Happy Lunar New Year
With the incoming Year of the Rabbit, AOF will be busier than ever. I’m proud to announce our plans to grow and expand our mission to support federal and statewide candidates and elected officials who represent the interests of communities of color, and who inspire participation in government for the benefit of all Americans.
As recent as November 21, 2010, the Los Angeles Times reported that “The Party that Wins Asian Voters May Benefit for Decades”. In “What if the Latino Vote Stays Home?”, an op-ed in the Washington Post, the author warns that many Latino voters were still undecided and that parties cannot take the Latino vote for granted.
Through our programming, training, and endorsements, AOF aims to show that communities of color can make a difference in electing public officials who care about the issues of health care disparity, providing a quality education to future generations and making positive changes for this country.
Recruiting and Trainers the Next Generation of Political Leaders
AOF has for several years, hosted Candidate and Campaign Organizer trainings across the country. We have been working with community groups to target potential progressives and candidates of color to run for office. In 2010, Evan Low, mayor of Campbell, CA participated in our Candidate Training. At 27, Low is one of the youngest gay and youngest Asian American mayors. Barbara Tanabe also participated in one of our trainings and went on to advise Neil Abercrombie’s Hawaii gubernatorial campaign.
Education & Outreach
I am pleased to announce a new program for AOF, our “In the Dome” conversation series. The “In the Dome” series will be completely free and open to the public. We wanted to create more opportunities for the public to engage with political leaders and elected officials. Our first “In the Dome” session is slated for Feb. 16 and we have invited Rep. Karen Bass (CA-33) and Rep. Hansen Clarke (MI-13) to talk with us about their experiences running for office.
Communications & Rebranding AOF
As part of a continuing effort to provide consistent information about AOF and our programs, we have hired a Communications Director, former AOF fellow, Alvina Yeh to join our team. Alvina will be focusing on building AOF’s presence through timely communications about our work, informing and engaging our community through email and social media, and supporting AOF’s programs.
Growing from a vision that then Governor Gary Locke and I had in 2007 to establishing an organization with a working advisory team and staff, AOF has been an ever-evolving organization. Secretary Locke has since then moved on to become our current Secretary of Commerce and AOF is proud to see him serve our country in this capacity.
Last year, we wanted to signify AOF’s growth with a rebrand of our logo and this year we continue that effort with a new website launching in two week’s time. The website will be updated with upcoming events, trainings, and relevant political news.
Supporting Progressive Candidates
As the year progresses and AOF continues to assess the political landscape, we will endorse and support candidates in pivotal races through fundraising, field and/or media support.
Thank you for your support,
Norman Y. Mineta
Chair, America's Opportunity Fund