The Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence is a national resource center on domestic violence, sexual violence, trafficking, and other forms of gender-based violence in Asian/Asian-American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities. We envision a world free of gender-based violence for communities with equal opportunities for all to thrive.
Our mission is to disrupt gender-based violence, which causes physical, sexual, emotional, spiritual and economic harm within AAPI communities throughout the U.S. and its territories.
We work together with and within our community to:
- Uplift the voices and experiences of the AAPI communities who are impacted by violence;
- Build capacity through training and technical support for those organizations who serve our communities;
- Engage allied communities and systems to create shifts in gendered cultural norms and address injustices;
- Educate our communities to mobilize them to prevent gender-based violence; and
- Advocate for policies and practices that ensure access to essential rights and services.
ANNIKA ALTFELD (she/her), ADMINISTRATIVE COORDINATOR
Annika Altfeld joined the API-GBV staff in October of 2020. She brings over 20 years experience working in operations and administrative roles with a strong focus on the non-profit and environmental/conservation sectors.
She has just finished several years of project management, running the conservation organization Native Range Inc. – the last notable project being restoration of Haida Gwaii (Queen Charlotte Islands) in Canada.
Originally from Maui, Hawai’i, Annika now resides in Southern California. When Annika is not working for API-GBV, she is painting tropical watercolors and sharing the Aloha spirit.
She is passionate about protecting animals and works with several nonprofits donating time and a portion of her artwork profits. Annika donates her watercolors and artwork to several non-profits including American Cancer Society, Upper Ojai Search and Rescue, Ventura County Area Agency on Ageing and The Diversity Collective of Ventura County. Annika is a proud alumna of Kamehameha III School of Lahaina, Hawai’i.
HAI CHAN (she/her), ACCOUNTING MANAGER
hchan[at]api-gbv[dot]org | 415.930.4858
Hai Chan is the Accounting Manager at the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence. She manages the full accounting cycle and payroll, prepares on-going financials and financial budgets and cost reports for federal and foundation grants. She is responsible for preparing the federal drawdown and quarterly, semi-annual and annual cost reports. Hai coordinates the organization’s annual independent audit, and other program audits as required. She works closely with Executive Director and Finance Director.
Hai has 16 years of accounting experience, eleven of which are in non-profit accounting and financial management. She has BS degree in Accounting and Finance. Before joining the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence in 2015, she was Senior Accountant at the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum for nine years.
Kayla CHAN (she/her), Program Coordinator, Language Access in the Courts
Kayla Chan is a Program Coordinator at the Language Access Program with the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence. She is responsible for leading the Improving Language Access in the Courts project, and providing technical assistance and training to partner agencies around providing language access through a cultural-humility and healing-informed lens. Prior to this, Kayla was the Later in Life Program Manager at Womankind (formerly New York Asian Women’s Center) where she designed and implemented programs for older API survivors of gender-based violence.
Identifying as a survivor and immigrant, Kayla believes in the power of grassroots activism and comes from a direct services background. Born and raised in Singapore, she migrated to New York in 2009 and has worked in various non-profit organizations in different capacities. As an advocate, Kayla has served multiple communities ranging from older crime victims to non-dominant languages survivors of domestic violence, sexual violence, human trafficking and elder abuse. She also has project managerial experience with a demonstrated history of successful development of programs and strategic planning to achieve targeted goals. Kayla enjoys facilitating workshops to professionals and communities around cultural humility, historical trauma, intergenerational trauma and spreading awareness of gender-based violence that perpetuates across the lifespan.
Kayla received her M.A. in Global Gender Studies from the State University of New York at Buffalo and is excited to expand her advocacy work on a national level with API-GBV. Having suffered a stroke in July 2019, Kayla has a condition called verbal apraxia and aphasia. She is currently recovering while continuing to dedicate herself to her work.
Marcy Delisle (she/her), Director of Finance and Administration
Marcy Delisle joined the API-GBV staff in August of 2019. She brings over 20 years’ experience working with non-profit and government agencies in the areas of Finance, Administration and Human Resources and has worked extensively with tribal government programs and services, grass roots community organizations and economic development agencies. Marcy is responsible to oversee and manage the finance, accounting, human resources and administrative functions at API-GBV. As a consultant, Marcy has experience providing budget development and training, operational policy and procedural development, performance management programming, organizational restructuring and change management strategies. She holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree as a Management major from Concordia University’s John Molson School of Business located in Montreal, Canada.
