Rita Pin Ahrens, Executive Director
Rita’s passion for social justice stems from her lived experience as a Khmer-American refugee, her involvement with the International Campaign to Ban Landmines while a college student at Yale University, and her experience observing inequities as a public school teacher.
Prior to OCA, Rita oversaw research and policy projects for APIA Scholars, the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center, the Campaign for High School Equity, and the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. Throughout her career, Rita has advocated for policies that improve the social and economic well-being of underserved communities.
Outside the office, Rita’s interests include learning and performing classical Khmer dance, oil painting, drawing, gardening, and writing poetry.
Rita can be reached at email@example.com.
Ken Lee, Chief Executive Officer
Ken Lee is a former UPSer, having started as a part-time employee while he was in college. Ken retired in 2008 as the Vice President of Security for UPS’ U.S. Operations. He was the first Asian Pacific American (APA) to attain the title of Vice President, and was one of the highest ranking APAs at UPS. A leading activist for Asian community affairs at UPS, Ken served as a mentor and role model for other Asian employees, and served on UPS’s corporate diversity committee.
Ken currently is the immediate past national president of OCA, an Asian advocacy organization that UPS has had a long relationship with. Prior to being elected President, Ken served in several other OCA capacities. Additionally, Ken has served on the Diversity Advisory Council for Georgia Power, one of the nation’s largest generators of electricity and today serves on the Comcast NBC Universal Diversity Advisory Council.
Due in part to his success in his career, his active role in the OCA, and his involvement with many community organizations in the Georgia area, Ken was selected by UPS to be the recipient of the OCA National Asian Pacific American Corporate Achievement Award in 1997. Ken was also honored by "Who’s Who in Asian American Communities” 2006, Outstanding 50 Asian Americans in Business 2006 and LEAP’s Leadership Awardees in 2009.
Ken was born and raised in San Francisco, CA. Ken’s parents and grandparents emigrated from the suburbs of Guangzhou, China in the early 1900s. He now lives in Duluth, GA with Ashley and their daughter, Vincy.
Ken can be reached at KLee@ocanational.org.
Kelly Xu Tian, Manager of administration
Kelly Tian has been with OCA - Asian Pacific American Advocates for 15 years. Born and raised in Beijing, China, she moved to United States in 1996 with her husband.
Currently, Kelly resides in Columbia, Maryland with her husband and younger son, who is a sophomore at Oakland Mill High School. Her older son is re-settled nearby her home. Kelly’s daily job is to oversee the OCA financial books and office day-to-day operating. Kelly also ensures the administration of the organization's invoices, revenue processes, and Tax Auditing.
Kelly can be reached at (202) 223-5500 ext. 112 or KXTian@ocanational.org.
Andrew Lo, Senior Program manager
A Kansas City native, Andrew Lo is the Youth Programs Manager at OCA - Asian Pacific American Advocates. In his role, Andrew engages the next generation of Asian Pacific Americans by coordinating OCA's national Internship, APA Y: Advocate, and APIA U: Leadership Programs.
Prior to joining OCA, Andrew managed programs and operations for the Conference on Asian Pacific American Leadership (CAPAL) working to encourage Asian American and Pacific Islander participation in public service. Andrew double majored in Philosophy and Biology at Saint Louis University. Outside of the classroom he served as president of SLU’s Asian American Association connecting AAPI communities and working to promote social justice for all. He also help to establish Forte, an organization dedicated to providing Saint Louis schools with tutors, instruments, and other resources needed to facilitate an education in music.
Growing up in his family's restaurant fostered Andrew's love for creating and consuming food. Andrew can also be found making music, invading the privacy of others with a camera, and generally causing a ruckus.
Andrew can be reached at (202) 223-5500 ext. 115 or Alo@ocanational.org.
Thu Nguyen, Communications manager
Thu Nguyen serves OCA National as the Communications Manager. A graduate from Rice University with a degree in Chemistry and Sociology, Thu found her way into the nonprofit sector in college when OCA-Greater Houston invited her to talk about Asian American body image at their TEA Talks. Then, as the president of the Vietnamese Student Association, she partnered with OCA-GH for the VSA’s annual College Leadership Workshop for low-income high school students, fell in love with the organization, and interned there as the social media manager and college programs co-coordinator.
