Rise & Revolutionize

#AAJA17 | Philadelphia | July 26-29

story slam at #aaja17

Congratulations to the six finalists in AAJA's first Story Slam. They will compete for prizes in the AAJA Story Slam Live Finals on Friday, July 28th, at the AAJA National Convention in Philadelphia. Please join us to hear their terrific stories and cheer them on! 


Kyung Yoon

Reporter, CUNY-TV's "Asian American Life," and Executive Director, Korean American Community Foundation

New York chapter

Story: "Mama Mia! See My Face Beyond the Race"

Akira Olivia Kumamoto

Freelance Video Journalist

San Francisco Bay Area chapter

Story: "Paper Doll."



Emil Guillermo 

Independent Journalist, Emil Guillermo Media/Amok Productions, AALDEF.org/blog

San Francisco Bay Area chapter

Story: "Stephen and the American Filipino Story" 

Angie Lau

Anchor/Reporter, Bloomberg TV in Hong Kong

Asia chapter

Story: "I am Not Supposed to be Here"

Ti-Hua Chang

Freelance Reporter

New York chapter

Story: "A Day Remembered"


Cheska Perez

Student, Franklin & Marshall College

At-Large chapter

Story:  "Undocumented" 



Michael Kim

Michael Kim

Host, 120 Sports / Stadium

Michael Kim is an award-winning sports journalist with nearly 30 years of experience. After receiving his master's degree at the University of Missouri School of Journalism, Kim began his career in Washington DC before spending 17 years at ESPN. He left in 2013 to help launch 120 Sports. 




Lyman Chen

Lyman is a Film and Television actor and member of SAG-AFTRA.  Some of Lyman's notable work are from The Departed, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Comedian, CBS' Rush Hour, MacGyver and Fox's APB.

Currently, Lyman is on USA Network's Mr. Robot as Xun of the Dark Army and also can be next seen on the Feature, Untouchable starring Kevin Hart and Bryan Cranston. 


Sunanda Ghosh

Sunanda is nonprofit consultant who has worked with organizations including Human Rights Watch, Habitat for Humanity International, American Friends Service Committee, Mural Arts Philadelphia, Asian Arts Initiative, Philadelphia Contemporary, Institute of Hip Hop Entrepreneurship and Drexel University. She currently serves on the boards of Skateistan, the Philadelphia Rail Park and Asian Arts Initiative. Sunanda has worked in India, South Africa, and Brazil. She speaks fluent Bengali and is now based in Philadelphia



Raju Narisetti

Raju is the CEO of Gizmodo Media Group of Univision Communications Inc, a group sites that includes some of the the web's most beloved and authentic brands such as Gizmodo, Jezebel, Deadspin, Jalopnik and The Root. A media executive with a track record in creating, rethinking and managing major media organizations on three continents, Raju was most recently Senior Vice-President of Strategy at News Corp. Prior to that, he was Managing Editor of The Wall Street Journal Digital Network.

Angilee Shah

Angilee, Digital Editor at Global Nation, Public Radio International's coverage of immigration in the U.S. She has reported on culture and politics from across Asia and the U.S. and is currently based in Minneapolis. She is also a consulting editor to the Journal of Asian Studies


Thank you also to the judging panel who selected these finalists: 

Jane Sujen Bock, freelance writer and organizer of the Harvard Asian American Alumni Alliance's first Voices Story Slam
Aaron Foley, Neighborhood Storyteller for the City of Detroit
Jen Kim, marketing/communications director, Asian American International Film Festival; winner of the Council of Korean Americans/KoreanAmericanStory.org's first ROAR Story Slam
Sonia Khaleel, Copy Editor, Detroit Metro Times and improv performer




As journalists, we bring to life every imaginable kind of story about events, issues and people in the news. But we’re rarely given a forum to share tales from our own lives.

We are proud to present our first AAJA Story Slam at #AAJA17. Through the AAJA Story Slam, we will turn our storytelling skills on ourselves and highlight the best personal stories from the Asian American and Pacific Islander journalist community.

The top storytellers will compete for cash prizes in an exciting live event on Friday, July 28, 2017, at the AAJA National Convention. 

First place winner: $1,000
Second place winner: $500
Third place winner: $250


AAJA members with a story to tell. Your 2017 membership must be current before entering the Story Slam, but there is no additional entry fee.


Stories are personal and true and reflect an AAPI experience, keeping the #AAJA17 theme in mind: “Rise and Revolutionize.” Finalists will tell stories about something that happened to them or that they observed or learned, or about something that happened to someone else but affected them. They will be stories that move us, that will make us laugh, cry or think differently about something we thought we knew.


Monday, May 1 (by 11:59 pm PT): Video submissions due to aajastoryslam2017@gmail.com.

Thursday, June 1: Finalists notified.

Friday, July 28, 5:30-6:30pm ET: The AAJA Story Slam will take place before attendees of the AAJA National Convention in Philadelphia. A judging panel will select winners, who will be announced at the event.

The contest organizers reserve the right to adjust the judging process, timeline and prizes.



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