OCA - Greater Los Angeles
Biographies of the 2013 Board of Directors
Ed Lew (President) ● Lisa Thong (Vice President) ● Lawrence Joe (Secretary) ● Stacey Toda (Treasurer) ● Loretta So (Director of Communications) ● Andrew Yen (Director of Membership) ● Jen Ju (Director of Programming) ● Dora Quach (Director of Education & Culture) ● Mike Fong (Director of Community Relations) ● Tom Eng (Director of Public Affairs) ● Arnold Lee (Director of Fundraising) ● William Hsu (Director-at-Large) ● William Tran (Director-at-Large) ● Chris Fong (Director-at-Large)
Ed Lew | President – Ed is Principal Counsel for The Walt Disney Company in Burbank, where he provides legal support for Disney Technology Solutions and Services and Disney Interactive. A native of Los Angeles, Ed moved north to attend UC Berkeley, graduating with Bachelor of Arts degrees in Economics and Ethnic Studies. He returned to L.A. after college and received his law degree from the UCLA School of Law. While at UCLA, Ed served as Editor-in-Chief of the UCLA Asian Pacific American Law Journal and Co-Chair of the UCLA Asian Pacific Islander Law Students Association and Southern California Asian Pacific American Law Students Association. Ed is the current President of OCA-GLA and also served as President 2008 and 2011. He also was President of the Asian Pacific American Bar Association (APABA) of Los Angeles County in 2009 and remains active as a member of its Advisory Board. He also serves on the boards of the Asian Pacific American Friends of the Theatre and UCLA Asian Pacific Alumni Association.
Lisa Thong | Vice President – Lisa Thong is a Special Assistant to State Controller John Chiang, California’s chief fiscal officer. She is responsible for outreach to various communities statewide. Previously, Lisa worked as an editorial assistant for !t Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, in New York as well as on nonpartisan civic engagement issues affecting the Asian Pacific Islander American communities through her role at Center for Asian Americans United for Self-Empowerment (CAUSE). Additionally, Lisa has worked as a field representative for former California State Senator Jack Scott. Lisa graduated from Claremont McKenna College with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Literature and a sequence in Asian American Studies. In her free time, she enjoys daydreaming about the what-ifs of life as a starving artist.
Lawrence Joe | Secretary – Lawrence Joe is a long-time community activist, organizer, and attorney with roots in Los Angeles Chinatown and the San Gabriel Valley. He is currently the Project Director for the California Association of Nonprofits (CalNonprofits), a statewide organization seeking to build the political clout of the nonprofit sector in California. Lawrence has extensive experience working in the Asian and Pacific Islander community, having worked or volunteered for a number of grassroots, community organizations in Boston, Oakland, and Los Angeles' Chinatown. A graduate of UCLA School of Law and the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs' Department of Urban and Regional Planning, Lawrence was co-Chair of UCLA's Asian Pacific Islander Law Students Association and was co-Editor-in-Chief of the Asian Pacific American Law Journal. Lawrence earned his Bachelors Degree at UC Berkeley, majoring in Asian American Studies and Political Science. He also has a Masters Degree in Education from Harvard's Graduate School of Education. In addition to his involvement with OCA-GLA, Lawrence is active with the Chinatown Community for Equitable Development (CCED) and is co-chair of a Christian social justice organization called Asian American and Pacific Islander Christians for Social Justice (AAPI-CSJ).
Stacey Toda | Treasurer – Stacey Ann Fong Toda was born in Los Angeles and still lives in her hometown of Torrance. She currently works as the Deputy Chief of Staff for Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster. Her past jobs include Asian Pacific Islander Communications Consultant for Wells Fargo and as the Asian Pacific Islander American Senior Field Representative for former Assemblymember George Nakano. In 2006, Stacey successfully ran her first political campaign as the campaign manager and ensured that Asian Americans are still represented on the Torrance School Board. She was named PoliticalCircus.com’s “Top 30 Under 30” Asian Americans in the United States. She has served four terms as OCA-GLA President and has served in the past as Vice President, Secretary and Director of Fundraising. She graduated from UC San Diego with degrees in History and Ethnic Studies.
