Ascend Solidarity Statement
June 3, 2020
Ascend stands in solidarity against racism and violence. The tragic and senseless deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor and other acts of bias and violence against Blacks have shaken our country to its core. We are seeing with alarming frequency incidents that shed light on the inequality, racism, institutional bias and prejudice that many fellow Americans have endured for generations. There is no place for this. Each of these instances reaffirms to me the need for greater empathy, enlightment and understanding, and the continued importance of closing the economic gaps that impact our workforce. We need to do much more collectively by listening to each other, acknowledging the work that we as a society must do, and taking action in a positive and constructive way. We cannot be complacent and must not be mere bystanders.
Covid-19 has impacted all of us in ways we could never have imagined. It has devastated our Black, Latinx, and Native American communities at disproportionate rates and brought abuse to our Asian American community. Recent heartbreaking events, together with the global COVID-19 pandemic, amplify the need for Ascend members to exercise resiliency and resolve and do better for our communities. Ascend doesn’t have all the answers to solve for these highly complex and nuanced societal issues, but I do know that we have an important role to play. With our collaboration partners and 100+ supporting companies, we adopted our joint 5-Point Action Agenda. The core tenets of Promote Inclusion, Raise Awareness, Denounce Bias, Support Communities, and Give Donations apply now more than ever to our vulnerable and hurting communities. We are here for our black friends and colleagues, our corporate partners, members and the community at large to work together on solutions to make the change we want and need.
I am in active discussions with key CEO driven coalitions such as CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion, senior company executives, our partners and Ascend members on how, as leaders, we will become more race conversant and reduce inequities in the workplace. On Friday, June 5th, Ascend will be hosting the first in a series of Ascend Dialogs to discuss how we can work together as a pan-Asian and broader community to mobilize and accelerate change in our workplaces and beyond.
As each of us internalizes and tries to make sense of what has happened, I personally urge you to:
Learn and increase fluency about the human experiences and history of the Black community and other communities of color
Elevate your understanding of our commonalities and appreciate our differences
Adopt our 5-point Action Agenda and develop your personal actions
Devise strategies for candid conversations with friends, family, and colleagues about racial injustice and disparities
Together we can accelerate change, begin the healing process and make meaningful and sustainable contributions to build a more equitable and inclusive society. Now more than ever, we need to ascend to the challenges before us.
Anna W. Mok
President, Ascend Foundation
Message from Ascend LA Metro Chapter President
To the Los Angeles Ascend Community,
As 2020 comes to an end, I find myself reflecting on how many of us have had to re-invent ourselves to adjust to changes resulting from COVID-19, the social issues which became front page news and our shelter at home work and family environment. I am proud that Ascend as an organization has also re-invented ourselves through programming and public statements which has changed us in a positive way as we head into 2021.
I hope that many of you were able to participate in our two-day Inspiring Across Generations (IAG) conference titled “Evolving to Succeed – Navigating the New Normal” where we collaborated again with our Orange County chapter. We had two inspiring female fireside speakers, Thuy Vu and Deborah Png (yes – no vowel) who not only provided life lessons about their career journey, but spoke specifically about how COVID-19 has changed their own “new normal”. The conference also allowed for a number of (virtual) networking opportunities that the participants enjoyed. I wanted to thank both Thuy and Deborah along with all of our other speakers who contributed key insights during the conference. I also wanted to thank all of our volunteers and our sponsors for allowing us to host such an impactful IAG.
We expect 2021 to be a busy year for the Los Angeles chapter. We are in the process of putting together a calendar of events in the coming weeks so please look out for it in our website. Our events will include professional development webinars, cultural events, networking events, and social awareness events. There should be something on the calendar for everyone. Having said that, we are always looking for ideas for new events that support our mission - so please let us know if you have something in mind.
My hope is that you are able to regularly read my message through our email blast that goes out to our LA Metro Ascend membership. You can also find out what is going on with our chapter through the following:
October 1 began our new fiscal year. With our new fiscal years comes a time where we will be looking to all of our local sponsors and members to renew for the upcoming year. We hope that our 2021 calendar of events will excite you to renew your membership as we move forward to our National Convention (again) here in Southern California this upcoming summer. So please continue to support the LA Metro Ascend Chapter for 2020/2021!
I hope all of you have a safe and Happy Holidays!
LA Metro Chapter President
Ascend LA Metro
100+ Corporations & Partner Organizations Support COVID-19 Action Agenda
Ascend, ALPFA, Catalyst, The Conference Board, MLT, NABA, NCAI, NOD, Out & Equal and Tanenbaum Collaborate on COVID-19 Action Response
Ascend is the largest, non-profit Pan-Asian membership organization for business professionals in North America.
As a career lifecycle organization, Ascend offers robust leadership and professional development programs designed to cultivate Pan-Asian talent by supporting its members in reaching their career potential and by supporting its corporate partners to develop a strong, diverse, and inclusive workforce to achieve business growth.
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