Cannon Han (he/him), Senior Program Manager, Enhancing Access to Services: Training and Technical Assistance Project
Cannon Han is a Senior Program Associate on the OVC Enhancing Access to Services: Training and Technical Assistance Project. He has over ten years of experience providing technical assistance and training to programs on: Title VI compliance and advocacy; language access; interpretation; and translation. Prior to re-joining API, he was the Title VI Administrator for Caltrain and the San Mateo Transit District. He also served as a Senior Court Services Analyst with the California Administrative Office of the Courts, Court Interpreter Program, and an attorney with the Mental Health Advocacy Project.
GRACE HUANG, J.D. (she/her), Director of Policy
ghuang[at]api-gbv[dot]org | 206.420.7369
Grace Huang is the Policy Director at the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence, and is responsible for coordinating the Institute’s legislative, administrative and court policy advocacy. Prior to her position at API-GBV, Ms. Huang worked at the state level to advance the interests of survivors of gender based-violence in the Washington State legislature. She worked at the national level to address the needs of victims in the federal Violence Against Women Act and the Family Violence Services and Prevention Act, and to ensure that financial resources authorized in federal legislation are accessible to domestic violence programs providing services for immigrant survivors of domestic violence. Ms. Huang previously worked as an attorney, both in private practice and in civil legal services, representing clients in immigration, family law, government benefits, and housing cases.
Ms. Huang represents the Asian Pacific Institute on the steering committee of the National Taskforce to End Sexual and Domestic Violence, and serves on the Washington State Gender and Justice Commission of the Washington Supreme Court. Ms. Huang is the recipient of several awards: American Bar Association Commission on Domestic and Sexual Violence 20/20 Vision award (2015); University of Washington School of Law Distinguished Alumnae Award from the Law Women’s Caucus (2013); and an inductee of the UW Law School Public Interest Law Association Hall of Fame (2008). She was recognized by the Washington State Bar Family Law Section as “Professional of the Year” (2005); received the Cynthia Gillespie Award from the Northwest Women’s Law Center recognizing her work advancing legal rights for women (2000); and, along with her colleagues received the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project “Golden Door Award” (1999) for her advocacy on behalf of immigrants.
SARAH KHAN (she/her), DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMS
skhan[at]api-gbv[dot]org | 415.568.3339
Sarah Khan, is the Director of Programs at the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence. As the Director of Programs, she oversees the coordination and administration of all aspects of government, public and privately funded API-GBV programs. She also manages and supervises all programmatic areas of technical assistance (TA) and training; designs and evaluates programs and processes; acts as a subject matter expert (SME) on various TA, and training and research topics; supervises staff; develops and monitor budgets. In partnership with the Executive Director and management team, she identifies programmatic opportunities and challenges and helps determines organizational strategy that contributes toward ensuring all programs work collaboratively in tandem to advance the organizational mission and vision.
Sarah’s direct service experience has deeply informed how she understands and addresses challenges faced by the community she serves. After 9-11, she intentionally chose to work at the intersection of race and gender justice to concretely reduce the vulnerability of immigrants, refugees and other marginalized groups. Sarah has a longstanding passion for grassroots activism, domestic violence advocacy, and community education and empowerment, with close to 20 years of working in the field. She has expertise in program design, development and management; with a focus on changes to people, organizations and systems across areas. Her passion is fueled by breaking silos and encouraging herself and others to address intersectionality in their work by addressing root causes of gender based violence. Originally from Kashmir and settled in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family, Sarah is fluently multi-lingual in various South Asian languages.
Monica Modi Khant (she/her), Executive Director
mkhant[at]api-gbv[dot]org | 404.308.9111
As an experienced trainer and national speaker, she shares her expertise on gender-based violence, immigration law, and the intersection of immigrant rights, human trafficking, domestic violence, sexual assault, and asylum. With over two decades of experience in the non-profit legal community, she is also a speaker on non-profit leadership. Monica is passionate about impacting systemic changes at the local and national levels, strengthen communities, and create a broader understanding to influence culture and lives of AAPI survivors and their families.
Monica received her BA from Rutgers University in and her J.D. from New England School of Law. Upon graduation, she was the Detention Attorney at the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) where she represented detained asylum seekers. In 2000, Monica continued practicing immigration law with private immigration firms in Boston, MA. In 2005, she was appointed as the Director of Legal Services at the International Institute of Boston (IIB) and joined Georgia Asylum & Immigration Network (GAIN) as their first Executive Director from 2006-2020.
