2022 Keynote Speaker
Keynote Speaker – Sefa Aina
Sefa Aina is currently the Associate Dean and Director of the Draper Center for Community Partnerships at Pomona College. Professionally, he has served as an academic and student- organizational advisor, as well as an instructor for Asian American Studies programs at UCLA and California State University, Fullerton. Sefa has taught courses in contemporary Pacific Islander issues, community engagement, and has done countless workshops and talks at colleges and universities throughout the country. In the community, Sefa is a founding member and current board chair of EPIC (Empowering Pacific Islander Communities); board member of APIA (Asian Pacific Islander American) Scholars; and board member for the APAHE (Asian Pacific Americans in Higher Education). Sefa is also a founding member of NPIEN (National Pacific Islander Educators Network) and the UCLA PIER (Pacific Islander Education + Retention) Project. In September of 2010, Sefa was appointed by President Obama to the President’s Advisory Commission on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. Sefa served as the vice-chair of the Commission from 2010 – 2014. He has also been a reader for the APIASF (Asian Pacific Islander American Scholarship Fund), and AIGCS (American Indian Graduate Center Scholars) Gates Millennium Scholarship. Through his work on college campuses and in the larger community, Sefa has demonstrated his commitment to increasing the support and opportunities for non-traditional, marginalized, first generation students. Sefa married his high school sweetheart, Belinda Aina; and together they have 3-children, Marina (Pomona College ’23), Marcus (UC Berkeley ’25) and Malie (USC ’26).
2021 Keynote Speaker
Keynote Speaker – Sahra Nguyen
Sahra Nguyen is the founder & CEO of Nguyen Coffee Supply — the first-ever specialty Vietnamese coffee company importing and roasting in Brooklyn, New York. On a mission to transform the coffee industry through diversity, inclusion, and transparency, Nguyen Coffee Supply has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, VICE, New York Magazine, New York Times, Forbes, Fortune, and honored with the 2019 StarChefs Rising Star Award. Early January 2020, Imbibe Magazine featured Sahra Nguyen as one of the #Imbibe75 — people, places, and directions that will shape the way you drink in 2020. She is a Gold House Collective Founder for Spring 2020 cohort, a leading network to celebrate and elevate the Asian American community.