Nina Jusuf has been working on domestic violence and sexual assault issues since 1992, starting as a hotline volunteer before becoming a shelter-based domestic violence advocate and later as the Executive Director of the San Francisco Women Against Rape for five years. She is one of the founders of NAPIESV and has led numerous trainings and technical assistance on sexual assault and domestic violence issues in general and API-specific trauma-informed services. Nina believes in collective wellness beyond self-care and has led/facilitated trainings on organizational sustainability, multicultural wellness, sustaining activists and activism, and genuine security for survivors, activists, and women human rights defenders in Asia, the Balkans, and the United States. In addition, Nina has experience leading an experiential learning-based youth organization and overseeing the Home Based Childcare Center and Federal Nutrition Program. She can be reached at [email protected].
Mira Yusef is the executive director of Monsoon Asians & Pacific Islanders in Solidarity, formerly Monsoon United Asian Women of Iowa, an organization serving victims/survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault in Asian and Pacific Islander communities in Iowa. She is also one of the founders and one of the staff of the National Organization of Asian Pacific Islanders Ending Sexual Violence (NAPIESV). Mira has a Master’s in Social Work, with specialization in Community Organizing, and a Master of Arts in Southeast Asian Studies from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Mira was a recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship, 2004-2005, to pursue research in the Philippines on Muslim Filipinas employed as domestic workers in the Middle East. She was also awarded the National Security Education Program (NSEP) David Boren Fellowship in 2006 to study the Indonesian and Malay languages as well as conduct field research in Malaysia and the Philippines. She can be reached at [email protected] or [email protected].
Hieu Pham is a Program Associate at the National Association of Asians & Pacific Islanders Ending Sexual Violence. She was formerly a Co-Director of Programs and Community Outreach at Monsoon Asians & Pacific Islanders in Solidarity, where she administered the Campus Advocacy Program and launched Yoni Chats, a support group for API sexual assault victims focused on healthy sexuality and healing through the arts and culturally-rooted practices. Hieu is a former journalist who worked as a government reporter for the Iowa City Press-Citizen and covered presidential campaigns for Agence France-Presse. She immigrated to the United States as a child and refugee from Vietnam and is passionate about issues such as Asian American identity, community health, and the immigrant diaspora experience. She has a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Mass Communications from the University of Iowa. Hieu can be reached at [email protected].
Ann Nguyen is the Social Media Coordinator at National Organization of Asian Pacific Islanders Ending Sexual Violence (NAPIESV) & Monsoon Asians & Pacific Islanders in Solidarity, working remotely from Illinois. She was born & raised in Iowa and identifies as Vietnamese-American, and is conversational in Vietnamese. Ann graduated from Iowa State University in 2021 and received a B.A in Apparel, Merchandising, and Design with an emphasis in Public Relations. She started her career as Monsoon's Community Outreach & Social Media Coordinator based in the Des Moines office where she will led long-form and short-form content that engaged Monsoon’s diverse audiences both online and in-person. She can be reached at [email protected].
A proud bisexual second-generation Filipino-American, Meg Sunga (she/her) is the Program Associate for NAPIESV. She is currently the host of ElevateUplift's Rooted in Healing podcast and is the owner of the podcast production company, Idea Pig Productions LLC. She earned her B.A. in Sociology at the University of Arkansas and received her M.A. in Higher Education Administration from the University of Central Florida. With ten years of experience across three different industries: higher education, ed-tech, and social advocacy, Meg passionately invests in work that enhances diversity, equity, and inclusion. In her spare time, Meg travels, sings karaoke, and serves as a Big for Big Brothers Big Sisters. She can be reached at [email protected].
Jeanette Acosta is a Program Associate at the National Organization of Asians & Pacific Islanders Ending Sexual Violence (NAPIESV). She works remotely and is based in California. Jeanette was trained at Cornell University in the Field of Medicinal Plants, and teaches Herbalism and Ethnobotany with a niche in Maritime Culture and California Native Plants. She is a Clinical Aromatherapist, an Ayurveda Health + Yoga Practitioner/Teacher Trainer, a Certified Teacher in Permaculture Agroecological Design, and has taught and supported several Native Nations to move towards successful cultural food sovereignty programs. She co-curated the herbal program for WeavingEarth in collaboration with the Native American Rehabilitation Association (NARA) for NARA's Youth Residential Treatment Center. Jeanette can be reached at [email protected].
