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Auburn Sentinel

CAPIAA Welcomes its New Executive Director

Jan 08, 2024 06:24PM ● By CAPIAA News Release

The Honorable Robert Rivas, right, speaker of the California State Assembly, administers the oath of office to Khydeeja Alam. Photo courtesy of Speaker’s Office, California State Assembly

SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - The California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs (CAPIAA) is thrilled to announce the appointment of Khydeeja Alam as its new executive director. Khydeeja Alam was sworn in by the Honorable Robert Rivas, speaker of the California State Assembly, at the State Capitol surrounded by family and friends.

“California’s diverse AAPI communities enrich and strengthen our state in countless ways and have a pivotal role in driving our state and nation forward,” said Governor Gavin Newsom. “Director Alam brings more than a decade of experience working on a variety of priority issues for the state, and deep ties to nonprofit and philanthropic partners that will help further the Commission’s important work. I thank her for her dedicated service to our state, and commitment to elevating the needs and concerns of our dynamic AAPI communities.”

Khydeeja brings a wealth of experience and leadership in advocacy, non-profit, and state government to this role, and the commission is confident in her ability to lead CAPIAA in its mission to elevate the political, economic, and social issues of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. 

“I extend a heartfelt congratulations to Ms. Khydeeja Alam for this exciting appointment. I have had the pleasure of witnessing her career unfold through the years as a former colleague,” said Speaker of the California State Assembly Robert Rivas. “She is passionate, determined and a fierce advocate for her community. There is no one better suited to represent the best interests of over 6 million Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders who call California home. As speaker, I look forward to working alongside her in this new capacity.”

One of the key focus areas for CAPIAA under Alam’s leadership will be to educate, raise awareness, and advocate for the rights and safety of AAPI communities. The Commission will work towards an inclusive and supportive environment for all residents of the state.

“The Commission is excited about the fresh perspective and dynamic leadership that Khydeeja Alam brings to the table. Khydeeja will undoubtedly play a crucial role in advancing CAPIAA’s mission to ensure the voices and needs of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are at the forefront of discussions and investments by California decision makers,” said CAPIAA Chair Serena Kirk.

As executive director, Alam will spearhead efforts to maximize outreach efforts with Asian and Pacific Islander American communities, including informational campaigns about public and private programs that benefit community interests, and addressing issues of access and cultural language sensitivity within state agencies, departments, and other commissions. Most importantly, Alam will bring visibility around the incredible work the commission continues to do on behalf of California’s AAPI communities.

“The California Asian American and Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus (AAPILC) welcomes Khydeeja Alam as the new executive director for the Commission on Asian Pacific Islander American Affairs (CAPIAA). The Caucus looks forward to continued partnership with the Commission under the leadership of Khydeeja to ensure that we continue to uplift and mobilize our AAPI community here in California,” said Assemblyman Evan Low, chair of the AAPILC.

Alam will also play a pivotal role in providing assistance to policymakers and state agencies by identifying the needs and issues of AAPI communities, developing appropriate responses, and implementing programs to address these concerns effectively.

“I welcome Khydeeja Alam as the new executive director of CAPIAA. Her lived experiences as an immigrant and her hard work that led her to be where she is today is an incredible benefit to the AAPI community and a celebration of the rich tapestry of perspectives that will guide CAPIAA towards meaningful progress,” said State Treasurer Fiona Ma.

The only ethnic commission established by California state law, CAPIAA’s mission is to address the diverse and complex needs, issues, and concerns of Asian American and Pacific Islander American communities. The commission plays a crucial role in advising the governor and legislature on the views, needs, and concerns of the state’s population of over six million Asian and Pacific Islander Americans.

Khydeeja Alam

Khydeeja Alam was appointed new executive director of the California Commission on Asian and Pacific Islander American Affairs. Photo courtesy of Speaker’s Office, California State Assembly

“Khydeeja Alam’s dedication to public service will serve her well as executive director.  She’s a respected leader in her community and trusted advisor to many lawmakers. I look forward to seeing what she will accomplish in this new role,” said Senate President pro Tempore Toni G. Atkins

Khydeeja Alam: “I am honored and grateful for the opportunity to represent the AAPI community. As CAPIAA’s new executive director, I look forward to continuing the commission’s incredible work, and taking it to the next level, while ensuring that over six million AAPI community members have a strong representation. I believe the stronger the footprint of the commission, the stronger and more resilient the AAPI communities will be. As a first Pakistani American in this role, I wear my identity with pride. This position allows me to pay it forward, uplift, and empower the community and the next generation of AAPI leaders.”