OUR APIA U: LEADERSHIP TRAINING FACILITATORS 2012 -2013
Jason is the Coordinator for Student Retention & Academic Success in the Department of Student Diversity & Multicultural Affairs at Loyola University Chicago, where he oversees the S.T.A.R.S. (Students Together Are Reaching Success) program, a peer mentorship program for first-year students of color and first-generation college students. In addition, he supports the office’s various diversity and social justice initiatives, including an alternative break immersion trip to the Deep South that examines the civil rights movements of the 1960s and present-day.Prior to Loyola, Jason served as the Director of Scholar & Alumni Programs at the Asian & Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund (APIASF), where he advised scholarship recipients across the country and oversaw a portfolio of academic support, leadership development, and community outreach programs. Jason has also advised student organizations and campus leaders at the University of Maryland-College Park, and served as an AmeriCorps volunteer and staff member at City Year, a national non-profit community service organization.Jason has served as an APIA U: Leadership 101 facilitator for five years. He has an M. Ed. in College Student Personnel from the University of Maryland-College Park, and a B.A. in Psychology and Biological Basis of Behavior from the University of Pennsylvania.
Mary Dynne Montante
Mary Dynne comes to us from her home state of Michigan, having provided program management consultation over our APIA-U Program before joining on staff at OCA National Center. She has earned a B.S. in Accounting from Madonna University and an M.A. in Social Justice from Marygrove College. As a strong advocate, she has many interests in a variety of social justice issues, her interests include issues that strengthens marginalized APA individuals and families. Her past advocacy portfolio includes community based health and wellness programming and creating broader awareness for individual and societal injustices of human trafficking. Mary Dynne is an active member of the Filipino American community. As a founding officer of the Filipino American Sports Association of Michigan, she received the Presidential Leadership Award in 2007. In her spare time, she continues to make a difference through volunteerism to advance equity and equality for all APAs.
Ben de Guzman
Ben de Guzman is a sought after speaker and trainer on a range of issues, including: political and civic engagement, advocacy, community organizing and civil rights policy and issues. He is currently the Co-Director for Programs at the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance, an emerging network of Asian American and Pacific Islander lesbian/ gay/ bisexual/ transgender community organizations around the country. Among his duties there include overseeing programs and initiatives for the organization, managing External Affairs relationships with national allies and partners, and directing policy and advocacy work. He has also been National Campaign Coordinator for the National Alliance for Filipino Veterans Equity (NAFVE). In this capacity, he oversees all phases of the recently successful legislative campaign for U.S. military recognition and financial support for Filipinos who fought under the United States during World War II. He also serves as the Policy Director for Kaya: Filipino Americans for Progress, a progressive political organization serving Filipino American communities.He has run local, state and national community leadership and education programs for leading Asian Pacific American organizations, including Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics, Inc. (LEAP), and what is now the Asian American Justice Center (formerly the National Asian Pacific American Legal Consortium).Ben is active in a variety of political campaigns and organizations serving Asian Pacific American and Filipino American communities. In 2008, he was a key member of the DC chapter of Filipinos for Obama and in 2006, he helped manage the policy and communications team for the Underwood/ Aguon campaign for the governor’s office of Guam. He has held leadership positions in locally based organizations in both Washington, DC and Los Angeles, including: AQUA (Asian Pacific Islander Queers United for Action), Pride & Heritage LGBT API Awards- Washington, DC, Filipino American Youth Dialogue, Asian Pacific Americans for Progress and Asian Pacific Islanders for Fair Immigration Reform.
Ankita is the Assistant Director in the Student Activities and Leadership at Stanford University, where she advises community service organizations, ethnic/cultural organizations, and campus publications. Previously, Ankita worked at Santa Clara University where she taught and re-developed the curriculum for a freshman leadership course based on the Social Change Model of Leadership. Ankita earned a BS in Child Development and a Spanish minor from Vanderbilt University (TN). She also earned a MA in Higher Education and Student Affairs from Ohio State University. Her professional interests include diversity and social justice training, leadership education, gender empowerment, and interfaith discussion and dialogue. Ankita is active in South Asians for Opportunity and South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT).
Mona Bormet serves as
Project Manager for Policy/Advocacy for Christian Connections for International
Health (CCIH) focused on family planning, reproductive health, HIV/AIDS, and
WASH issues. Mona organizes and implements CCIH’s annual conference and
advocacy day, in addition to hill briefings and CCIH’s involvement in global health
coalitions. Previously, Mona served as Advocacy Program Specialist for the
Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum, where she focused on
national policy efforts to improve data collection and analysis for Asian
American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander populations, efforts to collect
and share individual’s health care stories in the policy arena, and facilitated
advocacy trainings. She also served as a Health Policy Fellow for Congresswoman
Lois Capps of California and as an intern with the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention. Mona earned
her MPH from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, where she
served as Student Senate President. Mona has a heart for outreach and can be
often found volunteering with the Arlington Food Assistance Center and since
2009 facilitating interactive college leadership trainings through OCA - Asian Pacific American Advocates APIA-U
program. Mona’s love of people, culture and food extends from her roots of
growing up Korean-American in the suburbs of Chicago to the many people she is
fortunate to meet and learn from.
