Karen Luu – Candidate for President
I moved to Arizona almost four years ago and was flabbergasted at the lack of culture and diversity here. Therefore, I was drawn to ACEL and its strong mission to spread not only cultural awareness but also serve the community. I decided to get involved so I can contribute in making a difference.
I began my career in the financial services sector and have also worked in various industries such as advertising, hospitality and training. Currently, I partner with Arizona Insurance Specialists to help people and businesses with their insurance needs and risk management. In addition, I’ve been involved in the valley and have served as Ambassador of the West Valley Women organization, as a committee member for the Phoenix Symphony, as Chair of the ACEL-Phoenix’s Corporate Relations committee in 2008 and currently as Vice President for ACEL-Phoenix. I am also an alumnus of the Federal Bureau Investigation (FBI) Citizens’ Academy.
I want to continue to help ACEL-Phoenix grow and take the organization to another level. I plan to focus on developing more leaders within the organization by bringing on board my leadership, management and mentoring skills, ideas, resources, creativeness, energy and enthusiasm to the Executive team, Board and association.
I love to learn and experience new things in life which has included traveling, golfing, horseback riding, quadding, cooking new cuisines, etc.
Bao Hoang – Candidate for Vice President
I’m an Asian American born and raised in Sioux City Iowa. I grew up in a world where there were not a lot of culture and especially Asian culture. I’ve learned to a lot of my own culture either through my parents or Asian movies. Once, I graduated high school, I decide to leave Iowa and move to California for my education. There my perspective of my own culture expanded and I fell in love with it. Shortly after my college graduation I left for Phoenix for my career.
I currently work for a company called Sunfare, a nutritional food delivery company. I’ve been with them for about 10 years now so loyalty is not a problem. I’m currently managing the operations in our Phoenix facility and also managing some side projects with our managing company called Sunfare Management.
Furthermore, some of the things I like to do on a personal level includes exercise, watching sports, and going to different restaurants. I love hanging out with my friends and family when I have time. Also, I enjoy the outdoors and traveling especially in large groups.
I hope to become the Vice President to assist our Executive Team to achieve its goals. I’ve been with ACEL long enough to understand how it functions and where I see it going. I want to make ACEL not just a network for people with business goals, but also bring something personal where our members can come and relax and enjoy the company of others with or without similar backgrounds. I want to make ACEL a place where people can come to help others as well as to help themselves. I want our members to see that ACEL is a friendly place where their goals whether personal or business can be met.
Ling Yu – Candidate for Treasurer
Born and raised in Shanghai, I moved to the Valley in 2006. I was drawn to ACEL as a way to connect with and help other Asians in the Phoenix area.
Before moving to the U.S., I worked for a number of multinational corporations in various administrative roles in Shanghai, China. Living and Working in fast growing Shanghai offered me an opportunity to grow professionally as well as be exposed to diverse cultures. I am currently an Executive Administrative Assistant and Program Assistant at Michael Baker, Jr., Inc. where I have been employed since 2006.
I have a B.S. in International Trade from Shanghai University of Finance and Economics.
I assumed the role of Treasurer the beginning of July 2009. With support of the Board, I have started the process of completing our accounting system, reimbursement system, and financial reporting. I would like to continue the effort, and have the following procedures/systems in place by the end of next year:
- Accounting system: book keeping and filing, A/P and A/R, etc.
- Monthly and annual financial reporting
- Reimbursement system
- Budgeting and budget management: Including board and committees (members)
Overall, the goal is to have a complete and transparent financial system that will support and help the growth of ACEL.
Other than Treasurer, currently I’m also serving as member of Cultural Awareness Committee. I have organized the ‘Strolling in Yokata – Trip to Japanese Garden’ event in May and now am working on a Self-defense class in September.
Malisa Lievrouw – Candidate for Secretary
I am excited to be a part of ACEL and be able to contribute my skills and energy to this organization. I have just joined ACEL as of this summer and have been extremely impressed with the Association’s devotion and commitment to its members, in addition to offering a variety of ways for members to get involved whether it be in community services, cultural awareness or networking, socially and professionally and feel a part of the Asian American community in Phoenix.
