Story Slam at #AAJA17


AAJA would like to congratulate the three winners and three finalists of AAJA's first ever Story Slam at the 2017 AAJA National Convention in Philadelphia, PA. Click the links below to view their stories on YouTube.





2017 AAJA Story Slam First Place Winner

Ti-Hua Chang

Freelance Reporter

AAJA-New York

Story: "A Day Remembered"




2017 AAJA Story Slam Second Place Winner

Emil Guillermo

Independent Journalist, Emil Guillermo Media/Amok Productions,

AAJA-San Francisco Bay Area

Story: "Stephen and the American Filipino Story"




2017 AAJA Story Slam Third Place Winner

Akira Olivia Kumamoto

Freelance Video Journalist

AAJA-San Francisco Bay Area

Story: "Paper Doll."






Kyung-Yoon.jpegKyung Yoon

Reporter, CUNY-TV's "Asian American Life" and Executive Director, Korean American Community Foundation

AAJA-New York

Story: "Mama Mia! See My Face Beyond the Race" 





Angie Lau

Anchor/Reporter, Bloomberg TV Hong Kong


Story: "I Am Not Supposed to be Here"




Cheska-Perez.jpegCheska Perez

Student, Franklin & Marshall College


Story: "Undocumented"







Michael-Kim.jpegMichael Kim

Host, 120 Sports/Stadium

Michael Kim is an award-winning sports journalist with nearly 30 years of experience. After receiving his master's degree at the University of Missouri School of Journalism, Kim began his career in Washington, D.C. before spending 17 years at ESPN. He left in 2013 to help launch 120 Sports.







Lyman-Chen.jpegLyman Chen

Lyman is a film and television actor and a member of SAG-AFTRA. Some of Lyman's notable work includes from The Departed, It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Comedian, CBS' Rush Hour, MacGyver and Fox's APB. Currently, Lyman is on USA Network's Mr. Robot as Xun of the Dark Army and also can be next seen on the Feature, Untouchable starring Kevin Hart and Bryan Cranston.





Sunanda-Ghosh.jpegSunanda Ghosh

Sunanda is nonprofit consultant who has worked with organizations including Human Rights Watch, Habitat for Humanity International, American Friends Service Committee, Mural Arts Philadelphia, Asian Arts Initiative, Philadelphia Contemporary, Institute of Hip Hop Entrepreneurship and Drexel University. She currently serves on the boards of Skateistan, the Philadelphia Rail Park and Asian Arts Initiative. Sunanda has worked in India, South Africa and Brazil. She speaks fluent Bengali and is now based in Philadelphia.




Raju-Narisetti.pngRaju Narisetti

Raju is the CEO of Gizmodo Media Group of Univision Communications, Inc., a group site that includes some of the web's most beloved and authentic brands such as Gizmodo, Jezebel, Deadspin, Jalopnik and The Root. A media executive with a track record in creating, rethinking and managing major media organizations on three continents, Raju was most recently Senior Vice President of Strategy at News Corp. Prior to that, he was Managing Editor of The Wall Street Journal Digital Network.




Angilee-Shah.jpegAngilee Shah

Angilee is a digital editor at Global Nation, Public Radio International. She has reported on culture and politics from across Asia and the U.S. and is currently based in Minneapolis. She is also a consulting editor to the Journal of Asian Studies.






Thank you also to the judging panel who selected these finalists:

Jane Sujen Bock, freelance writer and organizer of the Harvard Asian American Alumni Alliance's first Voices Story Slam
Aaron Foley, Neighborhood Storyteller for the City of Detroit
Jen Kim, marketing/communications director, Asian American International Film Festival; winner of the Council of Korean Americans/'s first ROAR Story Slam
Sonia Khaleel, Copy Editor, Detroit Metro Times and improv performer


About Story Slam: What's Your Story?


As journalists, we bring to life every imaginable kind of story about events, issues and people in the news. But we’re rarely given a forum to share tales from our own lives.

We are proud to present our first AAJA Story Slam at #AAJA17. Through the AAJA Story Slam, we will turn our storytelling skills on ourselves and highlight the best personal stories from the Asian American and Pacific Islander journalist community.

The top storytellers will compete for cash prizes in an exciting live event on Friday, July 28, 2017, at the AAJA National Convention.

First place winner: $1,000
Second place winner: $500
Third place winner: $250



AAJA members with a story to tell. Your 2017 membership must be current before entering the Story Slam, but there is no additional entry fee.



Stories are personal and true and reflect an AAPI experience, keeping the #AAJA17 theme in mind: “Rise and Revolutionize.” Finalists will tell stories about something that happened to them or that they observed or learned, or about something that happened to someone else but affected them. They will be stories that move us, that will make us laugh, cry or think differently about something we thought we knew.



Monday, May 1, 2017 (by 11:59 pm PT): Video submissions due to

Thursday, June 1, 2017: Finalists notified.

Friday, July 28, 2017 at 5:30-6:30pm ET: The AAJA Story Slam will take place before attendees of the AAJA National Convention in Philadelphia. A judging panel will select winners, who will be announced at the event.

The contest organizers reserve the right to adjust the judging process, timeline and prizes.


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