Yoojin Janice Lee
Yoojin Janice Lee has fourteen years of leadership, social justice and community building experience. As a consultant, she offers training and coaching on leadership development for social change, building healthy teams and community organizing. She was formerly Executive Director & Lead Organizer of the Boston-area Youth Organizing Project, where she worked in partnership with low-income youth from communities of color and immigrant communities to gain justice in their schools and neighborhoods. She also worked at Call to Renewal, a national coalition of churches working to overcome poverty and was a Coro Fellow in Public Affairs in New York City. She holds a Master's in Public Policy from Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government and graduated from Smith College, where she was student government president. Born in Pusan, Korea, she grew up in northern New Jersey and Queens, NY. For the last eight years, has made her home in the Boston-area, where she is part of the Cambridge Community Fellowship Church and worships with an Episcopalian monastic community. Yoojin loves nature, running, and reading, is a growing photographer/visual artist, and joyfully talks to strangers.
Kēhaulani Natsuko Vaughn is a visiting lecturer in Asian American Studies at Pitzer College. She is a current doctoral candidate in Ethnic Studies at the University of California at Riverside. Her educational background includes graduate degrees from UCLA in Education, Asian American and Indigenous Studies. Her current research explores Pacific Island Studies, Indigenous education, and decolonial practices and pedagogies. Her publications include: “The Possibilities of Pacific Islander Studies in the Continental United States,” and “Asserting Kuleana: Native Hawaiian Expressions of Self-Determination.”
Before returning for her doctorate, Kēhaulani worked professionally at UCLA as an Academic Advisor for undergraduate and graduate students and also coordinated a federally-funded Student Support Services Trio program. She has been involved with educational access, outreach, and retention over the past several years both professionally and voluntarily amongst underrepresented students and families. She is a nationally recognized speaker on higher education and Pacific Islander education issues and consults for numerous organizations including OCA and the Gates Millennium Scholarship Fund. She is also a co-founder and current board member of Empowering Pacific Islander Communities (EPIC) based in Southern California. EPIC is a nationally recognized advocacy organization for Pacific Islanders and works to empower the community through research, advocacy and education.
Douglas Lee serves as the Assistant Director for the Asian American Center at Northeastern University in Boston, MA. He oversees the mentoring program, Asian American Heritage Week, and several initiatives to increase the visibility and involvement of the Asian American community on campus. He also works with several multicultural efforts to empower and engage students of color on campus.
Prior to Northeastern, Douglas worked as a graduate assistant working with Asian Pacific American students in the Multicultural Involvement and Community Advocacy (MICA) office at the University of Maryland. He also worked at NASPA - Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education as a graduate assistant and the Office of Student Conduct. After graduating from the University of Virginia, Douglas worked for four years at OCA helping to oversee the high school and college student programs. He helped to provide structure to the APIA U Leadership 101 and OCA summer internship program as well as assisted in the maintenance of the OCA National Center and Convention. He is also a proud OCA Summer Intern alum (Summer 2004) and APIA U Leadership 101 alum.
Douglas has a Master’s degree from the University of Maryland in Counseling and Personnel Services and wrote his thesis on the relationship between collective racial esteem and leadership self-efficacy among Asian American college students. He received his bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering and minored in Asian Pacific American studies from the University of Virginia.
Suresh Mudragada is an Assistant Director of Campus Programs at Macalester College. He advises the Program Board, which is responsible for much of the social, cultural, and educational programming on campus. He also works with Orientation Leader recruitment/training, Transfer Orientation, and student involvement through Campus Life initiatives. He collaborates with the Department of Multicultural Life as co-facilitator for the Queer People of Color identity collective and the Civic Engagement Center with the Lives of Commitment service program. Prior to starting at Macalester in 2011, Suresh served as the graduate advisor of the Program Board at Loyola University Chicago. He also interned at International House at the University of Chicago, IES Abroad, and the Center for Experiential Learning at Loyola University Chicago. He is passionate about student involvement and truly believes in its ability to provide opportunities for personal growth that have long lasting impacts. He is also on the Asian Pacific American Network Leadership Team in ACPA.Suresh has a master’s degree in Higher Education Administration from Loyola University Chicago, and bachelor's degrees in International Business and Finance from Auburn University.