Congratulations to our new CLP 2011 class!
Randon Aea was born and raised on the island of Oahu in the state of Hawaii. He identifies himself as a Native Hawaiian (both of his parents are of Native Hawaiian heritage) with a mixed heritage of Chinese, English, Irish, German, Spanish, Portuguese, and Filipino. He has a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the University of Washington and a Master’s degree in Psychology from Seattle University. He is a licensed mental health counselor with Washington State. He has been the Branch Manager for the Rainier Branch of Therapeutic Health Services for the past 3 years and is responsible for the adult mental health services for the other 6 branches of Therapeutic Health Services in King and Snohomish Counties. He also is a part-time instructor at Seattle Central Community College where he teaches a Crisis Management course in the Social Human Services program. He also is an on-call Designated Mental Health Professional for King County Crisis and Commitment Services. In his free time, Randon enjoys traveling, playing golf, and trying new cuisines and restaurants.
Mindy Au was born and raised in the South, attended college in New Hampshire, and settled more or less in Seattle after spending a few years with the Burmese Karen community in Thailand. She is a 2010 graduate of the Evans School of Public Affairs and currently works at the International District Housing Alliance. Mindy enjoys spending time with family and friends over food, and she will play just about anything (flag football, soccer, Nintendo video games, card games, board games, and the list goes on).
Christopher Batalon was born in Oahu, Hawaii and is of Filipino decent. His mother has worked for the same hotel chain twenty years and has taught Chris the value of hard work. Chris feels that his mothers’ moral fiber goes unmatched. Her teachings and blessings empower Chris to continue his advocacy work. Chris is extremely passionate about providing anti-domestic violence education amongst community members as well as finding outlets for youth of color to help grasp their cultural identity. In his spare time he enjoys writing and performing spoken word, as well as playing sports with friends.
Justin Chan was born in Singapore and raised in Bellevue, Washington. He has extensive graphic design, PR and social media experience in the public sector. He designed the official program cover for the 2010 Washington State Democratic Convention as a Development/Event Intern at Washington State Democratic Central Committee. He also worked for Northwest Passage Consulting, drafting mail pieces, and conducting extensive research on voting trends, media coverage, and legislative activity. He is currently the Executive Assistant to the Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs and the IT Director for the Young Democrats of Washington. He aspires to attend law school. Justin graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelor’s in Political Economics and a Minor in Music. He served in the ASUW Senate and served as President of the UW Chinese Student Association, planning and attending numerous philanthropic and cultural events that supported the local Chinese community. Justin was selected as the 2011 CAPAA/ ACLF Fellow.
Yin Chan was born in Hong Kong. Went to elementary and junior high school in Washington D.C., and moved to Seattle, WA in the summer of 1999. She went to Renton High school and studied International Studies at the UW. In 2004 she started working at Cathay Bank. Her experiences include participating in the Rainier Valley Food Bank-Safeway Food Drive with Cathay Bank (2009 and 2010). She served as Team Captain for Cathay Bank, for the 20th Walk for Rice event (2010)and raised over $1,440 for ACRS. This year she is also the Team Captain for Cathay Bank for 2011 Walk for Rice event and aiming at a $2,000 fundraising goal. She enjoys eating, watching Chinese and Korean dramas with my family, and watching Cartoon Network with my brother. Yin has always wanted to take Salsa and Latin dancing classes. I will hopefully sign myself up someday!
Aimee Decker was adopted from Korea and grew up in rural Montana. She holds Bachelor’s degrees in both Biology and Fine Arts, and has spent various years of her life tracking birds of prey and teaching breakdancing to at-risk youth. She currently works as an attorney for a Seattle law firm and volunteers with the Community Abortion Information and Resources Project (CAIR Project), the King County Bar Association’s Future of the Law Institute (FLI) and the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project (NWIRP). In her spare time she enjoys cooking, ballet, cocktails, and enjoying the beautiful Seattle summertime.
James Hong is a graduate of the University of Washington, where he studied psychology, sociology, and education. He recently returned from Cambodia, where he spent two years as a United States Peace Corps Volunteer as a teacher, youth, and community developer. He currently works with a Seattle non-profit, the Vietnamese Friendship Association, where he directs after school and summer programs, and organizational development. He enjoys soccer and the outdoors.
