Highlights from the 3rd Annual California Asian Leadership Network of Electeds (CALNET) Leadership Retreat

The Largest Convening of California’s APA Elected and Appointed Officials

Attendees of the 2017 CALNET Leadership Retreat

The Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation (APALF) hosted the 3rd Annual Leadership Retreat for the California Asian Leadership Network of Electeds (CALNET) on January 5 – 6, 2017 in Ranchos Palos Verdes, California.

California State Treasurer John Chiang leads a discussion at the Opening Dinner on January 5, 2017.
Over 80 of California’s key elected and state appointed officials returned for a third year in building the much needed CALNET, a network for APA elected leaders. Some of the state’s most prominent elected officials included California State Treasurer John Chiang; California State Controller Betty Yee; Board of Equalization Chairwoman Fiona Ma; California Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon; Assemblymembers Rob Bonta, Phillip Chen, David Chiu, Al Muratsuchi, Evan Low and Phil Ting.

 

The theme of the retreat was “Moving Forward. Prospects for an APA President.” The retreat offered an opportunity for the state’s most important decision makers to learn, share ideas, and discuss their vision for California and the APA community. Retreat workshops and panels discussed what it would take to have an APA President and assessed the political maturation of the APA community. There are currently more than 240 APA elected and appointed officials in California serving.
Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (left) and State Controller Betty Yee (right) provided remarks on state of California and leadership.

The Opening Dinner featured California State Treasurer John Chiang who led a discussion on “California Leading America.” Day 2 featured remarks from California State Controller Betty Yee and California Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon. Assemblymembers Rob Bonta, Phillip Chen, David Chiu, Evan Low, and Phil Ting, all alumni of the APALF Candidate Bootcamp Training, discussed how to build the political infrastructure to sustain and support APA candidates for higher office during the “Climbing the Political Ladder” plenary.

(From left): Assemblymembers Rob Bonta, Phillip Chen, David Chiu, Phil Ting and Evan Low speak on the “Climbing the Political Ladder” Plenary.
Other highlights of the retreat program included plenary sessions on coalition building and the Asian American and Pacific Islander vote in 2016 elections. Break-out session topics included “California Leading the Way: The Future of Clean Energy” and “Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Overcoming Unique Challenges.”

 

Participants also received Media Training with Richard Lui, MSNBC & NBC News Anchor, and Yusef Robb, former Communications Director for Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti.
APALF partnered with the Asian Pacific Islander (API) Legislative Caucus, the League of California Cities API Caucus, and Chinese-American Elected Officials to host and convene the retreat.
The goal of CALNET is to be a network of APA elected and appointed officials – a resource for APA public servants to help them succeed and lead.  CALNET is a project of APALF, a 501(c)(3) non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to helping prepare and better equip APA leaders for public service and civic involvement.

The 4th Annual CALNET Leadership Retreat is scheduled to take place in 2018.

Thank you to the 3rd Annual CALNET Leadership Retreat sponsors!

 

 

Charter
PG&E
Gold
Comcast

 

Silver
BNSF Railway Company
California Dental Association
Coca-Cola
Imprenta Communications
Kaiser Permanente
Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians
State Building & Construction Trades Council of California

Bronze
Southern California Edison
CAPA21
CAPG
Dart Container Corporation
Lyft
Recology
United
United Nurses Associations of California (UNAC)

Friends
Assemblymember Phillip Chen
Hilltop Securities
Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS)
Partner Organizations
Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus
League of California Cities Asian Pacific Islander Caucus
Chinese-American Elected Officials (CEO)

PRESS RELEASE: Prominent Asian and Pacific American leaders convene for statewide retreat

CALNET Hosts Annual Leadership Retreat of APA Elected and Appointed Officials – “Moving Forward: Prospects for an APA President”

LOS ANGELES, CA. — The California Asian Leadership Network of Electeds (CALNET) hosted their 3rd Annual Leadership Retreat this past weekend on January 5-6, 2017 in Ranchos Palos Verdes.  

