Global AAPI Caucus Steering Committee; Treasurer & DPCA Representative, Germany

At home or abroad, I think it's crucial for Americans to participate in the political process.

  • January News: Happy New Year - Have You Requested Your Ballot?


    Happy New Year! On behalf of the AAPI Caucus Steering Committee, we hope you had a healthy, happy, and positive start to your 2022. We have a lot of work ahead of us as we begin getting out the vote, and we’re looking forward to working with you to come out on top in November.

    If you haven’t already, we really encourage you to already put in your request for your ballot at The earlier you get your request in, the better! Not only are the midterms in November important, but you should also participate in your state’s primaries to make sure the candidate you want gets on the ballot. The first major primary is in Texas on March 1st, 2022. Texas voters have already begun to receive their ballots, so make sure you request today!

    Democrats Abroad is also calling all of members from Texas. If you are interested in helping us phone bank, please visit our website to find upcoming training sessions and all the necessary materials for our ongoing campaigns.

    We have a lot of interesting events coming up starting in February. Join us on Thursday, February 3, 2022, for our Lunar New Year Celebration or on Sunday, February 6, to discuss the third episode of the PBS Documentary “Asian Americans”. On Saturday, February 26, the DA Germany Saxony Chapter will host author Willy Wilkinson to discuss his book Born on the Edge of Race and Gender: A Voice for Cultural Competency.

    And in case you missed it, we were honored to co-host “Why We Can’t Wait” with the DA Reparations Task Force, the Global Black Caucus, and Global Progressive Caucus. We heard from representatives from Nikkei Progressives, Nikkei for Civil Rights and Redress, and Human Rights Watch about the history of the Japanese-American post-WWII Reparations and Black Reparations movements, how such redress has impacted both groups, and why we should continue fighting for this legislation at local, state, and national levels. Watch the recording here.

    If you are interested in volunteering with the AAPI Caucus to help us get out the vote in 2022, you can find volunteer opportunities on our website. You can also make a donation to Democrats Abroad on behalf of the AAPI Caucus. Your financial support to our all-volunteer organization will help pay for voter outreach, improvements to our website, and more.

    We look forward to seeing you all at an upcoming event and wish everyone a great Lunar New Year!

    Best wishes,
    Emily Lines
    Chair, AAPI Caucus

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  • published Join the AAPI Caucus Steering Committee in News 2021-11-08 08:13:22 -0500

    Join the AAPI Caucus Steering Committee

    The AAPI Caucus is looking to strengthen its global leadership team. As a member of the Steering Committee, you will help guide the caucus and set its agenda. Steering Committee members are asked to also volunteer with one of our working groups (events & speakers, communications & outreach, issues, or voter outreach). The Committee meets every two weeks online and members can expect a time commitment of approximately 5 hours a week. 

    If you are interested in joining our Steering Committee, send an email to Emily Lines at [email protected]. In your email, please introduce yourself, why you would like to join the Steering Committee, and any specific areas of interest.

    We look forward to expanding our leadership team and continuing to strengthen our caucus!

  • published June News: From APA Heritage Month to Pride Month in News 2021-06-08 07:55:59 -0400

    June News: From APA Heritage Month to Pride Month

    We hope you enjoyed our Asian Pacific American Heritage Month events! In May, we hosted 11 events and had broad participation from around the world. Our cooking classes (Korean Street Food and Filipino Chicken Adobo) were hugely popular - they had the highest turnout. Don’t forget to check out some of the other events we held - some of them are online on our YouTube channel and can be watched at any time. We look forward to seeing you at our other AAPI events!

    June is Pride Month. To celebrate, our caucus will be exploring the intersections between AAPI and LGBTQ+ identities in partnership with the Global LGBTQ+ Caucus. We’ll be hosting a segment of the Pride Marathon on June 20 (more details below). And join us on June 25 for a Q&A session with Professor Amy Sueyoshi, Associate Dean of Ethnic Studies at San Francisco State University, on her work with the Seen and Unseen Exhibit, which explores the history of LGBTQ people in the Japanese American community before 1945. Make sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for updates on those events!

    As we wind down from the Democrats Abroad Global Meeting last month, we will also begin developing tools to help country committees increase their outreach to Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in their countries. Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders are the fastest growing racial group in the United States, and our votes can make the difference in states like Arizona, Pennsylvania, and Georgia. Check out this page to get involved today!

