AAJA Philadelphia, a local chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association, was founded in 1995 by Mark Angeles of the Philadelphia Daily News and Siani Lee of NBC10 — the first Asian American television news anchor in Philly. AAJA, a non-profit organization with more than 1,500 members across the world, currently has 19 chapters in the U.S. and an Asia chapter. Learn more about AAJA here.

Our chapter proudly supports Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) journalists in the greater Philadelphia region, which includes portions of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Delaware. We offer opportunities to network with other Asian American media professionals as well as job listings, scholarships and other resources for both students and professionals. Additionally, we advocate against stereotypical or discriminatory coverage of AAPI communities in local media.

A panel on audio storytelling and podcasts, moderated by independent radio producer Alex Lewis (right), featuring (from left) Kathy Tu of WYNC’s “Nancy,” Neena Pathak of The New York Times’ “Still Processing” and Laura Starecheski of Reveal.
NBC10’s Denise Nakano and (now-CBS News correspondent) Ramy Inocencio emceeing the 2017 convention gala in Philadelphia.

In 2017, we successfully hosted AAJA’s annual national convention, welcoming hundreds of members from across the U.S. and Asia to the City of Brotherly Love (and encouraging them to eat many cheesesteaks). We were named Chapter of the Year in 2018, our first time receiving this honor. We celebrated our 25th anniversary in 2020!

Our mission reflects the goals of our members and our profession:

  • To provide support and fellowship for Asian American and Pacific Islander journalists, including students, in the Philadelphia region
  • To promote fair and accurate coverage of AAPI communities in local media
  • To increase the number of AAPI journalists and news managers working in our region

Philadelphia chapter members include freelance and staff reporters, photographers, videographers, editors and producers, as well as students, educators, former journalists and journalism supporters. To learn more about membership, click here.

The best way to find out about upcoming chapter events and opportunities is to join our email list, which you can do by contacting us at philadelphia@aaja.org. You can also find us on Twitter @AAJAPhilly and on Facebook!

Chapter Leadership

President: Jingyao Yu, senior editorial associate, Resolve Philly
Secretary: Samara Ahmed, journalism research assistant, EdSurge
Treasurer: Juliana F. Reyes, investigative reporter, The Philadelphia Inquirer
Vice president of engagement/national advisory board representative: Kristine Villanueva, project editor, Equally Informed initiative, Resolve Philly