The CALNET Retreat featured a number of California’s prominent elected officials including Treasurer John Chiang; State Controller Betty Yee; Board of Equalization Chairwoman Fiona Ma; Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon; Assemblymembers Rob Bonta, Phillip Chen, David Chiu, Steven Choi, Kansen Chu, Evan Low, Al Muratsuchi and Phil Ting. This was the largest gathering of the most prominent APA elected officials in California’s history.

The theme of this year’s retreat was, “Moving Forward:  Prospects for an Asian Pacific American President.” “With the focus on what it would take to have an APA President, we assessed the political maturation of the APA community and explored how other communities of color and minority groups organize and mobilize to gain more political representation,” said Amy Watanabe, Director of the Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation and CALNET. “There is still a lot of work to be done to achieve the ultimate American Dream of having an APA as President of the United States, and CALNET is where these conversations start.”

State Treasurer John Chiang opened the Retreat with a thought provoking roundtable discussion. Chiang, a candidate for Governor, was a crowd favorite and is a role model for many APA elected leaders. Becoming Governor of the nation’s largest state would position any California Governor as a potential contender for President.

Former Congressman Mike Honda was recognized with a Lifetime Achievement Award and stayed for the entire Retreat. Other retreat workshops and panels focused on building the pipeline for APA candidates to ascend to higher office, and a skills building session on media relations featuring MSNBC and NBC News anchor Richard Lui.  

The last decade has seen an explosion of APA elected officials at the state and local levels. Currently, there are more than 240 elected leaders of Asian Pacific Islander descent.  There are now record numbers of APAs in the State Legislature and in local elected office throughout California.

Assemblymember Rob Bonta, Chair of the Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus, offered his support and that of other Assemblymembers in creating a pipeline to increase the number of APAs in the State Legislature. “We need to do our part in supporting qualified candidates for higher office and help mentor and inspire new leaders,” said Bonta.  “APAs can and should play a role in helping to lead our state. We have a lot to contribute to make our community stronger and truly representative of the diversity that is California.”

“With the increase in APA elected officials over the past 20 years, it is important we come together to share resources, network and learn from each other,” said Assemblymember Phil Ting, Chair of the Assembly Budget Committee.  

CALNET was created to be a resource to help APA elected officials be more effective. CALNET is a project of the Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation (APALF), a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization to help prepare and train qualified APA leaders for public service.

“CALNET provides a unique platform for state and local elected officials to connect and collaborate,” said Ronald W. Wong, Founder of APALF. “APAs are at a coming of age for political leadership in California from the local to national levels. There are 3 Constitutional Officers, 14 State Legislators and 7 Members of Congress, including the state’s first APA U.S. Senator Kamala Harris. We are going to lead by embracing diversity. With CALNET and APALF, we can ensure that APAs are well represented in governance and leadership.”

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) has been a corporate sponsor of the program since its inception.  The generous support of PG&E has made this program possible.  Fong Wan, Senior Vice President, Energy Policy and Procurement, for PG&E was a featured speaker at the Retreat.  Other corporate sponsor include Comcast NBC Universal, BNSF Railway Company, California Dental Association, Coca-Cola, Imprenta Communications Group, Kaiser Permanente,  Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians, State Building & Construction Trades Council of California, Southern California Edison, CAPG, DART Container Corporation, Lyft, Recology, United Airlines, United Nurses Associations of California (UNAC), CAPA 21, Hilltop Securities, among others.

APALF plans to organize additional training programs in the coming months and will host the 4th Annual CALNET Leadership Retreat in 2018.

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About California Asian Leadership Network of Electeds (CALNET)

The California Asian Leadership Network of Electeds (CALNET) is a statewide network of Asian Pacific American (APA) elected and appointed officials. CALNET provides a unique opportunity for APA public officials at all levels of government to connect, build relationships, and share best practices. CALNET is a project of the Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation (APALF), a 501c3 nonprofit, non-partisan organization dedicated to helping prepare and better equip Asian Pacific American (APA) leaders for public service and civic involvement.

