Asian Americans Advancing Justice - LA

Building upon the legacy of the Asian Pacific American Legal Center

Message from the Board of Directors (9/3/19)

Tuesday, September 3rd 2019

Message from the Board of Directors

In a message posted on the Advancing Justice-LA blog on August 13, the Board of Directors explained that our organization is currently at a crossroads.

For the past few months, our Board has been grappling with Advancing Justice-LA’s financial and operational challenges, including the fact that we had historically underinvested in our systems, infrastructure and professional development resources for our staff. As the Board shared in its August 13 message, the financial and operational stability of Advancing Justice-LA is at stake.  

There are no easy solutions for the difficult challenges ahead, but our Board, our founder Stewart Kwoh, our Interim Executive Director Sylia Obagi, and our current senior management team are unwavering in their resolve to revitalize Advancing Justice-LA and ensure continued service on behalf of our communities. They intend to do so while honoring our respect for the rights of our employees, including their right to organize, and the value we place upon collaboration. 

We have honored our commitment to collaboration by sharing with our staff the financial health of Advancing Justice-LA, and by engaging in dialogue with our program and unit directors to generate ideas for measures that might help mitigate the financial and operational challenges we face. Over the past two months, Stewart, Sylia, representatives of our senior management, and members of a Board-appointed Task Force and our Board at large have engaged seriously and in good faith with our staff leadership, meeting together on numerous occasions to listen and invite potential solutions and ideas.

The time is quickly coming when we must fulfill our responsibility to confront head-on the dire financial state of Advancing Justice-LA. Necessary steps are likely to include right-sizing the organization, in addition to reinvigorating our fundraising strategy. Nevertheless, in recognition of the difficult choices that lie ahead and in acknowledgment of the value we place on collaboration, our Board has agreed to continue the dialogue. In the coming days, we will commence a defined period of facilitated discussion between program and unit directors who wish to participate, representatives of the Task Force and Board at large, and senior management, to continue Advancing Justice-LA’s collaborative efforts to identify and analyze long-term solutions to sustain the organization.

We remain committed to our mission and our staff, and we believe we will come out of this time a stronger organization better positioned to advance justice for our communities.


Board of Directors
Asian Americans Advancing Justice - LA



Advancing Justice-LA's helplines prioritize assistance to low-income persons in the following areas of law: family, immigration, public benefits, employment, housing, and civil rights. 

English: 888.349.9695
需要協助嗎: 800.520.2356
도움이 필요하십니까: 800.867.3640
Tagalog: 855.300.2552
ต้องการความช่วยเหลือ: 800.914.9583


Our mission is to advocate for civil rights, provide legal services and education, and build coalitions to positively influence and impact Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders and to create a more equitable and harmonious society.