Loretta So | Director of Communications – Loretta graduated from UC San Diego with a B.S. in Bioengineering-Biotechnology and a minor in Film Studies. While at UCSD, Loretta was an active member of MASA (Multi-Asian Student Association) and Alpha Phi Omega, a co-ed service fraternity. She also studied abroad at the University of Hong Kong for a semester. Following her graduation from UCSD, she worked at EMD Biosciences in San Diego, updating their catalog of life science research products, but ultimately decided to pursue her dream of working in entertainment, and moved back to her hometown in Los Angeles to work at Creative Artists Agency, a prominent entertainment and sports agency. Currently, she works at Lime Orchard Productions and is an active member and volunteer for CAPE (Coalition of Asian Pacifics in Entertainment).
Andrew Yen | Director of Membership – Andrew grew up and currently resides in the San Gabriel Valley. He graduated cum laude from the University of California, Irvine with a B.A. in Criminology, Law and Society. Andrew recently graduated from Southwestern Law School. While in law school, he served as President of the Asian Pacific America Law Students Association and Regional Director for the Pacific South of the National Asian Pacific American Law Student Association. Andrew also externed for the Hon. S. James Otero of the U.S. District Court, Central District of California. He also studied Chinese law and interned for W&H Law Firm in Beijing, China. Andrew is a dedicated volunteer to SCCLA’s Pro Bono Legal Clinic and APABA’s Elder Law and Naturalization Clinic. He is actively involved with several bar associations and other API community organizations.
Jen Ju | Director of Programming – Jen, a resident of Monterey Park, CA has grown up feeling empowered as an Asian American all her life. It was not until she interned for former-Assembly Member Judy Chu that she realized the struggles Asian Americans still faced. She graduated from Georgetown University in 2010 as an International Affairs - Culture and Politics major and plans to dedicate her life to social justice. Jen has been involved in many non-profit organizations, including APALC and Kollaboration. She served as OCA-GLA’s first Civil Rights Fellow and continued on as Treasurer after her fellowship ended. She currently works as an account coordinator at IW Group, Inc., a marketing, advertising and public relations firm that works with high-profile clients to reach the Asian American community nationwide. In her spare time, Jen enjoys wandering through cities, finding culinary adventures, and occasionally, chasing celebrities. She also hopes to one day become an Asian pop star or open a pastry shop.
Dora Quach | Director of Education and Culture – Dora received her BA in Art History
from UC-San Diego. She has been an active member in the community since she was a teenager with various organizations over the years such as the Asian Youth Center and the American Cancer Society. She began her work with OCA as an intern at the OCA National Center and has stayed involved ever since. Currently, Dora serves as the Administrative Manager at the Center for the Pacific Asian Family (CPAF). Dora also serves on the National Steering Committee for APIA Historic Preservation.
Mike Fong | Director of Community Relations – Mike graduated from UCLA in 1999 with a B.S. Degree in Psychobiology and a Minor in Education. As a Bruin, Mike was active with the Asian Pacific Coalition, a student advocacy group representing the interests of on-campus Asian American organizations. He also volunteered as a Project Director of the Asian American Tutorial Project, a student-run student-initiated community service program that mentored youth at Castelar Elementary in LA’s Chinatown. Mike is the East Area Director for Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. Active in the community, Mike is a board member of the UCLA Asian Pacific Alumni Association and President of the Los Angeles City Employees Asian American Association chapter and is excited about continuing his involvement in OCA-GLA and working with all of its wonderful members and organizing great events!
Tom Eng | Director of Public Affairs – A graduate of UCLA, Tom is presently employed as an engineer with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works. Tom Eng has been very active with the community. In addition to serving as Board member of OCA-GLA, he is also a board member of Chinatown Public Safety Association (CPSA), board member of Media Action Network for Asian Americans (MANAA), advisory board member of the Friends of the Chinatown Library, and member of the following: Firecracker Run Committee, Chinese Historical Society, LA County Asian American Employees Association, Friends of Chinese American Museum, as well as a volunteer for the Chinese Chamber of Commerce. Tom Eng’s photographic hobby has allowed him to be a photographer for OCA-GLA and various other organizations and events. He has attended every OCA National Convention since 1994. Through his hobby and affiliations, Tom has been networking and interacting with the Asian Pacific American community for over 25 years.