 

APALF Hosts Regional Summit in San Diego, California

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On October 6, 2016, APALF launched its first Regional Summit in San Diego, California. California State Controller Betty Yee discussed housing affordability and tax reform in the state of California and San Diego County with local Asian Pacific American (APA) leaders from the community, business and political sector.

The APALF Regional Summit programming serves to motivate and mobilize the APA community by providing opportunities for greater civic participation and ensure that policy makers and stakeholders are adequately informed to create positive policy changes in their local community, county and state.

E-mail info@apalf.org for more information about upcoming Regional Summits.

APALF Hosts 2nd Annual CALNET Leadership Retreat

The Largest Convening of California’s APA Elected and Appointed Officials

The Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation (APALF) hosted the 2nd Annual Leadership Retreat for the California Asian Leadership Network of Electeds (CALNET) on December 3-4, 2015, in Half Moon Bay, CA. The CALNET retreat is the largest gathering of Asian Pacific American (APA) elected and appointed officials in California.

 

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APALF Bootcamp Alumni Panel featuring Moderator Johnny Giles, Assemblymember David Chiu, Assemblymemember Rob Bonta, and Assemblymember Evan Lo (from left to right).

The retreat hosted more than 80 of the state’s most prominent elected officials including California Secretary of State Alex Padilla; California State Controller Betty Yee; Board of Equalization Member Fiona Ma; Assemblymembers Rob Bonta, David Chiu, Phil Ting and Evan Low; San Francisco Supervisors Eric Mar and Jane Kim; and Los Angeles City Councilmember David Ryu.

California’s key elected and state appointed officials returned for a second year in building the much needed CALNET—a network for APA elected leaders. Similar from last year, the retreat offered an opportunity for the state’s most important decision makers to learn, share ideas, and discuss their vision for California and the APA community. There are currently more than 220 APA elected and appointed officials in California serving.

The theme of the retreat was, “DISRUPTION: Changing the Way We Do Business, Govern and Lead.” The retreat workshops and panels focused on ideas and leaders that are disrupting the status quo in politics and other arenas.

The program included workshops and training sessions on how to become

Clean Energy Policy Panel with David Horschild, California Energy Commission, and Assemblymember Phil Ting
Clean Energy Policy Panel with David Horschild, California Energy Commission, and Assemblymember Phil Ting

more effective and successful public officials. Presentation topics included changing APA demographics and implications, messaging and panel topics that included APA Women in Leadership, Healthcare, Technology, Social Media, and Clean Energy.

Highlights from the retreat program included a special dinner panel of APALF alumni on the future of the Asian & Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus featuring California State Assemblymembers Rob Bonta, David Chiu, and Evan Low.

California Secretary of State Alex Padilla
California Secretary of State Alex Padilla

California State Secretary and past President of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO), Alex Padilla opened the 2nd day luncheon program by drawing parallels between CALNET’s growth and the early stages of the NALEO. Secretary Padilla also emphasized CALNET as a resource to APA elected and appointed officials in California and the potential of the network to scale up nationwide.

 

California State Controller Betty Yee
California State Controller Betty Yee

California State Controller Betty Yee followed by recanting her previously hard fought election last year and the takeaways lessons from running against established candidates. Controller Yee’s inspirational experience demonstrated that even in face of great challenges you can be successful through smart campaign strategy, integrity and perseverance.

The retreat featured a new segment that focused on tech and social media and how these new mechanisms and tools are a tremendous resource in not only communicating to the community but also how they also contribute to the changing values in our society. These moderated panels on social media and disruptive technology had representatives from Uber, Lyft, AirBnB, Youtube, and Facebook. Specifically, the social media panel with Facebook and Youtube, invited elected officials to learn more on how to utilize special tools to engage and connect with constituents through video and draw the connection between possible voters, donors, and supporters in an effective and innovative way.

Technology Panel: From Left to Right: Moderator Assemblymember David Chiu, Eva Behrend - Uber, David Owen - AirBnB, Annabel Chang- Lyft
Technology Panel: From Left to Right: Moderator Assemblymember David Chiu, Eva Behrend – Uber, David Owen –
AirBnB, Annabel Chang- Lyft

APALF partnered with the Asian Pacific Islander (API) Legislative Caucus, the League of California Cities API Caucus, and Chinese-American Elected Officials to host and convene the retreat.