In her capacity, Thu produces print and digital content to keep the community updated and advance organizational objectives. Formerly a freelance content creator, she hopes to bring her artistic direction to OCA’s magazine, social media, and other platforms to push information design for social advocacy organizations.
With her spare time, she focuses on the intersection of advocacy with small businesses. She believes in utilizing the private sector to promote the nonprofit/public sector, which developed out of her experience in community organizing for a local hospitality group. You can find her exploring how to spacemake via thudawin.org.
Thu can be reached at (202) 223-5500 ext. 119 or TNguyen@ocanational.org.
lumi youm, program associate
Lumi Youm is the Program Associate at OCA - Asian Pacific American Advocates. She coordinates OCA’s professional and leadership development programs including MAAP (Mentoring Asian American Professionals), B3: Build, Breakthrough & Believe, and the AAPI Womxn’s Initiative.
Prior to her arrival in D.C., she spent large chunks of life in Seoul, South Korea, Columbus, Georgia, and Western Massachusetts. She is an alumna of Amherst College (Class of ’18 — where she majored in Asian Languages and Civilizations, delving into her deep interest in the political, cultural, and social history of Asia. Outside of the classroom, she explored diverse ways of working toward positive social change at a number of nonprofits overseas and in the U.S.
Lumi’s favorite things to do include trying new recipes, spending quality time at the gym, putting pen to quality drawing paper, getting absorbed in great books, and meeting adorable dogs.
Lumi can be reached at (202) 223-5500 ext. 114 or Lumi.Youm@ocanational.org.
KENT TONG, PROGRAM COORDINATOR FELLOW
Kent Tong is the Program Coordinator Fellow at OCA - Asian Pacific American Advocates. In his role, Kent coordinates the organization's youth and college programs, including OCA's Internship, Gold Mountain Scholarship, APA Y: Advocate, APIA U: Leadership, and COMPASS.
He was born and raised in Destrehan, Louisiana to Vietnamese refugee parents. An alumnus from Loyola University New Orleans, majoring in Studio Art and minoring in Film Studies, Kent dedicated his time outside the classroom to various Vietnamese-interest organizations. It's through his experience as Executive Director of Camp Delta and President of the Union of Vietnamese Student Associations Gulf Coast where Kent developed an interest in youth leadership and professional development.
Prior to joining OCA, Kent was a Jubilee Project Fellow during the summer of 2017 and Disney College Program Cast Member during the fall of 2014. In his free time he loves watching movies in theatres, usually one or two every weekend, and occasionally writing reviews on his personal blog.
Kent can be reached at (202) 223-5500 ext. 118 or Kent.Tong@ocanational.org.
Maddie Schumacher, Policy Associate
Maddie is a policy and community advocate on a mission to empower AAPI and other communities of color to fight for justice and hold representatives accountable. Having spent years working in the Minnesota state legislature and governor's race on education, juvenile justice, and health equity, they are well-versed in political and campaign strategy. Before that, they worked under the HHS Office of Minority Health on healthcare access campaigns and professional development in communities of color. Now as OCA's policy associate they are leading the organization's civil rights advocacy on education, immigration, racial profiling, and civic engagement.
Maddie graduated from Macalester College with a Bachelor of Arts in American Studies and Urban Studies and a minor in Environmental Studies. While at Mac, they were heavily involved in student activism around curriculum change, sexual violence prevention, and land repatriation to indigenous people. They partnered with the Asian American Organizing Project, worked at the Macalester Department of Multicultural Life, and lectured at neighboring colleges on the role of AAPI activism in Black Lives Matter. As an upperclassman, they served on hiring committees and in the college's racial equity and mental health taskforces.
In their free time, find Maddie volunteering at Cultivate the City urban farm, convincing their girlfriend to get a dog, or finding the nearest body of water.
Maddie can be reached at (202) 223-5500 ext. 116 or firstname.lastname@example.org.