Arnold Lee | Director of Fundraising – As a first generation American, Arnold Lee believes firmly in making sure that young people and new immigrants become civically engaged. He has been a voter education activist since middle school. He began his political and civic activism by registering new citizens to vote at naturalization ceremonies. Arnold has served as staff, intern, and volunteer on many statewide, legislative, and local candidate and issue campaigns. Additionally, he has served in leadership positions in statewide and local political organizations and advocated for voter education and voter outreach by providing training and resources to student activists. Arnold recently graduated from Southwestern Law School where he served as the president of the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association president on campus. Arnold is a newly admitted attorney in California and is currently actively involved with several bar associations in Los Angeles.
William Hsu | Director-at-Large – William is currently a State Farm Agent, with his office located in Monterey Park, California. He attended the University of California San Diego from 2003 to 2008, double majoring in Political Science and Visual Arts. Growing up in Montebello and Pasadena led him through many hardships throughout his youth and young adulthood. Only through having strong relationships with family, friends, and mentors was he able to overcome many of the challenges that he had faced. Although his community involvement was very minimal during my high school and college years, he found himself becoming more and more actively involved since his undergraduate commencement. Some of these activities include volunteering at the San Diego Children’s Museum, painting classrooms and other activities at the San Gabriel Asian Youth Center, and donating to other local community events. The reason for his interest in OCA is the opportunity to become more consistently active in community service, to network with his local community, and to hopefully make a difference in social, cultural, and economic growth within the Los Angeles area.
William Tran | Director-at-Large – William Tran serves as Counsel, Legal Affairs at NBCUniversal. He is responsible for handling television production-related legal issues for unscripted (“reality”) television programming for the Bravo cable television network. He advises clients on intellectual property, defamation, privacy, contract, newsgathering, and regulatory issues; drafts production-related agreements (including indemnity agreements, participant agreements, and appearance releases); vets rough cuts; and handles claims prior to litigation. Prior to that, he practiced in all areas of labor and employment law in the Los Angeles office of the law firm of Sidley Austin LLP. William received his B.A. in 2003 from Swarthmore College, where he graduated with high honors and was elected to phi beta kappa. He majored in history and minored in Chinese and linguistics. He then received his J.D. in 2006 from the University of Michigan Law School, where he graduated cum laude. At Michigan Law, William served as an editor on the Michigan Law Review and was active with both the Asian Pacific American Law Students Association and Outlaws. William is former Chair and current Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors of the Asian Pacific American Dispute Resolution Center (APADRC). William is also a general member of API-Equality Los Angeles, a non-profit organization dedicated to achieving marriage equality.
Chris Fong | Director-at-Large – Christopher L. Fong, Esq. has been an entertainment attorney for Sony Pictures Entertainment since 2008. Chris has been actively involved with non-profit and community service organizations since he first started as an Eagle Scout. In 2001, Chris served as a White House Intern under President Clinton, working on automatic weapons and Medicare issues. That same year, Chris graduated from the Center for Asian Pacific American Leadership (CAPAL) Training Program based in Washington, D.C. and went on to take an interest in API community issues. In addition to OCA, Chris is also on the board of the Asian Professional Exchange and a former board member for the Asian Pacific American Bar Association. Chris has volunteered for various other organizations such as the Beverly Hills Bar Association, SCCLA, KABA, JABA, TAP, CAPE, VC Film Festival, SFIAAFF, Habitat for Humanity-LA, and Big Brothers of America. Born and raised in West Los Angeles, Chris graduated from U.C. Berkeley with dual degrees in political science and business. He then attended Southwestern University School of Law in Los Angeles and became a member of the California Bar in 2007. In his free time, Chris enjoys paint-balling and playing video games and non-traditional sports, as he currently plays on teams for both the World Adult Kickball Association and World Dodgeball Society.