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The goal of CALNET is to serve as a network of APA elected and appointed officials—a resource for APA public servants to help them succeed and lead. CALNET is a project of APALF, a 501c3 non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to helping prepare and better equip APA leaders for public service and civic involvement.

State Treasurer John Chiang Keynotes CALNET Elected Officials Briefing – Southern California


On October 27, 2015, APALF hosted a CALNET Elected Official Briefing for APA elected in the Southern California region. Los Angeles City Councilmember David Ryu provided opening remarks and California State Treasurer John Chiang provided the keynote on “Municipal Financing: Public- Private Partnerships.”

APALF Hosts First Statewide Convening of California’s APA Elected and Appointed Officials

Mayor Ed Lee of San Francisco

The Asian Pacific American Leadership Foundation (APALF) hosted the first statewide convening of California’s Asian Pacific American (APA) elected and appointed officials in Half Moon Bay, CA, on July 31-August 1, 2014. This retreat served as a launch event for a new statewide network of APA public officials called CALNET (California Asian Leadership Network of Electeds).

More than 75 of the state’s leading APA elected leaders, including State Treasurer John Chiang, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, State Controller Betty Yee, Assemblymembers Rob Bonta, Al Muratsuchi, David Chiu, Phil Ting, and Mariko Yamada, Mayors, City Councilmembers, School Boardmembers, and State appointed officials, participated in the CALNET Leadership Retreat. Attendees came together from across the state to learn, share ideas, and discuss their vision for California and the APA community. There are currently over 220 APA elected officials in California.

Assemblymember Phil Ting, CA District 19

The theme of the CALNET Leadership Retreat was “Our Seat at the Table – From Representation to Leadership.” The program included workshops and training sessions on how to become more effective and successful public officials. Presentation topics included changing APA demographics and implications, media & messaging, legal/ethics issues, serving in high-level appointed positions, speech training, and fundraising. Presenters included leaders in their respective fields, including elected officials, the state’s top political strategists, campaign/election lawyers, senior staff to Governor Jerry Brown, and fundraisers for the Speaker of the California State Assembly.

Retreat participants discussed the need for infrastructure to support the growing number of APA public officials serving in elected and appointed office throughout the state, much like what the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) has done for more than three decades in the Latino community.

State Controller John Chiang, the state’s highest ranking APA elected

CA State Board of Equalization Member Betty Yee
CA State Board of Equalization Member Betty Yee

official, challenged participants to come together and support qualified APA candidates. He highlighted the possibility that State Board of Equalization Member Betty Yee could succeed him as State Controller. Later that year, Betty was elected State Controller after running a tough but successful campaign. For the first time in California’s history, there are three statewide Constitutional officers of Asian or Pacific Islander descent.

Assemblymember David Chiu and Assemblymember Al Muratsuchi
Assemblymember David Chiu and Assemblymember Al Muratsuchi

The retreat also featured BlackBerry Chairman and CEO John Chen, a high profile business executive and recognized turn-around specialist, who discussed parallels between APA leadership and the glass ceiling in the public and private sectors. Other keynote speakers included San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and State Treasurer John Chiang.

APALF partnered with the Asian Pacific Islander (API) Legislative Caucus, the League of California Cities API Caucus, Chinese-American Elected Officials, and the California Asian Pacific Chamber of Commerce to host and convene the retreat.

The goal of CALNET is to serve as a network of APA elected and appointed

CA State Controller John Chiang and APALF Founder Ron Wong
CA State Controller John Chiang and APALF Founder Ron Wong

officials—a resource for APA public servants to help them succeed and lead. CALNET is a project of APALF, a 501c3 non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to helping prepare and better equip APA leaders for public service and civic involvement.

The 2015 CALNET Leadership Retreat will take place December 3-4 in Half Moon Bay, CA.