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The Serica Initiative
Jewish-Asian Solidarity in the Face of Rising Hate: A Panel Discussion and Screening
Join The Serica Initiative as we convene a virtual panel of civic, academic, and faith leaders in the Asian and Jewish communities to explore the historical parallels between Jewish and Asian Americans, and how we can better forge solidarity against hate. The program will also include excerpts from the new digital series produced in partnership with Exploring Hate: BETWEEN BLACK & WHITE: ASIAN AMERICANS SPEAK OUT.
Hate crimes in the U.S. are up 100% from 2020, with anti-Asian and antisemitic attacks fueling the spike. Join The Serica Initiative as we convene a virtual panel of civic, academic, and faith leaders in the Asian and Jewish communities to explore the historical parallels between Jewish and Asian Americans, and how we can better forge solidarity against hate. The program will also include excerpts from the new digital series produced in partnership with Exploring Hate: BETWEEN BLACK & WHITE: ASIAN AMERICANS SPEAK OUT.
Daniel Tam-Claiborne is a multiracial author, multimedia producer, and nonprofit leader. He serves as Co-Executive Director of The Serica Initiative, the 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization powered by The China Project. Fluent in Mandarin Chinese, Daniel has spent over five years living and working in Greater China and is an outspoken advocate for Asian American issues and increased global understanding through education, cultural exchange, storytelling, and effective philanthropy. He holds degrees from Oberlin College, Yale University, and the Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College, and is currently completing a novel set against the backdrop of contemporary U.S.-China relations.
Shira Loewenberg is Director of AJC’s Asia Pacific Institute (API). Prior to joining AJC, Loewenberg worked in New York and around the world for multilateral and international organizations including the United Nations Department of Peacekeeping Operations and the United Nations Development Programme, with expertise in regions of conflict and post-conflict environments. She has appeared on panels and spoken at institutions including the World Bank, Columbia University, and Deutsche Welle, and has taught as an adjunct professor at The New School’s Graduate Program in International Affairs. She has authored numerous papers and op-eds published in The Hill, The Times of Israel, and the Sunday Guardian, among other publications. She earned a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.A. from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs.
Rabbi Mira Rivera
Rabbi Mira Rivera is the first Filipina-American woman to be ordained at The Jewish Theological Seminary with a Masters in Jewish Studies, She is Rabbi-in-Residence for JCC Harlem and The LUNAR Collective. She is a Board Certified Chaplain with Neshama: Association of Jewish Chaplains. She was awarded the Rabbinical Excellence Award by Harlem District 9’s Councilwoman Kristin Richardson Jordan in 2022: “for a Rabbi who teaches Torah through leading and developing spiritual communities and living out Tikkun Olam - repair of the world - in New York City.” She is this year’s recipient of the Rabbinic Human Rights Hero Award from T’ruah “for ensuring that the gifts, voices, and experiences of Jews of Color are seen, heard, and known.” Born in Detroit, she came to New York City to dance and performed with the Martha Graham Dance Company and Ensemble under the mentorship of Yuriko Kikuchi. She graduated with a BFA in Film from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts.
Cathy J. Schlund-Vials
Cathy J. Schlund-Vials is Professor of English and Asian American Studies at the University of Texas (Austin). Prior to her appointment at the University of Texas, she was a Board of Trustees Distinguished Professor of English and Asian/Asian American Studies at the University of Connecticut (Storrs). She served as President of the Association for Asian American Studies (2016-2017), the president-elect for the American Studies Association (2020-2021), and a series editor for the "Asian American History & Culture" initiative at Temple University Press.
Charity Espiritu is a Deputy Director at The Asian American Foundation, leading the anti-hate portfolio and bringing nearly 20 years of experience in philanthropy, social impact, and public service. Previously, she was the COO of a college access startup and held leadership roles at a global development agency where she worked on anti-trafficking, governance, and human rights in the Asia Pacific. Charity has a Master's degree in Public Policy and International Affairs from Princeton University and a Bachelor's degree in Economics from the University of California at Berkeley. She is the daughter of immigrant parents and granddaughter of a World War veteran.