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2023 Washington Leadership Program Session V: AANHPI Media Representation & Public Service

July 12, 2023 @ 5:30 pm - 8:00 pm

This session will feature AANHPI professionals working in the media and advocacy space. Topics of discussion include how to bridge media/communications with advocacy and public service, the importance and impact of AANHPI representation in media and the creative fields, as well as means to use media as tools of empowerment.


Sojin Kim | Curator, Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage

Sojin Kim is a curator at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage. Her work spans festival programs, exhibitions, workshops, as well as research and documentation projects, primarily engaging communities in Washington, DC; Southern California; and Asian Americans in multiple regions.





Naomi Tacuyan Underwood | Executive Director, Asian American Journalists Association

Naomi Tacuyan Underwood is the Executive Director of the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA), is a Filipina immigrant from Guam with nearly two decades of experience in civic engagement, coalition building, and empowering AAPI communities.







Moana McAdams | Founder, Moana Nui Podcast; Creator/Writer, Burning Spear LLC

Moana McAdams is an award-winning Hawaii-born leader and author who uses the power of storytelling to nurture curious minds and inspire cultural self-awareness. She made her writing debut with “Aftermath” for the Amazon best-seller, “Set Apart and Chosen,” and now uses her talents to cultivate and write children’s books. Her published works, “Fishing Day with Papa Ray” and “Shadows of the Ancient,” captures the joy of adolescence while uplifting Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander cultures.

With a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Hawai’i at Manoa and a Master of Science in Information Technology from the University of Maryland, Moana combines both her creative and analytical expertise to not only produce compelling stories but makes her invaluable and adaptable in the changing landscape of literature.

Along with being a writer and author, Moana heads the podcast, Moana Nui Podcast, which spotlights BIPOC creatives and provides a safe space for BIPOC voices. The Moana Nui Podcast has acquired sponsorships from corporate sponsors such as Kimberly-Clark and has partnered with the Center for Asian Pacific American Women (CAPAW), the premier organization developing AANHPI women leaders.

The Moana Nui Podcast delivers a variety of segments that include career and professional development topics, mental health and wellness, representation in media and pop culture, and uplifting BIPOC voices in all spaces.


Devina Khanna | Economic Policy Adviser, U.S. House of Representatives and Political Contributor, Brown Girl Magazine

Devina Khanna (she/her) is the Economic Policy Adviser to Congressman Stephen F. Lynch. She drives the financial services portfolio and economic initiatives. Prior to this role, Devina was the Policy Manager at a non-profit organization dedicated to financial health and a Financial Analyst at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Devina has a strong passion for financial inclusion and technology. Alongside her policy work, she moonlights as a Political Contributor to Brown Girl Magazine where she drives political engagement initiatives.





Shawna Chen | Reporter, Axios and Editor-in-chief, The Yappie

Shawna Chen is a reporter at Axios whose work focuses on race and justice, and the editor-in-chief of The Yappie, a volunteer-run outlet that tracks AAPI politics and power. She has led Axios’ coverage of the anti-Asian hate crisis and reported on a broad range of topics, including Asian Americans’ fight for political visibility, efforts to engage voters of color and the Dobbs decision’s impact on Black and Indigenous people. She currently co-authors Axios’ San Francisco newsletter and edits The Yappie’s weekly briefing.


More About The Washington Leadership Program

The Washington Leadership Program (WLP) provides a space for young AANHPI students interning in Washington, D.C. to come together, build community, and explore their heritage within the context of public service. Through six sessions over the summer, WLP introduces students to AANHPI public service leaders who can inform and inspire students’ own civic engagement.

The Conference on Asian Pacific American Leadership (CAPAL) seeks to empower Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) youth by increasing access to public service opportunities and building a strong AANHPI public service pipeline. We envisions a future with equitable AANHPI representation throughout all levels of government and public service.

By registering for CAPAL’s Washington Leadership Program, you give permission to be recorded or photographed during the session. Food provided at this event may contain nuts, dairy, gluten, and other allergens. Vegetarian options will be available. We ask for all guests to follow our mask-required policy and masks will be provided to those without one. If you do not agree, we look forward to your virtual attendance.




July 12, 2023
5:30 pm - 8:00 pm
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Conference on Asian Pacific American Leadership (CAPAL)