About - Stand with Asian Americans

About

About Us

“We, the Asian American business leaders of America, are tired, angry and afraid — and not for the first time.

We are tired of being treated as less than American, subject to harassment and now, every day, we read about another member of our community being physically attacked — simply for being Asian. We are afraid for the safety of our loved ones. We are angry that our families can no longer go outside in their own neighborhoods where they have lived for decades because it may not be safe.

Read the Open Letter in Full
Our Mission

Stand Up. Fight Back. End Racism.

Asian Americans have been silenced — in our streets, in our universities, in our corporations, in our media. As we fight daily news of violence, hate crimes against Asians, a systemic lack of representation and under-resourced community outreach programs, Asian Americans are told that they aren’t a minority, that they don’t matter, that the status quo of being marginalized and forgotten is more than enough. We’re breaking the silence. We’re building a coalition that asks for three important things: Stand up. Fight back. End Racism.

Our Team

Stand with Asian Americans started off as a handful of entrepreneurs, investors, business leaders and activists that’s grown into what is is today.

Justin Zhu

Co-Founder, Executive Director
San Francisco, CA

Justin Zhu is an activist, entrepreneur and technologist. He is the co-founder and former CEO of Iterable, a marketing platform that powers communications to billions of people on behalf of companies including DoorDash, Zillow and Coinbase. Over his eight years as CEO, he grew the company to over 400 employees and valued the company at $2 Billion.

In response to the rise of anti-Asian violence and the Atlanta Spa Shootings which killed 8 people, 6 of whom were Asian women, Justin along with Dave Lu, Wendy Nguyen and a team of passionate volunteers launched a bold public letter to express our outrage and demand resources and systemic change needed to end the crisis of anti-Asian hate & discrimination. In just 10 days following the shootings, 1000 AAPI leaders signed the letter, standwithasianamericans.com launched with the letter translated into 13 languages and the letter was published in The Wall Street Journal. The unprecedented effort uniting the Asian American community created national awareness of anti-Asian violence and went on to gather over 8000 signatures, including from CEOs of Zoom, Alphabet, Doordash, George W. Bush, Andre Igoudala, and Katie McGrath & J.J. Abrams.

Justin now serves as the Executive Director of Stand with Asian Americans, and in 2022 he led several national mobilizations, including a 6-city rally for the first anniversary of Vicha Ratanpakdee’s passing, an 11-city rally for first anniversary of the Atlanta Spa Shootings, the 30-year anniversary of Sa-I-Gu (LA Riots) and 40-year anniversary of Vincent Chin. As Executive Director, Justin is focused on activating a grassroots movement of empowered Asian Americans backed by a strong platform to defend our community from anti-Asian violence & discrimination.

Wendy Nguyen

Co-Founder
San Francisco, CA

Wendy is a marketing executive with decades of experience working in mission-driven growth stage startups (Counsyl, Clover, Propeller). She joined SwAA’s founding team days after the shootings in Atlanta to develop the campaign behind the Enough Open Letter, line editing each sentence, designing the creative and publishing the letter to give voice to a generation of Asian Americans who can no longer remain silent as anti-Asian violence and discrimination continues to rise unabated.

She’s a passionate believer in civic engagement and in 2020 founded a nonprofit focused on voting access in important election states. At SwAA, she works closely with SwAA’s grantees to increase voter participation among the AAPI community.

Wendy currently lives in San Francisco but grew up in the large Vietnamese American community of San Jose. The experience taught her the power and generosity of community. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from UC Berkeley.

Dave Lu

Co-Founder
San Francisco Bay Area, CA

Dave Lu is a veteran in the technology industry, having worked for over two decades at big tech companies including Yahoo!, Apple, Cisco and eBay and founding two startups. In 2011, Dave created a community called Asian American Founders Circle which has grown to over 400 founders including Tony Xu (DoorDash), Steve Chen (YouTube), Kevin Lin (Twitch) and many others. AAFC inspired the launch of Hyphen Capital, a syndicate focused on investing in Asian American founders that has invested over $25 million in over 80 startups. Dave along with SwAA co-founders most recently started a movement by writing a letter condemning hate crimes against Asians which was signed by over 8,000 prominent business leaders and influencers including the CEOs of Google, LinkedIn, DoorDash, President George W. Bush and Andre Iguodala & J.J. Abrams. The letter was published as a full-page ad in the Wall Street Journal and has led to the launch of Stand with Asian Americans, a non-profit organization committed to fighting discrimination against Asian Americans. He recently produced a documentary short called “38 at the Garden” on Jeremy Lin that was acquired by HBO. Dave sits on the board of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center with a mission to build an APA museum on the National Mall. Dave received his bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and his MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Eric Kim

Co-Founder
San Francisco, CA

Eric J. Kim is Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Goodwater Capital, a multi-billion dollar venture firm and the world’s largest consumer-tech-focused investing platform. Eric has led investments into leading consumer internet companies such as Kakao (IPO – KOSDAQ:035720), Musical.ly (acquired by Bytedance / Tik Tok), Coupang (CPNG), Xendit, Viva Republica (Toss), Danggeun Market (Karrot), MoMo and Everlywell.

