Washington, D.C. – The Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) announced that the organization will partner with Asian & Pacific Islander American Vote (APIAVote) to bring a Presidential Candidate Town Hall to the 2016 AAJA National Convention August 10 – 13 in Las Vegas, NV. This will be the largest convergence of Asian Pacific Islander American professionals in the nation.
Since 2008, the Presidential Candidate Town Hall has served as an avenue for the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community to place AAPI issues on the radar of campaigns and the media. “APIAVote is excited to partner with AAJA in bringing our Town Hall to Las Vegas,” said Christine Chen, APIAVote Executive Director. “AAPI voters are still largely untapped by presidential candidates and their parties, even though this population continues to grow.”
According to Chen, the margin of victory in the state of Nevada in 2012 between the two leading candidates was 67,806—though there are over 149,000 potential AAPI voters to be reached. “We look forward to the participation of the Presidential candidates as they directly address this growing base of new voters,” said Chen.
“I’m excited to partner with APIAVote to welcome the Presidential Candidate Town Hall at AAJA’s 2016 convention,” said Paul Cheung, AAJA National President. “Asian American Pacific Islanders represent the fastest growing minority group in America. Our partnership will bring critical issues facing the AAPI community today onto a national platform during a presidential election year.”
APIAVote partners with local community groups in 22 states and works to expand the AAPI electorate by organizing ongoing voter registrations drives and get-out-the-vote activities. “Based on APIAVote's poll in 2012, over 31% were undecided voters and during every Presidential cycle this Town Hall plays a key role in educating the AAPI electorate and preparing them to vote on Election Day,” said Johnnie Giles, chair of the APIAVote board of directors. “AAPIs are not only visible, but actively present in this election cycle. With AAJA, I’m certain that we will elevate the profile of our communities, and ensure our voices are heard.”
The Asian American Journalists Association is a nonprofit professional and educational organization with more than 1,700 members across the United States and in Asia. Founded in 1981, AAJA has been at the forefront of change in the journalism industry. AAJA’s mission is to encourage Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) to enter the ranks of journalism, to work for fair and accurate coverage of AAPIs, and to increase the number of AAPI journalists and news managers in the industry. AAJA is an alliance partner in UNITY: Journalists for Diversity, along with the Native American Journalists Association and the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association.
Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote (APIAVote) is a national nonpartisan organization that works with community partners in 22 states to mobilize Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) in electoral and civic participation. APIAVote works to expand the AAPI electorate through voter registration, education, and get-out-the-vote-field activities. We also conduct research and polling, a voter protection program, leadership trainings, and youth engagement in an effort to amplify AAPI voices. We envision a world that is inclusive, fair, and collaborative—where AAPI communities are self-determined, empowered, and engaged.