Seema has nearly 20 years of experience working in the community development and immigrant rights sectors, focused primarily on the challenges of providing housing, economic opportunity, and support systems for new immigrants. She is a founder and former Executive Director of Chhaya CDC, a member of National CAPACD that works with New Yorkers of South Asian origin to advocate for and build economically stable, sustainable, and thriving communities. Chhaya CDC reaches thousands of new immigrants each year through its organizing, education, and service work. She was formerly the Coordinating Consultant to the Fund for New Citizens at The New York Community Trust, where she managed a donor collaborative of more than 20 foundations supporting immigrant rights work in New York City. Seema also served as the Director of Training and Technical Assistance at Citizens Committee for NYC, developing the core training curriculum and implementation of a capacity building program to support volunteer-run organizations addressing poverty and hunger. She began her work in New York City with Asian Americans for Equality where she stayed for eight years, initially as a project manager developing affordable housing, and later in other roles including fundraising, communications, and coordinating the Lower Manhattan Health Care Coalition. Her parents emigrated from India in the mid-sixties to Chicago where she was raised and earned a Masters in Urban Planning and Public Policy.
Nahida is originally from NYC, where she worked for several years as a Community Organizer at Chhaya CDC. Chhaya CDC is a member of National CAPACD that works with New Yorkers of South Asian origin to advocate for and build economically stable, sustainable, and thriving communities. Nahida's commitment to serve AAPI communities stems from her own experiences growing up in a working class Bangladeshi Muslim community in Brooklyn. She has a BA in History & International Studies from Fordham University and an MA in South Asian Studies from Columbia University.
Originally from Houston, Texas, Kelley worked in her hometown for over five years at the Chinese Community Center, promoting important issues that were key to the Asian community there. As a 3.5 generation Chinese-American, she was first exposed to AAPI issues while studying for her Bachelors in Social Work at The University of Texas. Impassioned to learn more about advocating for her community, she completed her Master of Social Work degree at Washington University in St. Louis. Kelley is passionate about advocacy, giving back to her community and volunteering - in her spare time, she runs for causes that are close to her heart, and has been a Big Sister through the Big Sisters Big Brothers program for over five years.
Anjan joins National CAPACD from CAAAV: Organizing Asian communities in New York City, where as Lead Organizer, they organized Asian immigrant communities in public housing and fought for a resident- led rezoning of Chinatown. Prior to CAAAV, Anjan served as the Lead Organizer at Chhaya CDC, where they worked with South Asian tenants and homeowners facing foreclosure. In addition to organizing around housing and economic justice, Anjan has advocated for LGBTQ rights, including winning two same sex marriage campaigns in Minnesota, and serving on the Board of Directors for the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance. Anjan began their career at South Asian Americans Leading Together, where they conducted outreach to South Asians in Maryland after the 2008 recession. When not organizing, Anjan can be found cooking, practicing meditation, and studying ayurvedic medicine.
Before joining National CAPACD, Brian was developing and conducting research at Florida State University on antiracism and undoing racism within academia. Brian received his Bachelor of Social Work at the University of Central Florida and his Master of Social Work at Smith College, where he fortified his pedagogy and frameworks to center community, intersectionality, antiracism, and equity. Brian works as an advocate, educator, and researcher utilizing his lived experience as a first-generation queer Person of Color, education, and training to inform the work being done. In his free time, he is with his dog, Pancake, practicing different forms of mindfulness and somatic healing, and finding new hobbies to test.
Naomi joins National CAPACD with a background in politics, social policy research and analysis, research dissemination, and communications. Prior to National CAPACD, Naomi focused on qualitative and quantitative research regarding racial equity, systemic barriers to communities of color, and racial & ethnic wealth disparities in the United States. Naomi previously worked at the Massachusetts State Senate and Institute on Assets and Social Policy. She holds a BA in Political Science with a Concentration in Public Policy from Boston University and an MPP with a Concentration in Poverty Alleviation from the Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University.