Chanda Ishisaka was born and raised in Los Angeles, California to a Japanese father and Mexican mother. She received her B.A. at the University of California, Irvine and moved to Seattle to attend graduate school at Seattle University, where she received her Master’s in Education in Student Development Administration. She currently works at South Seattle Community College on the Asian American Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institution (AANAPISI) grant as a Financial Aid Resource Analyst to support student success and retention. With many of her ancestors being placed in the Japanese incarceration camps, she joined the Minidoka Pilgrimage Planning Committee to organize an annual trip to the former incarceration camp in Idaho. Also, she currently serves on the Board of Directors for MAVIN, a national organization that builds healthy communities that celebrate and empower mixed heritage people and families. On her free time, she enjoys being by the water, exploring the city, and writing Yelp reviews on restaurants.
Annie Kuo grew up in Texas and went to high school in Bangkok, Thailand. Her commitment to social justice is rooted in her college years in the South, where she founded the first Asian student club at her women’s college in 1996. She spent her senior year studying ethnic studies in Berkeley, and has lived on the West Coast for most of the past decade. Annie holds a master’s degree in Integrated Marketing Communications from Northwestern University. She has worked in audience development, public relations, and marketing for Portland Taiko, Edelman, and Ogilvy. She is a Young Adult Advisor to the Seattle Art Museum and a recent graduate of United Way’s Project LEAD program. Annie and her husband of 7 years, Victor, moved back to Seattle in 2011. They are expecting their first child in December.
Mary McNair is of Chinese and Scottish descent, born and raised in Issaquah, WA. She joined the Peace Corps in The Gambia (West Africa) for two years immediately following completion of her undergraduate degree at Gonzaga University. After this, Mary worked in State Government and volunteered at non profits like the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Girl Scouts of Western Washington and Seattle Tilth before going back to school. Mary recently graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in Public Administration and works for Jumpstart; a non profit organization housed on the UW campus.
Kanchana Seneviratne was born in Freetown, Sierra Leone and is of Sri Lankan heritage. Having had a unique perspective on inequality and human suffering at a young age, Kanchana has always wanted to help and fight for those that are less fortunate. Utilizing her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from the University of Washington, she now works as Community Engagement Coordinator at Rainier Valley Food Bank. In her spare time she volunteers at Angeline’s Center for Homeless Women and enjoys running, cooking, and yelping about various restaurants in Seattle.
While growing up on O’ahu in Hawai’i, Jamie 真理恵 Stroble developed a passion for community service and a great pride in her multiracial, multiethnic and multicultural background. She moved to Seattle in 2004 to complete a year of public service in Americorps and has been an active community volunteer ever since. Jamie is a recent University of Washington honors graduate, with degrees in Environmental Studies and International Studies, and minored in Diversity Studies, Geography & Environmental Science/Resource Management. She was involved in several student activist organizations, including the Mixed Student Class Project, Habitat for Humanity and Mortar Board. Jamie identifies as hapa and hates the question “What are you?”. She enjoys new adventures, culinary experiments, photography, painting, hiking & backpacking, outrigger canoe paddling and hula dancing.
Latana Thaviseth was born and raised in Des Moines, Washington and is Lao American. She currently works for the College Success Foundation as an AmeriCorps College and Career Coach. Her passions lie in providing access to higher education for low income and minority students and also preserving her Laotian heritage. Latana is one of the founding members of the Kinnaly Music and Dance Troupe, which is one of the Lao Heritage Foundation’s programs and dedicates her Sundays to teaching traditional Laotian dance. During her free time, she enjoys catching up on sports, spending time with her family and trying out new restaurants.
For years, Jo Jo Tran has been a tireless volunteer around the city for the immigrant community. He has been involved with social change, social justice, global health, and green environment. Also, he is a professional translator, photographer, interpreter, avid gardener, community builder, a trainer, campaigner, and enjoys writing.
Steve Yao was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico by Chinese parents who immigrated to the United States from the Philippines. He was raised immersed an eclectic mix of Chinese, Filipino, Hispanic, and Native American cultures. Moved to Seattle for grad school in Mechanical Engineering, he has stayed for Seattle’s rich tapestry of food, music, technology and culture. A youth member of the Chinese American Citizens Alliance, he is looking to connect and contribute with the Seattle API community. He is fascinated with racing cars, composite materials, innovation through user centered design practices, Asian Americans in the media, and giant robots. Being away from New Mexico makes Stephen miss green chile, sopapillas, and carne adovada. Stephen is the 2011 NAAAP- Seattle Community Leaders Program Scholarship recipient.