Backstage Pass with Lia Chang

Asian American Arts Alliance (AAAA) to Receive the 2016 LEAP Community Award at the LEAP 2016 LEADERSHIP AWARDS GALA on July 21


Congratulations to Andrea Louie, Executive Director of the  Asian American Arts Alliance (AAAA), and her team at the New York based Asian American Arts Alliance (AAAA), who will receive the 2016 LEAP Community Award at the LEAP 2016 LEADERSHIP AWARDS GALA on Thursday, July 21, 2016, at the Omni Hotel 251 South Olive Street Los Angeles, CA 90012.

The 2016 gala dinner celebrates LEAP’s 34 years of “Growing Leaders” and the leadership and accomplishments of individuals and organizations that exemplify LEAP’s mission to achieve full participation and equality for Asian and Pacific Islanders through leadership, empowerment, and policy.

Other honorees include Phyllis J. Campbell, Chairman, Pacific Northwest, JP Morgan Chase & Co.; Willie C. Chiang
Executive VP & COO, U.S. Plains All American Gp Llc; A. Gabriel Esteban, President, Seton Hall University, who will receive The 2016 LEAP Individual Leadership Award,  and KC Choi, Senior Vice President of Global Systems Engineering, Dell/EMC, who will receive David R. Barclay Alumni Leadership Award.

Proceeds from the event are used to develop LEAP’s innovative leadership programs, cutting-edge public policy research, and nationwide community building.

5pm VIP Reception

5:30pm Silent Auction

6pm General Reception

7pm – 9pm  Dinner Program

Hotel Valet Parking is available, or you may choose to self park next door at the California Plaza.

To RSVP and purchase tickets to the 2016 gala, please contact Grace Toy at


Community Award

Asian American Arts Alliance
New York, NY

The Asian American Arts Alliance is dedicated to strengthening Asian American arts and cultural groups through resource sharing, promotion, and community building. Since 1983, the Alliance has sought to unify, promote, and represent the artistic and cultural producers of one of New York City’s fastest-growing ethnic populations. The organization is a diverse alliance of artists, organizations, and arts supporters who believe that working together as a pan-ethnic, multidisciplinary community is essential to nurturing the development of artists and arts organizations and to providing meaningful and innovative ways for civic engagement in society.

The Asian American Alliance helps support individual artists and arts organizations access and share resources both online and in person. The Alliance builds community through programs that encourage peer-learning, collaboration, and professional development.

When it was founded 33 years ago, the Alliance focused on providing a safe space for Asian Americans to build community and share resources; in addition, for 15 years, the Alliance was a re-granter, administering nearly $800,000 to individuals and small groups. Today, the Alliance is positioned as a thoughtful and meaningful convener of the Asian American cultural workforce around issues of race, identity, and artmaking.

For more information about the Asian American Arts Alliance, visit

Individual Leadership Awards

Phyllis J. Campbell
Chairman, Pacific Northwest
JP Morgan Chase & Co.

Phyllis Campbell is the Chairman, Pacific Northwest for JP Morgan Chase & Co. She is the firm’s senior executive in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho across businesses, representing JPMorgan Chase & Co. at the most senior level to clients.

Previously, Phyllis served as the President/CEO of The Seattle Foundation, the largest community foundation in Washington. During her tenure, the Foundation doubled in charitable assets, to $600 million. Prior to that, Phyllis was the President/CEO of U.S. Bank of Washington for over six years. Under her leadership, the Bank doubled in size, through customer-focused growth initiatives and acquisitions.

Phyllis has a proven track record of board service, both in the for profit and not-for-profit sectors. She is the lead independent director for Alaska Air Group, a NYSE listed company. She serves on the Nordstrom board of directors and on the North American Diversity Advisory Board (DAB) of Toyota. Phyllis is on the nonprofit boards of PATH, the US-Japan Council, and the global advisory board of Women Corporate Directors (WCD), among others. She is a member of the NACD Audit Committee Chair National Advisory Council. She is a frequently requested speaker on governance, banking and risk-related topics and has spoken at a number of global conferences.

Her awards have included the following: the inaugural NACD Director of the Year Award from the Pacific Northwest chapter. Top Women in Finance Award from Women of Color Magazine in 2010 and Woman Who Makes A Difference Award from the International Women’s Forum. She was also awarded the 36th Regents’ Distinguished Alumnus Award from Washington State University.