Monica currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Georgia Coalition Against Domestic Violence (GCADV) and the Advisory Board of Raksha. She is a graduate of Leadership Atlanta Class of 2015 and the Regional Leadership Institute in 2018. Monica is currently a fellow of the prestigious International Women’s Forum fellowship program. In 2014, she received the Public Interest Award from the South Asian Bar Association (SABA). In 2017, she was honored as Atlanta Magazine’s Women Making a Mark and has received Emory Law School’s EPIC “Unsung Devotion to Those Most in Need” Award in 2018. Monica has also received the Legal Legend Award from the American Constitution Society (ACS) in 2019.
Michele Ko (she/her), Policy Associate
mko[at]api-gbv[dot]org | 415.438.7806
Michele is the Policy Associate at the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence. She is a Chinese-Korean American woman and daughter of immigrants based in the Bay Area. Michele comes to this work from the reproductive justice movement, founded by Black women and women of color to ensure all people have the right to have a child, not have a child, and parent in a safe and healthy environment. Michele has previously worked at Abortion Care Network, the ACLU’s Reproductive Freedom Project, and Planned Parenthood, and has spent many years as a doula in reproductive healthcare clinics. Michele received her BA in Anthropology from Wesleyan University and will soon be an MPH student at UC Berkeley focused on community health.
Matāpuna Levenson (she/her), Program Manager, Domestic Violence Homicide Prevention Initiative
mlevenson[at]api-gbv[dot]org | 415.930.4703
Matāpuna Ma’ilo-Levenson is the Domestic Violence Homicide Prevention Initiative (DVHPI) Program Manager for the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence. She is responsible for providing technical assistance and training on models and issues related to culturally relevant domestic violence homicide prevention (DVHP), as well as analyzing immerging issues and documenting best practices on DVHP in Asian, Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander communities. Prior to joining the Institute, Matāpuna was the Training and Technical Assistance Director for the Hawaiʻi State Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
Her career in the gender-based violence movement began in 2015 while residing in Salt Lake City, Utah. As the lead victim advocate and program coordinator for the Salt Lake Area Family Justice Center at YWCA Utah, Matāpuna was responsible for: overseeing daily operations and supporting a diverse team of trauma-informed, multilingual advocates; providing support to and in collaboration with individuals and families in crisis due to DV/SA, human trafficking, vulnerable adult abuse, and stalking; and facilitating in partnership with allied organizations and professionals, a coordinated response to violence, abuse, and exploitation in Salt Lake County and across Utah. She also volunteered in various capacities – as an organizer through the Utah Pacific Islander Civic Engagement and Health Coalitions, and facilitating peer support groups for Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander women.
Born on Tutuila, American Sāmoa and raised in Waialua, Hawaiʻi, Matāpuna now resides on Moku o Keawe (Hawaiʻi Island) with her ohana/aiga. She has served on various boards and commissions with her most recent appointment to the Hawaiʻi County Committee on the Status of Women in 2020. She is a volunteer with the North Hawaiʻi Domestic Violence Action Committee and member of the NASW Hawaiʻi Chapter. She received her BSW from BYU-Hawaiʻi and her MSW with a focus on social change and innovation from the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work.
SHIRLEY LUO (she/her), RESOURCE CENTER COORDINATOR
sluo[at]api-gbv[dot]org | 415.930.4855
Shirley Luo is the Resource Center Coordinator at the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence. She is responsible for analyzing and presenting program data for the Institute, organizing and presenting trainings and webinars, managing and updating Institute publications, and maintaining the organization’s website and communication strategies, including social media and listserv. She also engages the Institute’s national network of AAPI direct service agencies, state coalitions, TA providers, and other entities to deepen collaboration and nurture connections. Shirley received an M.A. in International Relations from NYU’s Department of Politics and a B.A. in History and Political Science from UC Berkeley. She has worked to coordinate responses to and investigations on international human rights violations, focusing on cases of sexual and gender-based violence in the Middle East and North Korea. She has also devoted her graduate studies to analyzing the advancement of human rights in international prisons, refugee communities, and non-state territories. Shirley is happy to be working at API-GBV to help address gender-based violence in API communities within the United States.
