As SEARAC’s first ever Chief Operating Officer, Katrina provides strategic management and oversight of the organization’s infrastructure, which includes finance and grants administration, human resources, and operations to ensure that SEARAC has the capacity to achieve its mission. Katrina started out as SEARAC’s immigration policy manager, where she advocated to keep Southeast Asian American families safe from deportation. She has appeared in a number of publications including, NBC News, AJ+, Huffington Post, Public Radio International, NPR, and the Nation, expanding SEARAC’s immigration policy and mass incarceration work to reach broader audiences. Following this role, Katrina served in various leadership positions in SEARAC, including Director of National Policy, Deputy Director of Policy and Field, and Acting Executive Director.
Before coming to SEARAC, Katrina worked in the labor movement for six years at the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO). In 2011, she was elected to serve as DC chapter president of the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA), the only national Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) union membership organization. In this capacity, she led the chapter’s local advocacy campaigns and organizing work around immigrant workers’ rights, coordinated civic engagement programs for the 2012 elections, and strengthened local networks through extensive coalition building efforts. She also served on APALA’s National Executive Board and co-chaired the organization’s Young Leaders Council.
Katrina holds a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Maryland, College Park, where she also served as graduate coordinator at the Office of Multicultural Involvement and Community Advocacy to advise, mentor, and educate AAPI students on campus. She received her bachelor’s degree from Ateneo de Manila University in the Philippines. In her free time, Katrina enjoys spending time with her daughter and husband, binge-watching true crime series on Netflix, reading dystopian fiction, swimming, and watching Broadway musicals.