Josh has more than 20 years of experience working in the nonprofit sector, including over a decade at the Little Tokyo Service Center in Los Angeles, one of National CAPACD’s founding member organizations. Born and raised in the Bay Area, he has never lived outside of California. Josh has a joint JD and Masters in Urban Planning from UCLA.
Joyce has over 15 years of experience working with Asian Pacific Islander community development organizations, including for several National CAPACD members in New York, California, and Washington. Most recently, Joyce worked with Seattle Chinatown International District Preservation and Development Authority as the Director of IDEA Space – an economic development resource and design center. Her previous experiences have ranged from fund development and grants management, to advocacy and community organizing, to establishing and growing programs that build local leadership capacity. Joyce is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley’s Masters in Social Welfare program.
Jennet is originally from Rhode Island. She worked at the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC) in Washington DC, first as the Women’s Leadership Advocate before transitioning to Director of Operations and Resource Development. As Director of Operations and Resource Development, Jennet directed financial operations, coordinated fundraising activities, and created internal organizational infrastructure. During graduate school, she interned with PATH, an international health nonprofit, in Cambodia. She was also a graduate extern with the Office of Leadership and Organization Development at Mayo Clinic in Minnesota. She has a BA from Brown University and an MBA from the Yale School of Management.
Brian began his career with National CAPACD as a Program Assistant in 2016 supporting the Economic Empowerment department’s grantmaking, research and program evaluation activities. Prior to joining National CAPACD, Brian interned for AAPI advocacy and community based organizations, federal and congressional offices and think tanks. As the son of Korean immigrants raised in Southern California, Brian draws inspiration for social justice work from his cultural heritage and background. Brian earned his BA in International Relations & Asian Studies from American University.
Rosalyn Epstein previously managed a Bay Area county level asset-building network with nearly 50 member organizations. In leading the network, she built member advocacy capability while supporting peer learning and skill development among the member organizations. She also served as a CITC Policy Fellow with National CAPACD in 2015.
During her career, Rosalyn has developed and managed asset-building programs for youth and adults which include financial education, financial coaching, tax preparation, and managing a VITA tax preparation site. Previously, Rosalyn worked in the youth development and sexual and reproductive health education sectors. She has a B.A. in Women’s Studies from Smith College and an MSW from the University of California, Berkeley.
In her role, Sabrina works behind the scenes in building out National CAPACD's internal systems and human resources. She demonstrates her commitment to social justice and racial equity through her previous work at UC Berkeley’s Asian Pacific American Student Development Office, where she worked on program management and student advising and at Juma Ventures, providing college access, financial literacy and workforce development to low-income youth. Sabrina was born and raised in the Bay Area and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a BA in Sociology and a BA in Asian American and Asian Diaspora Studies.
Ryan's experience and aspirations stem from a variety of different internships while he was in college, ranging from Berkeley City Council to Empowering Pacific Islander Communities in Los Angeles. He has also gained experience working at UC Berkeley's bridges Multicultural Resource Center, providing college access to youth of color as well as advocating for educational equity. Ryan was born and raised in Garden Grove, California and graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a BA in Ethnic Studies and a BA in Political Science.
Born in San Francisco Chinatown and raised in Oakland, Roy brings over 20 years of nonprofit experience to National CAPACD. Most recently, he was the Community Planning Manager at Chinatown Community Development Center in San Francisco, and before that, he was the Co-Executive Director at the Oakland Asian Cultural Center. He has also worked in community development organizations in both New York and Los Angeles. Roy holds a BA in Architecture from UC Berkeley and a Masters in Urban Planning from UCLA. Currently, he serves on the Cultural Affairs Commission for the City of Oakland.
Christine was born and raised in San Jose, CA. Before joining National CAPACD, Christine worked as a housing case worker for the Silicon Valley Independent Living Center, where she assisted people with disabilities in securing affordable housing. In college, her interests in housing justice, poverty alleviation, and racial equity guided her in pursuing internships with the Coalition on Homelessness, Housing Rights Committee, and Densho. Christine received her BA in Urban Studies from the University of California, Berkeley.