ANA PAULA NOGUEZ MERCADO (she/her), Interpretation Coordinator, ITARC
anoguez[at]api-gbv[dot]org | 415.930.4856
Ana Paula Noguez Mercado is the Interpretation Training and Technical Assistance Coordinator at the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence. She is responsible for coordinating and facilitating trainings for interpreters and bilingual advocates, providing technical assistance to diverse agencies and providers on building interpreter skills, and improving language access for domestic violence and sexual assault victims. Previously, she worked at the National Women’s Institute (Mexico City) where she served as Adviser on Violence against Women, Access to Justice and Human Rights to the Institute’s President. Once in Los Angeles, she designed, implemented and oversaw the Domestic Violence Prevention Program at the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), aimed at raising awareness and informing immigrant survivors about their legal rights. She has experience developing curricula and facilitating trainings on language access, empowerment of immigrant and indigenous communities through access to legal remedies and political participation, as well as on diversity, cultural humility, implicit bias and access to reproductive health.
Originally, from Mexico City, Ana Paula is fluent in Spanish, English and French. She has seven years of experience as a professional interpreter and translator for legal aid and non-profit organizations, public schools, universities, cultural institutions, among others. In 2014, she co-founded Antena Los Ángeles, a collective dedicated to language justice advocacy, training and consulting, as well as interpreting for the social justice context. She co-coordinates a network of volunteer interpreters/translators who support language needs in diverse settings in the Los Angeles area.
Ana Paula received her law degree from Universidad Iberoamericana (Mexico City). She obtained a Master’s Degree in Gender and the Law from Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona/CIESAS with a special research interest on language access and due process guarantees for detainee indigenous women in Oaxaca, Mexico. She received her LL.M. (Master of Laws) in Critical Legal Studies and International Human Rights Law from UCLA School of Law, Los Angeles, CA.
HYEJIN SHIM (she/her), Culturally-Specific Programs Coordinator
hshim[at]api-gbv[dot]org | 415.568.3338
Hyejin Shim joins API-GBV as the Sexual Assault Program Coordinator. She is a queer Korean bilingual anti-violence advocate and community organizer based in Oakland, California. Hyejin comes with a decade’s expertise in anti-violence work, including direct service, especially for LGBTQ survivors in immigrant/refugee communities. She first started as a rape crisis counselor in San Francisco, and after devoting the last six years to domestic violence work, is excited to refocus on addressing sexual assault. She is a co-founder of the national advocacy project Survived and Punished, which is dedicated to supporting criminalized and incarcerated survivors of violence.
DEBORAH J. LEE, CHAIR
Retired, formerly Senior Vice President at Futures Without Violence
Debbie Lee is the Board Chair of the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence. She recently retired from Futures Without Violence (formerly, Family Violence Prevention Fund) after 30 years with the organization. Her work focuses on prevention including directing the Early Childhood Initiative; and Building Healthy Teen Relationships to promote prevention to decrease relationship violence and increase positive, protective relationship skills. She designed and directed the National Health Resource Center on Domestic Violence – strengthening the health care response to domestic violence and forging partnerships in 27 states working with public health departments and domestic violence programs and 25 health centers in Tribal communities across the country.
In 2010-2012, Ms. Lee was appointed to the Department of Justice National Advisory Council on Violence Against Women. She was a founding board member of the San Francisco-based Asian Women’s Shelter, the National Network on Behalf of Immigrant and Refugee Women, two California state coalitions, The Women’s Foundation and the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence. Ms. Lee was the recipient of the first annual California Office of Women’s Health, Helen Rodriguez-Trias 2002 Award for Excellence in Community-based Women’s Health Leadership. In 2012, she was one of the 20 Movement Makers in Move to End Violence.
LENI MARIN, SECRETARY
Retired, formerly Senior Vice President at Futures Without Violence
Leni Marin served as Senior Vice President at Futures Without Violence, a national organization dedicated to ending violence against women and girls, where she worked for 30 years. She directed the organization’s Rights and Social Justice Department. An immigrant from the Philippines, she provided advocacy and education efforts to improve the lives of abused immigrant women and children. She developed public policy to improve the rights of immigrant women, including a major provision within the Violence Against Women Act of 1994 and its reauthorization in 2000 and 2005. She also provided technical assistance to shelter workers, immigrant women’s rights activists, and social workers to make services more accessible to battered immigrant women.
