The following Executive Director’s report was submitted to the Commission at its January 21, 2017, board meeting at the General Administration Building in Olympia. The report covers a time period from November 18, 2016 to January 20, 2017. View in PDF format.


  • Budget: The Commission is operating within its current fiscal year budget of $231,000. The projected ending balance on June 30, 2017, is $27. Staff is watching expenditures closely to ensure the Commission does not overspend its allotment. The non-state allocation amount is $18,106, which reflects a $500 sponsorship to support the UPRISE Pacific Islander Education Summit in October.


  • 2017-19 Budget: The Governor’s budget proposal includes the Commission’s request for funds to conduct an AAPI needs assessment and expand its outreach activities. It also includes funding for desktop support services and rent increases when the Commission moves to Capitol Court in 2018.
  • Intern: The Commission is pleased to announce the selection of Anuilagi Nguyen as our intern for the 2017 legislative session. Anuilagi attends The Evergreen State College with a focus in International Studies, Feminist Studies, and Social Justice. Before attending Evergreen, she served in the United States Air Force and the United States Coast Guard. Currently, she volunteers with the Family Support Center in Thurston County.


  • Legislative Session: The 2017-19 session began on January 9, 2017, and is scheduled for 105 days. Lawmakers will write a new two-year budget and determine how to adequately fund K-12 education to comply with the McCleary decision.
  • Governor’s Budget: The governor’s proposed 2017-2019 operating budget was released in December. The proposal fully funds basic education, freezes college/university tuition, restructures services for children and families, combats homelessness, and overhauls the state’s troubled mental health system. The governor’s proposed budget includes new revenue in order to fund the priorities. The capital budget includes investments in the Asia Pacific Cultural Center, Aging in Pace, and Filipino Community of Seattle projects.
  • Events:
    • Ethnic Legislative Reception: Community members, commissioners, and public officials are invited to the reception hosted by the commissions and GOIA on February 7 in Olympia. The event is an opportunity for Commissioners and community members to network with the governor and elected officials. RSVP information is available on the Commission’s website.
    • APA Legislative Day: APAs from across the state will rally in Olympia on February 23 to engage with their legislators about budget and policy concerns. The event is organized by the Asian Pacific Islander Coalition.
  • Joint Legislative Task Forces:
    • Task Force on the Use of Deadly Force in Community Policing: The Task Force’s final meeting occurred on November 21. Its report, released on December 1, to the Legislature and Governor recommended changing the state law on deadly force to increase police accountability while still protecting officers who reasonably believe using deadly force is necessary. CAPAA co-hosted two community meetings in Seattle and Fife in January to provide the public with information about the task force’s recommendations. Toshiko Hasegawa represented CAPAA, JACL Seattle, and the Asian Pacific Directors Coalition on the Task Force.
    • The Task Force on the Use of Body Worn Cameras: The Task Force last met in October. Sokha Danh and Molly Harper Haines represent CAPAA on the Task Force. A report is due December 2017.


