top speakers | February 09, 2023

Asian-American Heritage Month: Our Dynamic Speakers on Diversity, Storytelling, and Leadership

This May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, which offers us a chance to celebrate the immense contributions of AAPI communities and look to our future in a diverse, equal society. Lavin is proud to represent so many of the dynamic and brilliant voices exploring identity, culture, and leadership: from the C-suite to Oscar-nominated filmmakers to authors whose books have been named to countless Top 10 lists. In their talks, they help us reflect on how far we’ve come in terms of diversity and equality, and engage with the work of social justice that still needs to be done. 

  • aapi blog speaker headshots 03

Hua Hsu

Hua Hsu is the author of the hit memoir Stay True, which follows his university friendship with another Asian-American student. The New York Times named it one of the ten best books of the year, and Vulture called it "an evolutionary step for Asian-American literature." In talks, Hua shows how we can not only accept but embrace our messy, complex cultures and identities. 

  • aapi blog speaker headshots 04

Jeff Chang

Jeff Chang has long been a crucial voice for racial solidarity in AAPI circles. He's a key commentator in the PBS series Asian Americans and the author of several books, including the highly anticipated Water Mirror Echo: Bruce Lee and the Making of Asian America. The New Yorker calls Jeff’s quest for multiracial community both "urgent and passionate."

  • aapi blog speaker headshots 05

Laura Huang

Laura Huang says that although Asian-Americans face systemic biases and inaccurate perceptions, you can use even that to your advantage. A Harvard professor and the author of Edge, Laura explores the research that's been done on AAPI experiences in the workplace, and proves that by being your authentic self, you can turn your unique background into a unique advantage.

  • aapi blog speaker headshots 06

Wajahat Ali

Wajahat Ali grew up the son of Pakistani immigrants, never seeing Asian-Americans like himself as the heroes of the story. Today, in his talks and his memoir Go Back to Where You Came From, he urges the AAPI community to tell their stories and help create a multicultural coalition of the willing, where hope and true equity will ensure we can all be the heroes of the American story.

  • aapi blog speaker headshots 07

Stephanie Mehta

Stephanie Mehta has her finger on the pulse of the business world. She was the editor-in-chief of Fast Company, the most influential business magazine of our generation, before being promoted to CEO of its parent company. Her experience on the cutting edge of business gives her a unique perspective on discussions of diversity, leadership, and AAPI issues.

  • aapi blog speaker headshots 08

Eddie Huang

Eddie Huang is the New York Times bestselling author of Fresh Off the Boat, his memoir of growing up Asian-American that became the longest-running Asian-American sitcom ever. He’s also a celebrity chef, director, producer, and so much more! Eddie’s uproarious, inspiring talks show how you can chase your dreams by making your own rules and being fully yourself.

  • aapi blog speaker headshots 09

Mira Nair

Mira Nair is the Oscar-nominated Indian-American director of Salaam Bombay!, whose incredible films explore culture, race, and the importance of diverse stories. From her hit film The Namesake (starring Kal Penn) to her critically acclaimed Monsoon Wedding, she proves that art can challenge stereotypes, amplify diverse voices, and bring us together.

  • aapi blog speaker headshots 10

Anand Giridharadas

Anand Giridharadas, New York Times bestselling author of The Persuaders, has developed a new art of persuasion. He offers tools that Asian-Americans can use to build communities of racial solidarity and make real change even in a time of deep division. By getting better at communicating and bridging divides, he says, we can find hope together and forge the future we want.

Up Next

top speakers | February 07, 2023