Prior to co-founding Goodwater, Eric was a Managing Director at Maverick Capital where he helped to build Maverick’s private investments and venture capital business. Eric was also a startup member of two technology companies spun out of Stanford University. Eric began his career as a consultant with McKinsey & Company.

Eric first learned to code as an undergrad at Yale University where he majored in Cognitive Science (Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude) and was a member of the Grammy-nominated Yale Cellos. Eric also received an MBA from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business. Eric serves on the advisory board of the Johns Hopkins Alliance for Science and Technology and on the boards of College Track and the St. Thomas More Chapel at Yale University.

Diana Suryakusuma

Co-Founder, NYC Chapter Co-Lead
New York City, NY

Diana is an award-winning Executive Producer and Visuals Director at Bloomberg Businessweek. She currently works on tv & film development and special projects and produces Hello World, an Emmy-nominated tech travel show. Since the pandemic, Diana has also become passionate about writing and championing AAPI issues for the magazine.

Diana began her career in media at TIME where she worked on photography features including Person of the Year, the TIME 100 and the coverage of the 2008 presidential campaign. At Businessweek, she has been a part of the creative team that developed the relaunched publication’s distinctive visual style. Her work has received distinctions from The News and Documentary Emmy Awards, the Webby Awards, World Press Photo, American Photography, Creative Review and Pictures of the Year International, among others.

Diana graduated from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a recipient of the Fulbright Specialist grant. In addition to working with SwAA, she currently serves on the board of KEEN New York.

Don Vu

Co-Founder, NYC Chapter Co-Lead
New York City, NY

Don Vu is a technology expert, change agent and high EQ executive leader with 20+ years driving transformation and innovation across multiple trillion dollar industries and highly complex situations (Media & Entertainment at Major League Baseball Advanced Media/ BAMTech/Disney Streaming Services, Real Estate at WeWork, Insurance & Wealth Management at Northwestern Mutual).

Don is currently the Chief Data Officer at Northwestern Mutual, the #1 life insurance carrier in the U.S., a top 5 independent broker/dealer and a Fortune 100 company. Through a central data team of 400+ and partnerships throughout the enterprise, Don drives organizational transformation and enterprise data strategy across the company’s $34B revenue and $500B+ Total AUM business (Insurance, Wealth Management, Field Distribution, Managed Investments, etc). As a transformation catalyst he has helped lead the digital transformation of NM’s underwriting business ($1.5B+ new business in 2021) using AI and automation.

Don has a unique perspective on industry transformation having worked at both incumbents disrupting an industry from within as well as high growth, digital native challengers. As the top data leader at MLB, WeWork, and Northwestern Mutual, Don has led data-driven business strategies that have resulted in hundreds of millions of dollars in incremental revenue. He has driven corporate innovation through both venture efforts and academic partnerships throughout his career.

Don is a D&I champion who has helped guide enterprise resource groups at both MLB and Northwestern Mutual. He is also a founding member of Stand with Asian Americans, a national organization of business leaders that was formed in 2021 and raised over $1.7M in 7 months for non-profits.

Jay Cho

Political Advocacy Lead
Washington D.C.

Jay Cho is currently Director of U.S. Federal Government Relations, Commercial Lead at VMware. In this role, he leads VMware’s private sector advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill and Administration.

He previously worked for Verizon, most recently in their Corporate Strategy Department where he focused on international business development in 5G multi-access edge computing (MEC). Jay started at Verizon as a lobbyist where he advocated on a range of issues including cybersecurity, data privacy, and broadband access, adoption, and affordability.

Prior to Verizon, Jay worked for Congresswoman Robin L. Kelly where he handled her work as the Ranking Member of the IT Subcommittee on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and co-chair of the Congressional Diversifying Tech Caucus (now the Tech Accountability Caucus). His legislative portfolio included cybersecurity, tech, telecom, economic development, and education policy issues. During his time on Capitol Hill, Jay co-founded the Congressional Tech Staff Association to help policymakers and their staff learn about emerging technologies.

Outside of work, Jay is passionate about emerging technologies and uplifting AAPI voices in politics, business, and media. Merging these interests, Jay serves as Senior Advisor at SeedAI, a nonprofit that is working to ensure that all communities – particularly historically disinvested communities – can engage in artificial intelligence ecosystems. In this role, he advises SeedAI on long-term strategic planning and short- term plan execution. Jay previously served on the board of Korean Americans for Organizing Fund, a political action committee focused on supporting Korean American political candidates.

