Staff

Monica Speight
Education Outreach & Field Director

Monica is SEARAC’S Education Outreach and Field director. She works to promote and support community and stakeholder involvement around SEARAC’s education work. Prior to this she helped advance the policy agenda at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF) and the Dignity in Schools Campaign (DSC), a coalition focused on ending discriminatory discipline practices that disproportionately target students of color and fuel the School-to-Prison Pipeline.

Monica holds a Bachelor of Social Work degree from Clark Atlanta University and a Masters in Organizational Development from Wilmington University. Her most recent education work focused on reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) to ensure that the bill maintains important federal oversight and accountability so that states work equitably to provide educational opportunities. Prior to her career in education, Monica worked for senior and junior members of Congress on both sides of the aisle and focused heavily on immigration issues. She has more than a decade of experience in the field of mental health services and community outreach. Monica has a passion to help amplify the voices of marginalized communities and inspire and empower them to advocate for sustainable change. 

Alyssa Tulabut
Training Manager

Alyssa leads the planning of SEARAC’s annual leadership and advocacy training programs, LAT and LEAF. She also coordinates SEARAC’s biennial Equity Summit, set to kick off in the fall of 2017.

Alyssa graduated from the University of Virginia with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. While an undergraduate, she worked as a research assistant in UVA’s Social Neuroscience Laboratory, specifically researching implicit biases and perceptions of Asian Americans. She also served on the executive councils of the Organization of Young Filipino Americans, a Filipino cultural student organization, and a student-led leadership development organization to connect students to career opportunities in the fashion industry.

Prior to SEARAC, Alyssa worked in the wedding industries in both Charlottesville and Virginia Beach. Following an event coordinator internship with Harvest Moon Catering, she spent her last year in college working in their events office. After graduating, Alyssa managed events for a wedding planning business in Virginia Beach. However, before long the desire to amplify the AAPI voice she cultivated in college and empower AAPI communities reshaped her professional goals, leading her to SEARAC.

Alyssa spent her childhood in Washington, Belgium, and Virginia before moving to Washington, D.C., to pursue this opportunity to channel her event planning skills towards advocacy.

Nkauj Iab Yang
Director of California Policy and Programs

Nkauj Iab is the Director of California Policy and Programs. She oversees SEARAC's California health, education, and immigration equity advocacy, as well as the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) young men's work. She works with various coalitions to identify and advocate for policies to support Southeast Asian American (SEAA) communities and provides training and technical assistance to community-based partners throughout California to advocate for their community's needs and demands at the local and state level.

Nkauj Iab spent the last 11 years committed to youth organizing and youth development work both in Sacramento and Oakland. Before coming to SEARAC, Nkauj Iab served as the Program Manager with Banteay Srei, overseeing programs and direct services for Southeast Asian American young women impacted by sexual exploitation. Through Banteay Srei, Nkauj Iab led a small collaborative to pass the resolution to expand and report disaggregated Asian American and Pacific Islander data at Oakland Unified School District. In the mid-2000s, Nkauj Iab was an education justice organizer with Youth Together, building the leadership of young people to fight for education equity. 

She holds a Master of Arts in Ethnic Studies from San Francisco State University and a Bachelor of Arts in Ethnic Studies from the University of California, Berkeley.