Phyllis holds an M.B.A. from the University of Washington’s Executive MBA Program, a B.A. in Business Administration from Washington State University, and is a graduate of the Pacific Coast Banking School at the University of Washington, as well as Stanford University’s Executive Management Program. Phyllis also holds honorary doctorates from Whitworth University and Gonzaga University.

Willie C. Chiang
Executive VP & COO
U.S. Plains All American Gp Llc

Prior to joining Oxy in 2012, Mr. Chiang held increasingly responsible positions at ConocoPhillips, most recently as Senior Vice President, Refining, Marketing, Transportation and Commercial. Previous ConocoPhillips roles included President, Downstream Strategy & Specialties, and a number of key Refining Management roles. Prior to joining ConocoPhillips, he spent 6 years with Powerine Oil Company in Los Angeles and 9 years at Chevron. He has also served on the boards of DCP Midstream and Chevron Phillips Chemical and has been very involved with the American Petroleum Institute.

Mr. Chiang holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the South Dakota School of Mines and completed the Advanced Management Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business.

A. Gabriel Esteban
Seton Hall University

A. Gabriel Esteban was appointed 20th president of Seton Hall University in January 2011, after serving as interim president for six months and provost since 2007. He has charged the University’s more than 900 faculty and 1,800 employees and nearly 10,000 students to aspire to excellence in scholarship and service. Dr. Esteban is committed to the institution’s 158-year Catholic mission.

Dr. Esteban has worked to strengthen programs that support the Catholic mission of the University. This includes the creation of the department of Catholic Studies; the establishment of the Archbishop John J. Myers Distinguished Lecture series; and, the implementation of an initiative that focuses on hiring for mission. SAT scores have increased by almost 100 points and undergraduate enrollment has increased 15 percent.

Most recently, Dr. Esteban has been recognized as a 2015 “Great Immigrant” by the Carnegie Corporation of New York. Esteban was recently named one of the 100 most powerful in business in New Jersey and one of the 50 most powerful in Health Care in NJ by NJBIZ. He was knighted to the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem. He was presented with a certificate of achievement award by the Embassy of the Philippines in 2013 and he received the Servant Leader Award from St. Paul’s Outreach in April 2014. He received a Ph.D. in Administration from the University of California at Irvine and a MS in Japanese business studies from Chaminade University. Dr. Esteban earned a MBA and a BS in mathematics from the University of the Philippines. He also received specialized training at Harvard University’s Graduate School of Education.

He and his wife Josephine (MBA, MA) have a daughter, Ysabella ’12 who is studying medicine at Creighton University.

David R. Barclay Alumni Leadership Award

KC Choi
Senior Vice President of Global Systems Engineering

KC Choi has recently taken on a new role as Senior Vice President of Global Systems Engineering for the combined Dell/EMC companies. Previous to this new role, KC was Vice President, Global Solutions Architecture & Engineering and also had responsibility for Global Sales, Technical and Partner Training and Enablement at Hewlett-Packard.

KC was with HP for 25 years in a variety of technical and management roles including leading the Oracle/Compaq business unit for three years. KC has also served as VP and Chief Technology Officer for SeniorCo Inc. (, and held sales and technical positions with NCR Corporation and IBM Corporation. While at NCR, KC developed expertise in sales and engineering positions for both retail and financial systems business units.

KC graduated from the University of California, Irvine with a BS in Electrical Engineering and a BA in Economics. He guest lectures regularly at Loyola Marymount University’s MBA program on various IT topics. KC is an alumnus of the Leadership Development Program and a former LEAP board member.

Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits

Lia Chang_photo by Garth Kravits

Lia Chang is an actor, a multi-media content producer and co-founder of Bev’s Girl Films, making films that foster inclusion and diversity on both sides of the camera. Bev’s Girl Films’ debut short film, Hide and Seek was a top ten film in the Asian American Film Lab’s 2015 72 Hour Shootout Filmmaking Competition, and she received a Best Actress nomination. BGF collaborates with and produces multi-media content for artists, actors, designers, theatrical productions, composers,  musicians and corporations. Lia is also an internationally published and exhibited photographer, a multi-platform journalist, and a publicist. Lia has appeared in the films Wolf, New Jack City, A Kiss Before Dying, King of New York, Big Trouble in Little China, The Last Dragon, Taxman and Hide and Seek. She is profiled in Examiner.comJade Magazine and

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