In his spare time, Jay enjoys longboarding, singing too loud at karaoke, and cooking overly ambitious meals for his girlfriend and dog.
Jay received his BA in Political Science from American University in Washington, D.C.

Joy Fan

NYC Chapter Leader
New York City, NY

Joy Fan is a 2x founder, operator, and urbanist — democratizing access to affordable real estate through her company http://retell.co — building the future of neighborhood retail. She is known for popularizing “popups” globally as the founding member of Storefront (the largest marketplace of short-term retail), is an active committee advisor for Women in Proptech and a part of Mayor Eric Adam’s NYC Small Business Advisory Commission.

Joon Lee

NYC Chapter Leader
New York City, NY

Joon is an accomplished marketing executive with a wealth of experience in the dynamic world of technology and consumer brands. Joon most recently worked at Pinterest, where he played a key role in the launch of the company’s B2B campaigns. Also at Pinterest, he served as a lead the Company’s ERG for staff of Asian heritage. Prior to his time at Pinterest, Joon worked on projects for a number of high-caliber companies such as Meta, Google, Tumi, L’Oréal and Nike. Joon earned his bachelor’s degree in International Relations at the London School of Economics, and his master’s at the Annenberg School at USC. Joon currently resides in New York City, which has been his home since 2014.

Michelle Lee

Counsel
New York City Area, NY

Michelle Lee is a volunteer with SwAA with a focus on supporting the Workplace Justice Initiative. Michelle most recently served as the General Counsel – Investments at Portfolio Advisors, a private investments firm with over $40 billion in assets under management during her nearly 15 year tenure. Prior to her role with Portfolio Advisors, she worked at Latham & Watkins as a corporate attorney. She graduated from Yale University and earned her law degree from Yale Law School. She is currently based in the New York area.

Charles Joseph Montesa

Social Media & Comms Lead
Monterey County, California

Charles comes from the grassroots nonprofit and community building space. He’s supported a range of causes including digital inclusion, education equity, housing and veterans. He co-founded a community nonprofit in Monterey County (which lies just south of Silicon Valley) mobilizing his community around local issues through volunteerism and community engagement. He also serves as the Interim State Director of Make Us Visible CA, a state chapter of the nationwide coalition of parents, teachers and students advocating for the inclusion of AAPI history and experiences in the K-12 classrooms. At SwAA, he’s the social media lead.

Charles graduated from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey where earned his MPA, focused on international development and social change management and leadership. A proud second-generation Filipino American, he is in on a journey to reconnect with his heritage through food, music and language. His experiences living and traveling in Southeast Asia instilled a strong pride in his Southeast Asian roots and shaped his own identity as an Asian American. He believes that as a community healing starts at the roots of our heritages, and it is at his roots that lies his motivation to do the work he does in support of the AAPI community.

Sean Nguyen

Operations Lead
San Francisco

Sean Nguyen (he/him) is an organizer, entrepreneur, and fundraiser who currently serves as the Operations Lead for Stand with Asian Americans. He is the co-founder of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Asian American Center, the first academic center of its kind in the American South.

Previously, Sean worked in chief of staff and policy roles for VC-backed startups, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and the U.S. House Judiciary Committee. He currently serves on the Morehead-Cain Global Advisory Council and UNC Young Alumni Leadership Council. Sean is also a frequent advisor to San Diego and North Carolina-based AAPI nonprofits.

As the Operations Lead for Stand with Asian Americans, Sean is responsible for scaling up national efforts, building out the political advocacy arm, and launching new chapters across the country.

Eugena Oh

NYC Chapter Leader
New York City, NY

Eugena Oh serves as the Regional Director, Greater NYC Area, at The Asian American Foundation, the national organization fundamentally transforming the future for AAPIs across all sectors. TAAF is dedicated to building a safer, more inclusive future for AAPIs. Through TAAF’s core pillars of anti-hate, education, narrative change and unlocking resources, we are mobilizing against hate, cultivating empathy, and reclaiming our narratives.

Eugena comes to TAAF after serving as President & CEO of the “I Have A Dream” Foundation, a national nonprofit empowering youth to achieve their dreams through education and mentorship. She believes deeply in racial justice and equity and has devoted her career to extending opportunity to historically marginalized communities, by building coalitions to build power. Over eleven years at “I Have A Dream,” Eugena focused on unifying its federated affiliates around a shared vision and goal for “multiple pathways to success” for its youth (‘Dreamers’). Prior to “I Have A Dream”, Eugena practiced law, and served in fundraising and program roles within several non-profit organizations, including Teach For America.