Ms. Marin represented Futures Without Violence at international conferences, including the 1993 United Nations World Conference on Human Rights in Vienna where she organized the workshop, “Women on the Move: Human Rights Abuses Against Immigrant and Refugee Women;” and the 1995 United Nations World Conference on Women non-governmental organization (NGO) activities in China where she organized and presented in panels and workshops entitled “From Private Problem to Community Concern: Preventing Domestic Violence Before it Begins,” and “Migrant Women’s Human Rights in G-7 Countries.” In addition, Ms. Marin initiated global projects and partnerships on ending violence against women with NGOs in China, India, Mexico and Russia. Ms. Marin retired from Futures Without Violence in December 2013.
Lori Kodama, Treasurer
Chief Operating Officer | Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy
Lori Kodama joined AAPIP in 2006. As Chief Operating Officer she is responsible for managing finance and administration. Lori has over thirty years of experience in nonprofit management including program development, organizational development, governance, human resources, finance, grants administration, technology and communications. Prior to joining the staff of AAPIP, Lori worked at the Asian Law Caucus for fourteen years and for seven years worked at the Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum.
She is a founding sister of the National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF), and has served on the board of directors of Asian Pacific Islanders for Reproductive Health (APIRH), Asian Pacific Partners for Empowerment, Advocacy and Leadership (APPEAL), and the Philippine Resource Center. Lori holds a BA in Humanities at the University of California, Berkeley.
SUJATA WARRIER, PH.D.
Training and Technical Assistance Director | Battered Women’s Justice Project
Sujata Warrier is the Director of Training and Technical Assistance at the Battered Women’s Justice Project. Previously she was the Director of the Community Response Policy and Training of the New York State Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence. She trains at local, state, national, and international levels and provides technical assistance to professionals in various systems such as health care, law enforcement, justice, social services on the issue of gender based violence, and cultural competency – delivering numerous keynotes on the issue of culture, competency, relativism, and violence against women. She provides assistance on legislative and policy issues regarding battered immigrant women. She received her Ph.D. from the Maxwell School of Syracuse University. She has written and published articles on violence against women in the international context.
In addition to her work on the board of the Asian Pacific Institute on Gender-Based Violence, Sujata continues to advocate on behalf of immigrant survivors of gender-based violence in Manavi, a pioneering South Asian women’s organization in New Jersey and on the board of ASISTA, a resource for advocates and attorneys. She serves as faculty on the National Judicial Institute of the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges.
Her international work includes serving the Country Director for the American Bar Association’s Rule of Law Initiative in Bangladesh; working with Chemonics International and the Egyptian government to help develop a national Egyptian strategy to address violence against women in Egypt; consulting for a domestic violence institute hosted by UNDP in Amman, Jordan; and working with CEHAT and Masum in India on women’s health and gender violence.
Her awards include: The Rev. Cheng Imm Tan Visionary Award; AWAKE Award for South Asian Women’s Advocacy; the Indian Chamber of Commerce Award honoring Women Achievers; and the New York 30 Women Leaders Award.
Principal Partner | Shadowbend Strategies
Linda Phan is a Principal partner with Shadowbend Strategies. The firm provides legislative and non-profit management consulting for advocacy organizations. Formerly, she served as Director of Public Policy with the Texas Council on Family Violence where she led the largest domestic violence coalition policy team and secured funding for 88 domestic violence organizations in Texas. In this capacity, she led initiatives on program policy, child welfare, criminal justice responses, immigration and economic support for survivors. Prior to her work at TCFV, she was the Executive Director of the Asian Family Support Services of Austin, an organization specifically addressing the cultural and language needs of Asian and other immigrant families affected by family and sexual violence. Linda Phan joined as executive director in 2005, when it had just three staff members. By the time she left 12 years later, it had grown into a 1.4 million-dollar agency providing a wide range of holistic and culturally-grounded services to the growing immigrant population in central Texas.
A major component of Linda’s work was systems advocacy and working with institutions to develop best practices for responding to the needs of immigrant survivors of violence. Alongside this, Linda served as an advisor on language access for the National Domestic Violence Hotline, and chaired the City of Austin Commission on Immigrant Affairs. In 2014, President Barack Obama appointed Linda as a White House Commissioner to advise the administration on health and economic issues affecting API communities across the nation.
Linda is a proud University of Texas Longhorn and an even prouder mom to two daughters.
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