history of leading and building power with social justice movements in the U.S. - the labor movement, the civil rights movement, climate change. But we can only continue advancing that progress if everyone one of us gets involved. To win in 2020, we have to build an unbreakable foundation of coalitions and community-based power that is led by the people first. The time is now for us to take control of our future and shape it into the progressive vision we want to see.


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Shareen Punian

Co-Founder at Democracy Labs

Speaking at Session: Bolstering Our Voice and Impact through 501c4 Power

Shareen Punian is co-founder of Democracy Labs. She comes from the world of strategy and finance with a career as an investment analyst, manager, and advisor. Shareen is also involved in social impact investing and working to accelerate change toward gender equity.

Shareen is the Chairman of the Board of The Tides Advocacy Fund and sits on the National Governing Board of Common Cause.

She has a B.A. from University of California at Davis, and a MBA from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University.

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?: 

We have economic power and the numbers to make a real difference in elections.  It is time for us to organize, and use our power to build the country that we want to see.


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Raghu Devaguptapu

Partner at Left Hook Communications

Speaking at Session: Engaging the Media: A Practical How To Guide

Sick of sleeping in a van while touring with his band during college, Raghu settled in for a more stable professional life: a Democratic political operative.

While it was definitely a step in the right direction in the eyes of his traditional Indian parents, it also seemed like a natural move. In India, Raghu's family history is woven in the Indian independence movement. His Great Grandfather was the first Governor of the southern state of Madras after Indian Independence.

While his parents gave up their dream of a physician in the family, they knew someone was bound to have the political and social justice blood flowing in their veins. 

Raghu has over twenty years of campaign experience and heads our Washington, DC office. A seasoned strategist known for his collaborative style, affable manner, and hands-on approach Raghu has led high profile independent expenditure, congressional, and statewide elections across the country, including Congressman Ami Bera's historic upset win in 2012 and subsequent re-election, which was one of the most expensive congressional races in history. 

Raghu was the first Asian American to be named Political Director of a national party committee - first at the DLCC and then at the DGA. While at the DLCC, he helped flip 30 chambers into Democratic control - the largest partisan Democratic shift in our nation's history. 

Raghu also managed the independent expenditure and issue advocacy program for AFSCME, overseeing one of the largest programs in Democratic politics.

Prior to joining Left Hook, Raghu was a partner at A|L Media.

A die-hard Green Bay Packer fan, Raghu lives in Washington DC with his wife Reema and their two daughters. 

Why should AAPI’s get involved going into 2020?

Our nation is at a crossroads, this election will help decide what type of country we want to be. There’s no sitting on the sideline. It’s time to be the change you want to see in the world AND its time own our power. 


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Jess Ju

Director of Programs and Operations, Coalition of Asian Pacifics in Entertainment (CAPE)

Speaking at Session: NextGen #AAPIHollywood: Asians in Entertainment and Activism

Jess Ju is the Director of Programs and Operations at CAPE, a non-profit organization that champions diversity by connecting, educating, and empowering AAPI artists and leaders in entertainment and media. At CAPE, she oversees pillar programs such as the CAPE New Writers Fellowship and the CAPE Leaders Fellowship.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, Jess has worked with numerous non-profit organizations in Los Angeles and the Bay Area. Prior to CAPE, Jess was the Assistant Company Manager at American Conservatory Theater, San Francisco’s largest non-profit theater, and spent several summers interning with East West Players.

Jess is a co-founder and producer of BAD Repertory Theater, an Asian American sketch comedy and improv group based in the Bay Area. She graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a double major in Theatre and Performance Studies and Media Studies.


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Vinny Chhibber

Producer, Writer, Actor, Philanthropist

Speaking at Session: NextGen #AAPIHollywood: Asians in Entertainment and Activism

A graduate of Emory University and the Stella Adler Conservatory in New York, actor/producer Vinny Chhibber has acted in, created, and developed numerous award-winning film and television projects. His television appearances include No Tomorrow, Brothers & Sisters, Chuck, Here and Now, Taken, and, on CBS, Rules of Engagement. He can be seen in the upcoming feature film Untitled Noah Baumbach Project.

Through his production company, Chhibber Mann Productions, he is executive producing the documentary Lost in America, which follows the stories of homeless youth in America. Also, he is a founder of the Ammunition Theatre Company. Both companies are founded on the premise of creative activism: using art to facilitate change in the communities around us.

Chhibber has worked with numerous philanthropic organizations including My Friends Place, the Boot Campaign, and Young Storytellers, among others. Also, he taught a class at Ghetto Film School, which identifies young talent from local communities and provides them with the opportunity and resources to pursue creative careers. He is passionate about working with young people in marginalized communities, mentoring them in filmmaking and storytelling.


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Vivien Ngô

Actor/Singer

Speaking at Session: NextGen #AAPIHollywood: Asians in Entertainment and Activism

Vivien Ngô is a second generation Vietnamese American actor/singer who is most known for her role as Trinh Phan on Ava Duvernay'sQUEEN SUGAR. The daughter of refugees, Vivien was raised in Orange County, CA — amidst the largest Vietnamese American community in the States. She attended the University of Minnesota/Guthrie Theater BFA Actor Training Program with initial aspirations to be a NY theatre actor. There, she trained extensively in both classical and contemporary stage acting and appeared in numerous plays, including the world premiere of THE HIDDEN PEOPLE by Joe Waechter at the Guthrie Theater. She also studied at and performed on stages at South Coast Repertory and Shakespeare’s Globe (in London, UK). Vivien returned to Southern California, hoping to join the ranks of Asian Americans and other women of color working to change media and mainstream entertainment. Vivien’s other credits include NCIS: New Orleans, SHAMELESS, and various films that have played at Slamdance, SXSW, and Cannes. Currently, Vivien is developing original narrative content & writing/recording her debut EP. She hopes to collaborate on projects that challenge political, social, and artistic norms.