Eugena’s honors include receiving the Trailblazer award from both the Korean American Lawyers Association of Greater New York (2019) and the IvyG Conference (2018), being named to New York Non-Profit Media’s inaugural class of 40 Under 40 Rising Stars (2015) and receiving the University of Pennsylvania’s Asian Alumni Association’s Outstanding Alumna Award (2008). She serves as a volunteer leader with Stand with Asian American (NYC Chapter), on the University of Pennsylvania’s Alumni Board of Directors, Penn’s Pan-Asian American Community House Board of Advisors, Rise First’s Board of Advisors, as well as the “I Have A Dream” Foundation’s Board of Directors.

Eugena is an alumna of the University of Pennsylvania, Temple University’s Beasley School of Law, and Columbia Business School’s Senior Leaders in Nonprofit Executive program. She is a proud New Yorker and second generation Korean American currently raising two children with her partner on Long Island. Eugena loves to dance to 90s hip-hop, sing power ballads during karaoke, and read just about anything.

Brian Pang

Partnerships & Strategy Advisor
Vancouver, BC

Brian Pang (he/him) is a Product Development Director at Electronic Arts (EA), leading Inclusive Product and Player Experience strategy. Throughout his 19 year tenure with EA, Brian has led studio and brand teams to deliver 40+ AAA game titles across popular franchises such as FIFA, Madden, NBA, NHL, UFC, Star Wars, Need for Speed, Battlefield, Apex Legends, and more, while centering authentic, relatable, accessible, and inclusive player experiences. Through this work, Brian is dedicated to driving equity and uplifting all underrepresented talent, stories, content, art, and audio, across interactive entertainment and media spaces.

Brian also serves as a lead, board member, or advisor for several organizations, centered on advancing the Asian American equity and justice movements. Through his work with Stand with Asian Americans, Asian Justice Movement, Asian Leaders Alliance, ACE NextGen, APAs vs Hate, Elimin8hate, and Ascend Leadership, Brian is devoted to advocacy for marginalized communities, for-justice initiatives, systemic improvements to ensure diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging permeate through all domains and facets of society.

Brian has been honored by the 2022 Asian Hustle Network Top 50 Unsung Heroes, and 2022 Ascend Vancouver MVP awards for his efforts in these spaces.

Brian was born and raised in Hong Kong, then immigrated to Canada at the age of 16. He currently resides on the unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.

Franklin Shen

NYC Chapter Leader

Jack Song

Brand & Comms Advisor
San Francisco, CA

Jack S. Song has been a brand and communications executive for over two decades. He has designed and executed integrated marketing campaigns for over 150 commercial and independent feature films.

He specializes in startup business operations and brand strategy– scaling companies and go-to-market campaigns. For the past decade, he has designed and built a global brand and communications function for several VC-backed international startups, taking LimeGrabangoVisby Medical, and Hashdex to market.

Jack was previously the deputy political director for the California Democratic Party and was later appointed as press secretary for San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera, where he led the public relations strategy for several high-profile legal cases, including the fight for marriage equality.

Jack holds an MBA from the Haas School of Business, with an emphasis in brand management. He currently resides in District 5 with his husband, Gregory Flores, longtime assistant district attorney for the City & County of San Francisco.

Delbert Tran

San Francisco Chapter Co-Lead
San Francisco, CA

Delbert Tran is a Deputy Attorney General for the State of California, where he serves in the California Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Enforcement Section. He is one of the lead attorneys defending against legal challenges to SB 826 and AB 979—California’s laws requiring its publicly held corporations to include underrepresented minorities on their boards of directors, including Asian Americans. He is also a co-author of California’s report on reparations, a first-in-the-nation statewide effort to study and propose reparations for slavery.

Delbert graduated from Yale Law School, where he served as a student co-director of the Media Freedom and Information Access Clinic and on the Yale chapter board of the International Refugee Assistance Project. He received his bachelor’s degrees in English Literature and Government from Georgetown University, where he wrote his undergraduate thesis about Asian American time travel narratives. Delbert is the son of Vietnamese refugees and was born and raised in San Jose, California. He currently lives in San Francisco.

Kimberly Xie

San Francisco Chapter Co-Lead
San Francisco

Kimberly Xie is the Manager of Map Operations at Woven by Toyota, she leads a dedicated team in planning and creating maps for self-driving cars, contributing to the advancement of the autonomous vehicle industry. With over a decade of experience in the tech industry, Kimberly led teams at both startups and Google alike.

Born and raised in Rosemead, California, Kimberly embraces her cultural heritage as a first-generation Chinese American. Her multicultural upbringing has shaped her global mindset and fostered her ability to collaborate effectively with diverse teams. Currently residing in San Francisco, Kimberly is an active participant in the Asian American community.

Chapters

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Our fight is not without help. We partner with amazing organizations to get our events off the ground.

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