Mylene A. Cahambing, also known as Auntie r.a.d. Leng Leng or Enunja ti tatinmiji hataji, is the Research & Evaluation Program Coordinator at NAPIESV. Rad has been a longtime supporter of NAPIESV with previous work on NAPIESV’s collaborative writings: Healing BSDBJ Peace Bangka Peace Canoe 2014 and NAPIESV’s 2021-22 Wellness Healing Guide. Twin-Born in Quezon City to Bisayan parents, she immigrated to the SF Bay Area when she was 10 years old. She is a Public Health Nurse / Integrative Disability Wellness Advocate to erase stigma related to invisible conditions via Rekonstraksyon, a social media post-TBI traumatic growth resource space. Rad is a Vision Holder, Co-Founder and blogger of Balik sa Dagat Bangka Journey, sharing inter-tribal canoe-building dream stories that became a World Bangka to celebrate halo-halo indigenous resistance. JOY = researcHER, healing arts i.e. dream power paddle-craft making and restorative rest. She can be reached at [email protected].
Arvian joined NAPIESV from Silicon Valley, California. For almost 30 years, Arvian has been working in the tech industry, with over 20 years in software engineering and eight years in management. Most recently, Arvian led a group of software engineers working to improve developer experience and productivity at LinkedIn. In March of 2023, Arvian took a career break from the tech industry. During this time, Arvian was introduced to Nina Jusuf and learned about NAPIESV. Persuaded by its mission, in July 2023, Arvian joined NAPIESV to help end sexual violence, especially in the API community. Arvian can be reached at [email protected].
Luz Márquez Benbow, is a Black Boricua adult survivor of child sexual abuse, incest and rape, and an abolitionist in the making that is guided by survivor leadership and working at the intersections of gender, race, and violence. As a former Just Beginnings Collaborative Fellow funded by the Novo Foundation and Ms Foundation from 2016- 2019, Luz was able to focus on her Black Latin community and childhood sexual abuse. During this time Luz formed the International Alianza de Mujeres Negrx (#IamNegrx), a survivor network of Afrolatin/AfroCaribbean to advance policy and movement building toward ending child sexual abuse and sexual violence across the Diaspora. Luz has been an anti-rape policy advocate since 1998, where she worked on statewide anti-sexual assault issues at the NYS Coalition Against Sexual Assault (NYSCASA). In this capacity Luz worked with State leaders, State agencies, colleges, and statewide advocacy groups to develop policies that ensure the safety of New Yorkers and that support survivors. In 2003, Luz co-founded the National Organization of Sisters of Color Ending Sexual Assault (SCESA), in her role as co-founder and Associate Director of SCESA, Luz co-led the legislative efforts for the development of the Culturally Specific Grant program within the Reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act in 2005 and 2012. This historical grant program provides resources and supports for Communities of Color led organizations across the U.S in addressing violence against women. Luz co-published a research journal on Afrolatinas and Child Sexual Abuse : Delida Sanchez, Luz Márquez Benbow, Martha Hernández-Martínez & Josephine V. Serrata (2019) Invisible Bruises: Theoretical and Practical Considerations for Black/Afro-Latina Survivors of Childhood Sexual Abuse, Women & Therapy; and was a contributing author to, LoveWITHAccountability: Digging Up the Roots of Child Sexual Abuse by Aishah Shahidah Simmons. Luz is the proud mother of 3, raised in East Harlem and a first-generation Black Puerto Rican, which infuses her intersectional analysis concerning race, gender, and violence.
Lea Akima is a Program Administrative Assistant at the National Organization of Asians & Pacific Islanders Ending Sexual Violence (NAPIESV). Lea is Filipino/Japanese, queer, a UC Berkeley graduate with a B.A. in Sociology and Theater, and is currently located in the Bay Area, CA. Their experience with community engagement, awareness, and advocacy spans from non-profit organizations such as the Berkeley Center on Comparative Equality & Anti-Discrimination Law, The Motley Fool Foundation, and Asian Health Services - Banteay Srei. For the past six years, Lea has been with Banteay Srei as a Consultant, working with young SEA girls, women, and AFABs who are at-risk or involved in sexual exploitation. They are currently a part of a Reproductive Well-Being grant project surveying the needs of the community. Lea can be reached at [email protected].