Ryu Joins Long Line of Successful APALF Participants in Winning Elected Office

Los Angeles, CA:  David Ryu was elected to the Los Angeles City Council Tuesday, May 19th.  Ryu is the first Korean American and only the second Asian Pacific American(APA) to ever be elected to the L.A. City Council.

Ryu participated in the Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation (APALF) Candidate Leadership Training Bootcamp, a leadership-training program designed to help prepare and better equip Asian Pacific American leaders for public service and the rigors of campaigning.  APALF is a hands-on, intensive training program that trains candidates to win elected office.

Last year APALF created the California Asian Leadership Network of ElecTeds (CALNET), the only statewide network of APAs elected officials.

Over the course of the last 6 years, the APALF has conducted 4 candidate training sessions with tremendous success and impact.  Of the nearly 50 total individuals who have been trained through the APALF, many have run for office and won.  In addition to Ryu, State Controller Betty Yee, Assemblymembers Phil Ting, Rob Bonta, David Chiu, Evan Low, and San Francisco Board of Supervisors Member Eric Mar are graduates of the APALF training.

APALF instructors and speakers include California’s veteran political professionals and prominent APA elected officials, including State Treasurer John Chiang and Congressmembers Mike Honda and Judy Chu.  The success of the program is definitely linked to the quality of instructors and course curriculum.

“The candidate training program that APALF conducts is incredibly valuable.  I was the underdog in my race, but I learned that when you have a solid plan and stick to it, engage voters at a grassroots level, and talk about the issues they are concerned with you can have a winning campaign strategy,” said Councilmember-Elect David Ryu.

Ryu continued, “APALF success is in its alumni track record. I’m humbled to join the ranks of Controller Betty Yee, Assemblymembers Bonta, Chiu, Ting, Low, and all the other elected officials that have gone through the APALF training.”

Another valuable asset of the APALF is creating a network of APA elected officials.  This network can help mentor, support and leverage the relationships of APA leaders throughout California and the entire nation.  “One cannot underestimate the power and influence that relationships play in seeking, holding and winning public office.  I had the opportunity to become San Francisco’s Assessor-Recorder and now a member of the State Assembly because of relationships built through the APALF.  The network building through CALNET is much needed and invaluable,“ said Assemblymember Phil Ting.

APALF plans to organize another training class in 2016, and later this year will conduct the 2nd Annual CALNET Leadership Retreat, a statewide gathering of California elected and appointed officials.  “We hope to build on the success of our program and elect more qualified APAs to public office,” said Ronald Wong, APALF’s co-founder.

“I’m proud that APALF graduates continue to win and seek elected office.  Active participation is essential in our democratic form of government.  For nearly 2 decades APAs have been locked out of Los Angeles city government; David Ryu will make an outstanding L.A. City Councilmember.  David understands how to get things done and he will make our community proud,” stated Wong.



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