Statement from Vincent Pan, Executive Director:

“I’m pleased to announce some exciting news about Chinese for Affirmative Action.

Effective immediately, CAA will be led by a Co-Directorship between myself and Cynthia Choi, who last year served as interim director during my sabbatical, and has since stayed on to help run the organization. Previously, Cynthia was the Vice President of Philanthropic Partnerships with Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy, and she brings nearly 30 years of experience on a range of issues, including philanthropic equity, immigration, gender, race, and the environment.

Well beyond shifts in day-to-day management, this move is about strategically deepening and strengthening our work in a moment when the community and cause of civil rights demand more from CAA.

In particular, since January, our staff, board, and key partners have been working tirelessly to meet a massive increase in immediate community needs, while also developing key priorities to guide our work into the future. That process has clarified that we want to hold ourselves accountable to:

  • Strengthening and amplifying progressive Chinese voices across languages and generations;
  • Removing barriers and expanding opportunities for low-income immigrants through direct services and systemic advocacy;
  • Playing an active role in the social justice movement; and
  • Building an adaptive and sustainable organization infrastructure.

These priorities will require both of us to be fully engaged and responsible for significant and critical areas of work, and we will continue to depend on the leadership of many stakeholder groups, including our board and staff.

The need to rise to the challenge of these times was an important consideration in this leadership shift, but, in truth, we at CAA have been exploring new models of leadership for some time. I personally have come to the conclusion that a more shared, more distributed, and more empowered leadership throughout our community and organization is the best way to harness our collective strengths and talents.

Cynthia and I are incredibly energized about the future of CAA and wholly committed to its mission. It is a privilege to serve and advocate on behalf of the communities we care about. I trust you will embrace her leadership just as you have supported me over the past decade.

Together, we look forward to all that we will achieve.”