Having grown up in Colorado, I was one of two Asians in my school. I have always been proud of my culture and strongly urged my Japanese mother to teach me things about Japan, my family and ancestry. I have been fortunate enough to visit Japan and my family that still resides there.
In addition to joining ACEL, I have ventured out on my own professionally and have been enjoying my new independence as a contract paralegal. Having 10+ years in the field has allowed me to explore various fields of law and learn about many techniques and practices for whatever job is thrown my way. This career path has also provided me with tremendous organizational skills which in turn will benefit my position as secretary for ACEL.
In the next year, I hope to accomplish the Association’s goals and tasks as secretary for ACEL. I am highly organized and detail oriented, therefore I hope to make the transition as secretary as fluid as possible. Just a few of my duties as secretary include documenting meeting minutes, providing input on policies and practices and managing calendar events. Also being knowledgeable of the bylaws for ACEL, overseeing all administrative activities and procedures and coordinating executive meetings.
Iris Look – Candidate for Chair of Cultural Awareness
Iris was born and raised in South Korea, came to the US at age eighteen. She attended Arizona State University and received a BS degree in Industrial Design.
She is the owner of iSongdesign Co., a design consulting firm specializing branding, identity and environmental graphics for real estate development, retail, and hospitality industry for the past 8 years.
She has served as a President, and on the Board of Directors for the College of Design Arizona State University Alumni Association and is currently the Public Affairs Director of the Arizona Korean Association.
As an active member of Cultural Awareness committee at ACEL-Phoenix, she enjoys meeting with other Asian professionals and organizing fun and educating Asian-American cultural events.
As the Cultural Awareness Committee Chair, I hope to create a cultivating and strong committee that not only plans educational events to promote Asian American cultural awareness but also help members to learn and excel on managing projects and people — and still have fun!
Her husband Matthew is also a member of ACEL-Phoenix and serves on the Social Committee. They have a 3 years old son Ryan and 11 years old Maltese dog named Daisy. They enjoy traveling, camping, cooking and eating good foods with friends and family.
Barbara Vo – Candidate for Chair of Marketing and Communications
I am currently the Director of Business Development for Homes & Son Contractors, a family-owned, commercial contractor based in Phoenix since 1948. Born and raised in America, Barbara moved to Arizona in 2001, and joined ACEL as a way to connect with other Asian-American Professionals. With over a decade of business and marketing experience, she is also involved with the Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) Arizona Chapter as Past President and the Arizona Association for Economic Development (AAED). Barbara has a Bachelor of Science in Marketing from the University of Phoenix and is 1 of 13 Certified Professional Services Marketer (CPSM) in Arizona.
I would like to grow the marketing committee in order to offer more services to the leadership team, like creating ACEL collateral materials, and create branding standards for the chapter. Personally, I’d like to start engaging with members more often by attending other committee meetings and/or events.
Monchai Pungaew – Candidate for Chair of Community Service
I was born inside my grandmother’s two story house in a small rural town of Takhli, Thailand. The first half of my childhood included wonderful memories with my immediate and extended family. The second half of my childhood involved living in several different cities in California, typical for a U.S. military family.
I’ve attended the University of California in Santa Cruz. Despite my studies in Computer Science and Psychology, I pursued a career in music. Yes, I’ve bought into the “passion first, money follows” postulate. Nineteen years later, I am still enjoying the wonderful world of marketing & promotions in the radio/music industry. I love it!!
I’m inspired to help recruit and build a strong team of community service enthusiasts. I look forward to coaching the team toward the true sense of community ownership. Under my leadership, I promise to be committed to the community service committee and its mission, as outlined by the ACEL Guidelines. I will also help nurture upcoming leaders by training committee members on the importance of internal and external communications, and all things related to event planning. We will be a lean, mean, service machine!
I believe in the lending a hand to others as a way to empower them to help themselves. Periodically, you will find me very active with non-profit efforts like recruiting for the Phoenix Heart Walk, mentoring high school/college students, and contributing to the web-based micro-loan portal Kiva.org! Leading the ACEL Community Service Committee will allow me to practice my natural ability to organize while helping others grow.