Date: May 20, 2009
Location: Hilton Hotel
Gaithersburg, Maryland

On May 29, 2009 the Asian American Health Initiative welcomed local and national public health experts to Gaithersburg, Maryland for the 2009 Asian American Health Conference. The Conference was organized to sustain the momentum gained at the 2006 Conference and maintained through the publication of the 2008 needs assessment report Asian American Health Priorities: Strengths, Needs, and Opportunities for Action. In addition to offering an expert array of conceptual and substantive presentations related to Asian American health, the 2009 Conference also facilitated the AAHI strategic planning process, helping to define the organization’s long-term strategic targets and direction.

In total, more than 300 public health practitioners, including health professionals, medical care providers, community health advocates, educators, researchers, policymakers, grant makers, and community leaders and partners, gathered for the event.

The 2009 Conference served as a platform to:

  • Unveil the findings of the 2008 AAHI Needs Assessment Report
  • Explore the composition of Asian American health disparities
  • Highlight best practice models
  • Identify barriers to health parity
  • Foster networking opportunities

Featured Speakers

The 2009 Health Conference kicked off with a cultural performance embodying a celebration of national Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month, followed by welcoming remarks from AAHI leadership as well as local and state officials. This was followed by a substantive set of keynote plenary presenters, who articulated the current state of public health in America and the political climate for health reform. The Conference concluded with a presentation on potential future actions and an interactive panel, during which Conference attendees posed questions with specific relevance to their organizations, populations of interest, and geographic constituencies.
We welcome you to view these presentations below in either streaming video or pdf format. Enjoy!

Opening Remarks

Julie Bawa, MPH

Program Manager
Asian American Health Initiative

Harry Kwon, PhD, MPH, CHES

Steering Committe Chair
Asian American Health Initiative

Isiah "Ike" Leggett

Montgomery County Executive

Uma Ahluwalia

Montgomery County Department of
Health and Human Services

Carlessia Hussein

Office of Minority Health & Health Disparities Department of Health & Mental Hygiene
State of Maryland

Phil Andrews

Montgomery County Council

George Leventhal

Montgomery County Council
Health and Human
Services Committee

Duchy Trachtenburg

Montgomery County Council

Morning Speakers

Keynote Speaker

Arthur Chen, MD
Former Chief Medical Officer
Alameda Alliance for Health Family Physician
Asian Health Services
Video, PDF

Marguerite Ro, DrPH
Video, PDF

Deputy Director
Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF)

Rod Lew, MPH

Founding Director
Asian Pacific Partners for Empowerment, Advocacy, and Leadership (APPEAL)

Sunmin Lee, ScD
Video, PDF

Assistant Professor
Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics
School of Public Health
University of Maryland

Breakout Speakers:

Theme I: Increasing Knowledge and Raising Awareness of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Measures

Henrietta Ho-Asjoe, MPS
A Contextual Overview
of Health Promotion

Director of Community Development
Center for the Study of Asian American Health (CSAAH)
New York University

Jing Zhang, PhD
Effective Health Promotion
in Limited English Speaking

Director of Community Health
Asian Health Human Services

Swaran Dhawan,

Addressing Mental Health Needs
With the South Asian Community

Board Chair
Counselors Helping (South) Asian Indians, Inc. (CHAI)

Theme II: Expanding Access to Quality Health Care Services

Deanna Laurie Jang, JD
Towards an Asian American,
Native Hawaiian and Pacific
Islander Health Agenda

Policy Director
Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF)

Amy Shek, MS
Organizational Overview and
Access to Health Care

Site Administrator
Charles B. Wang Community Health Center

Shahin Sebastian
Health Services For All -
Patient Navigator Program

Program Manager
Patient Navigators Program
Cross Cultural Infotech

Theme III: Broadening Partnerships and Collaborations

Arnab Mukherjea,
DrPH(c), MPH

A Snapshot of the older
and Asian and Pacific Islander
Health Organization

Chair of Scientific Programs
Asian Pacific Islander Caucus for Public Health (API Caucus)

Noilyn Abesamis-Mendoza,

Coalition for Health Access
to Reach Greater Equity

Program Manager: Health Policy
Coalition for Asian American Children & Families (CACF)

Jeffrey Caballero, MPH
Insights on Partnerships
for National Hepatitis B Strategy

Executive Director
Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO)

Theme IV: Enhancing Data Collection and Reporting

Kenneth Chu, PhD
Data on Asian Ethnic Groups -
The Hidden Dragon

Branch Chief
Disparities Research Branch
Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities
National Cancer Institute (NCI)

Beverly J. Quan Gor,

Lessons Learned from the
Asian American Health
Needs Assessment Project

Postdoctoral Fellow
Center for Research on Minority Health (CRMH)
Department of Health Disparities Research
MD Anderson Cancer Center
University of Texas

Ernest Moy, MD, MPH
Transforming Data Into Action -
Lessons from the National
Healthcare Disparities Report

Medical Officer
Center for Quality Improvement & Patient Safety
Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality (AHRQ)

Afternoon Sessions:

Gem Daus, MA
Video, PDF

Adjunct Professor
Asian American Studies Program
University of Maryland

Interactive Forum:
Arthur Chen, Marguerite Ro,
Rod Lew, Jeffrey Caballero


Adjunct Professor
Asian American Studies Program
University of Maryland

Paul Han, MD, MA, MPH

Former Vice Chair
Steering Committee
Asian American Health Initiative

Click Here to see full conference proceedings