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Nancy Wang Yuen

Author, Speaker and Sociologist

Speaking at Session: NextGen #AAPIHollywood: Asians in Entertainment and Activism

Nancy Wang Yuen, Ph.D., is a sociologist and pop culture expert. She is the author of Reel Inequality: Hollywood Actors and Racism (2016), the first book to examine the barriers actors of color face in Hollywood and how they creatively challenge stereotypes.

She also pioneered the first study of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders on television and the 10-year followup study, TOKENS ON THE SMALL SCREEN: Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders on Prime Time and Streaming Television (2017). She is also the author of TERRORISTS & TYRANTS: Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) Actors on Prime Time and Streaming Television (2018).

Nancy is a popular speaker on race and media, appearing on Dr. Phil, Al Jazeera English, BBC World TV, PRI, Teen Vogue, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Washington Post among others. She is a guest writer at CherryPicks, Elle, HuffPost and Remezcla.


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Toby Chaudhuri

Co-Founder of SocialxDesign

Moderating the Session - Engaging the Media: A Practical How To Guide

Toby Chaudhuri is an award-winning strategist and former advisor to The White House. He is co-founder of SocialxDesign, a strategy-consulting firm dedicated to bridging the worlds of social movements, online engagement and offline experience. With offices in Silicon Valley, San Francisco, and Washington D.C., Chaudhuri helps forward-looking NGOs, governments and businesses to grow by deliberately empowering the people they serve and has worked with leadership teams at PBS, Planned Parenthood, AARP and Morehouse College. Chaudhuri has managed more than $100 million in state and federal campaigns in the U.S. and abroad and has worked at the helm of national media operations. He worked hard to protect children as civil rights leader Marian Wright Edelman’s spokesman and media strategist at the Children’s Defense Fund; took on corporate polluters to provide safe drinking water and clean air as a political appointee to President Bill Clinton; and worked to elect several principled state and federal candidates including serving as press secretary to Vice President Al Gore's presidential campaign. He helped re-elect President Obama and helped Dilma Rousseff become the first female president of Brazil; he also helped re-elect Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, in major upset elections.

Why should AAPIs get involved going into 2020?

It’s time for us to find our own voice and to do our own organizing. We're stronger when we are beholden to each other as a national community, and weaker when we act only as individuals. With signs indicating that voter turnout next year could reach the highest levels in decades and a surge of new voters might produce the most diverse electorate in American history, we have an extraordinary opportunity to combine our local commitments with national strength to push forward on the reforms all of our families need.


Nancy Wang Yuen

Author, Speaker and Sociologist

Speaking at Session: NextGen #AAPIHollywood: Asians in Entertainment and Activism

Nancy Wang Yuen, Ph.D., is a sociologist and pop culture expert. She is the author of Reel Inequality: Hollywood Actors and Racism (2016), the first book to examine the barriers actors of color face in Hollywood and how they creatively challenge stereotypes.

She also pioneered the first study of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders on television and the 10-year followup study, TOKENS ON THE SMALL SCREEN: Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders on Prime Time and Streaming Television (2017). She is also the author of TERRORISTS & TYRANTS: Middle Eastern and North African (MENA) Actors on Prime Time and Streaming Television (2018).

Nancy is a popular speaker on race and media, appearing on Dr. Phil, Al Jazeera English, BBC World TV, PRI, Teen Vogue, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and Washington Post among others. She is a guest writer at CherryPicks, Elle, HuffPost and Remezcla.


Katie Kalvoda

President, Asian Americans Rising

Katie Kalvoda is the founder and CEO of 3G Ventures, a nonprofit specializing in innovative philanthropy, impact investments and community advocacy. She chaired the inaugural National Impact Investment Conference for Campden Wealth Conferences in September and serves as the founding member of Innovative Philanthropy at the Orange County Community Foundation.

Katie launched Asian Americans Rising and co-founded Women for American Values and Ethics (WAVE), super PACs for progressive political causes. She serves on the board of AAPI Victory Fund. Katie is a graduate of University of California, Berkeley.


Katrina Foley

Mayor of Costa Mesa, CA

In November of 2018, Costa Mesa voters chose Katrina Foley to be the city's first directly elected Mayor. Katrina also served as Mayor in 2016-2017, and has been on Council for 10 years, (2004-2010; 2014-2018). She previously served the public on the Newport Mesa Unified School District Board of Trustees from November 2010 to November 2014.  Katrina’s focus is on making Costa Mesa better for families. She has 2 college age boys who attended Costa Mesa Public Schools and is married to Casey Swanson, a local teacher.

Katrina currently serves on the Travel Costa Mesa Board and liaison to the Newport Mesa Arts Commission, Cultural Arts Committee, Bike and Walkability Committee and Orange County Fair. As a City Council member from November 2004 to November 2008, Katrina served as the Chair to the Redevelopment Agency and City Council liaison to the following: OC Fair, Newport-Mesa Unified School District, Youth in Government Program, Child Care amp; Youth Services Committee, Cultural Arts Committee, and Santa Ana River Trail Blue Ribbon Committee.  

Katrina has served as room mom, team mom and Mayor. She continues to volunteer her time and has served on numerous non-profit boards.