SEARAC Applauds the Appointment of Two SEAA Commissioners to WHIAANHPI

For Immediate Release:
January 3, 2022

Media contact:
Jenna McDavid
Communications and Development Manager

Washington, DC – On Dec. 20, President Biden announced the appointment of 22 Commissioners who will serve the newly relaunched White House Initiative on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (WHIAANHPI). These Commissioners will be responsible for advising the President on ways the public, private, and non-profit sectors can work together to advance equity and opportunity for AANHPI communities.

SEARAC is thrilled to see two powerful Southeast Asian American women named to this list: 

KaYing Yang: For more than three decades, KaYing has been a social justice advocate who has built and led community organizing, public policy engagement, and development efforts locally, nationally, and globally. She began her career as a community organizer and executive manager providing social services and advocacy for the protection of refugees and immigrants in Minnesota at the Women’s Association of Hmong and Lao. She then went on to defend and promote immigrant and human rights by serving in a number of organizations including the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center, the International Organization for Migration, the International Finance Corporation, and the Coalition of Asian American Leaders in Minnesota. All of her work comes from a deep experience having come to the United States as a Hmong refugee at the age of seven in 1976 where she experienced firsthand the struggles faced by communities experiencing generational trauma and poverty.

Victoria Huynh: Victoria Huynh is currently the Senior Vice President of the Center for Pan Asian Community Services, Inc. (CPACS), the largest nonprofit in the Southeast to focus on issues and concerns of AANHPI communities, especially women, children, and families. For more than a decade, Huynh has advocated for equitable language access, promoted local civic engagement, protected immigrant rights, championed cultural competency, and developed vital social service programs within the immigrant and refugee communities in Atlanta, Georgia. Mrs. Huynh’s experiences in her limited English proficient (LEP) Vietnamese Refugee household, fuels her passion for community building, strategic planning, and policy work within immigrant and refugee spaces. She is an MBA candidate and currently serves as consultant, board member, and panelist on various boards influencing state and local funding, nominations, and programs that impact communities of color. 

KaYing and Victoria have deep connections to SEARAC: KaYing served as our Executive Director, and Victoria is an alumna of our Leadership and Advocacy Training (LAT) Program. We look forward to working with both of them and all of the members of WHIAANHPI to ensure that the needs of Southeast Asian Americans are recognized, uplifted, and addressed in their important work.