  • Community Connections: Staff met with numerous community leaders and community-based organizations to hear about issues and concerns facing their unique communities. When necessary, casework and policy issues are brought to the attention of the Governor’s Office, federal agencies, state agencies, legislative members, and municipalities.
    • Asian Pacific Directors Coalition (APDC): Members received a legislative session preview, an update on the Task Force on the Use of Deadly Force, and discussed its role to address concerns with the incoming administration at its meetings in December and January.
    • Filipino Veterans Recognition and Education Project: After decades of advocacy, Congress passed, and President Obama signed into law in December 2016 the Filipino Veterans of World War II Congressional Gold Medal Act. Local Filipino American leaders, including former CAPAA directors, helped achieve this historic act. Commission staff met with community leaders and the director of the state Department of Veterans Affairs on this issue. Governor Inslee also wrote a letter to our state’s Congressional delegation urging them to support the act.
    • Asian Pacific Islander Coalition (APIC): Planning is underway to organize APA Legislative Day on February 23 in Olympia, including a series of briefings to inform the community about its legislative priorities.
    • Kin On: Staff took a tour of the new community center and existing facility and learned about the comprehensive services offered to support elders and adults in the greater Seattle Asian community.
    • Radio Hankook: Commissioner Wada has launched a twice a month program on Korean language radio. The program will inform listeners about state government programs and services. The first show on January 9 featured CAPAA.
    • Community Events: Staff attended numerous community events to connect with constituents and learn about community issues and concerns. Events included the Forefront Annual Event, NW Asian Weekly Top Contributors, and 10th Annual Korean American Day.
  • Agency Outreach: Staff continues to connect with members of the Commission’s Asian Pacific American State Agency Liaison Network (APASAL Network). These check-ins serve as an important way to cover current policies and programs for the AAPI community, partnership opportunities, assistance requests, recommendations, and policy issues with state agencies.
    • Department of Commerce: Chair Tufono and three community leaders represent the Commission on the Minority Business Roundtable. The Roundtable met on December 2 to review data and discussed best practices on outreach to minority business owners.
    • Department of Health: The Commission confirmed that the 2017 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System survey will include Cambodian as an ethnicity option for respondents, which will build on data collected from the 2016 BRFSS.Staff coordinated with DOH staff and local public health around the mumps outbreak.Staff attended an Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention meeting in December to hear updates on legislation, progress reports, and ongoing public/private partnerships to prevent suicide.
    • Department of Labor and Industries: The Language Access Advisory Committee met on December 6. Members heard a presentation on Culturally & Linguistically Appropriate Services and discussed ways to improve customer service for LEP communities.
    • Human Rights Commission: A special meeting to discuss with community groups a response to hate crimes and bias incidents is scheduled for January 31 in Seattle. Visit for more details.
    • Office of Education Ombuds: Commissioner Gurung and OEO convened a roundtable meeting with the Nepalese community on December 3 in Lake Forest Park. The community heard about OEO’s services and how Nepalese students can access the World Language Credit Program to earn high school credits for world languages.
    • Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction: Public comment on the draft Every Student Succeeds Act Consolidated Plan has been extended until September 2017. Community-based organizations are expected to host community meetings to provide additional opportunities for public engagement. Visit for more information.
    • Serve Washington: Nominations for the Governor’s Volunteer Service Awards are being accepted through February 9. Awards will be presented in categories such as AmeriCorps Alum, Education, Human Services, Veteran, and VISTA Volunteers. More details are available at


  • Board Meetings: The Commission’s 2017 board meeting schedule is posted at The next meeting will occur on March 18, 2017. The location will be announced soon.


  • Education:
    • AAPI Data Disaggregation Initiative: OSPI will convene a partners meeting soon to discuss the objectives and role of the school districts and community partners in fulfilling the objectives of the grant, which include analyzing existing disaggregated data and developing strategies to improve academic outcomes.
    • Asian American Studies at UW: Faculty, youth, community leaders, and CAPAA staff met in December to discuss the UW’s process for recruitment and selection for the two open positions.
    • Educational Opportunity Gap Oversight and Accountability Committee (EOGOAC): Sili Savusa and former Commissioner Frieda Takamura represent CAPAA. The committee met on January 17 to review and discuss its new recommendations. The next meeting is February 21.
    • Educator Workforce Development Workgroup: Commissioner Roslyn Leon Guerrero represents CAPAA on this workgroup to recruit, retain, and diversify Washington’s educator workforce.
    • GATE Workshop – Strengthening Mental Health Systems: Staff attended the GATE Workshop to hear about efforts from schools and school districts to provide mental health support for students.
    • Race and Ethnicity Student Data Task Force: CAPAA representatives on the RESD Task Force will host focus groups in February with Asian and Pacific Islander communities to gather feedback on the task force’s guidelines. The next meeting is scheduled for February 1 in Olympia. Visit for more information.
    • Student Discipline Task Force: To implement House Bill 1541, the task force has reconvened to review and recommend data collection standards and provide feedback in regards to changes in student discipline rules. The Task Force met on January 10. Commissioner Lynette Finau and Zharina Angeles represent the Commission on the task force.
  • Health and Human Services:
    • Asian Pacific Islander Coalition Advocating Together for Healthy Communities (APICAT): The next APICAT meeting is scheduled for January 24 in Federal Way.
    • Governor’s Interagency Council on Health Disparities: Commissioner Lori Wada is CAPAA’s representative on the Council. The council met on December 14 and heard from Results WA and the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Committee. The next meeting is February 8 in Tumwater.
    • Health Equity for COFA migrants: Rep. Sharon Tomiko Santos has sponsored House Bill 1291 to improve health equity for COFA migrants. The bill is scheduled for a public hearing on January 25 in the House Committee on Health Care & Wellness at 1:30 PM. More details at
    • Pacific Islander Health Board: Staff is coordinating with the Pacific Islander Health Board and Public Health Seattle King County to prevent mumps outbreaks among Pacific Islander communities.
  • Economic Development
    • Business Diversity Subcabinet: Members of the sub cabinet and a workgroup are continuing to meet to achieve Gov. Inslee’s goal of increasing access for small and minority-, women- and veteran-owned businesses to contracting opportunities with Washington state government.