Message from the ED: May Inspiration

This month I have been lucky to experience several reminders about why we do this work. I have had the opportunity to interact with 4 of our alumni and have seen them shine. More than that, they all credit AALEAD for developing their confidence and giving them the opportunities to lead.

On May 8, AALEAD hosted a wonderful event with UMD basketball player, Varun Ram. Varun is a great role model for our youth and was kind enough to share his time and talents with AALEAD. We had 2 AALEAD alums who are sophomores at UMD, Marjan and Jackey, conduct the interview with Varun and they were outstanding. They led a smooth, funny, and inspiring conversation.

On May 14, Asian American LEAD was filmed for NBC4’s Viewpoint. We hope to have the clip available soon! I was asked to bring 2 other people with me to represent AALEAD. I brought one of our Board members, Siu Cheung, as well as an alum of our program, Janet. Janet just finished her freshman year of college and she has used what she learned from AALEAD to get active on campus. I was so inspired to see her speak on camera with confidence and ease.

We have a 4th alum joining us at our 16th Annual Dinner! I hope you will join us to see Bhadon share his story. We met last week to hear his beginning thoughts for his speech and I was so proud to hear about all of his accomplishments in his first year of school.

I have known all 4 of these amazing young people for the past 4 ½ years and they have transformed themselves over that time. Because I know them well, I asked for their candor in what AALEAD did for them and if it wouldn’t have just happened anyway because of who they are. All 4 young alumni have been emphatic about what AALEAD did for them and that it is because of AALEAD that they are the confident leaders they are. For me, it doesn’t get any better than that.

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