    Best wishes,

    Cory J. Lemke and Emily Lines

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  • published Southwest Asian Literature in News 2021-06-01 10:13:34 -0400

    Southwest & Central Asian Voices

    Asia is diverse, and so are our Asian American experiences! Here's a list of recommended reading for people looking to include Central and Southwest Asian American voices on their bookshelves and their screens. 

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  • COVID-19 hits Asian American employment especially hard

    The COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing recession have hit Asian Americans especially hard, according recent media reports in Bloomberg and NBC News, and a Working Paper of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.

    Luojia Hu and B E. Honoré, the authors of the FRB Working Paper, cited a 14% drop in Asian American employment between the first and second quarters of 2020. This was the highest drop in employment amongst the White, Black, Hispanic and Asian American groups.

    And while the employment rate of white men had recovered by the third quarter to approximately 4 percentage points below first quarter levels, all of the minority groups had not recovered to the same degree, lagging between 6 and 7 percentage points below first quarter levels.

    This trend is broadly corroborated by the news media. According to Reade Pickert of Bloomberg, “in the final three months of 2020, almost half of jobless Asians had been out of work for at least 27 weeks - a bigger share than White, Black or Hispanic Americans.“

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  • Asian Pacific Heritage Month Events in May 2021 with Democrats Abroad - FULL LIST

    This year, we're marking Asian Pacific American Heritage Month with an amazing lineup of events, exploring and celebrating Asian American and Pacific Islander communities, history, culture, and experiences. Here are all the events hosted by Democrats Abroad caucuses, country committees, and chapters for this month.

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  • published AAPI Heritage Month in News 2021-05-02 10:50:13 -0400

    AAPI Heritage Month

    May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month!Democrats_Abroad_Logo_-_AAPI_(transparent_background__2_lines)_0.5x.png

    May marks the beginning of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, also known as Asian American and Pacific Islander Month. Never heard of it before? It’s meant to celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander history and culture. And given the increase in anti-AAPI incidents, it’s a chance for all of us in Democrats Abroad to connect, learn something new, and celebrate.

    The idea of designating a period to celebrate Asian-American and Pacific Islander history first emerged in Congress with resolutions proposed in the House by Republican Frank J. Horton and Democrat Norman Mineta, and in the Senate by Democrats Daniel Inouye and Spark Matsunaga in 1977. These initial efforts failed, but Representative Horton tried again a year later to designate the first full week of May 1979 as “Asian/Pacific American Heritage Week”. This Resolution passed both Houses, and was signed by President Jimmy Carter.

    Successive Presidents passed annual proclamations declaring “Asian/Pacific American Heritage Week.” President George H.W. Bush extended it to a full month in 1990, and Congress formally established “Asian/Pacific Heritage Month” in 1992.

    But why May? The original resolutions present two reasons:

    1. The first Japanese immigrant to the United States arrived on May 7th, 1843.
    2. The transcontinental railway, built in large part due to immigrant labor from China, was completed on May 10th, 1869.

    Of course, one thing sticks out: these two justifications concern only two East Asian populations, and miss the large diversity within the AAPI community: other East Asians, South Asians, Southeast Asians, and Pacific Islanders. It can be easy in talking about AAPI heritage to focus on a few select experiences; instead, we need a holistic view of what it means to be a part of the AAPI community.

    We invite you to join us in an exploration of how different groups within the AAPI community have been part of American history. For those of you who belong to one particular AAPI group, take some time to explore the history of another group, and see how different experiences end up binding us together.

    Join us to receive email updates about volunteering, upcoming events, and new AAPI caucus groups forming in your countries and chapters.

    If you'd like to start an AAPI caucus in your Democrats Abroad country committee or chapter, we've put together a guide to forming your own local AAPI caucus.

    Get involved in the AAPI Caucus! You can volunteer at the local, national, or global level with our different working groups and projects.

    Follow us on social media


    Learn more about the AAPI caucus and read the caucus founding document, the Terms of Reference. To contact the co-chairs of the Democrats Abroad Global AAPI Caucus, send an email to [email protected].

  • Democrats Abroad Germany Bookkeeping Volunteer

    As we continue to grow, help us track Democrats Abroad Germany’s finances better as bookkeeping volunteer! Previous experience with QuickBooks and accounting highly desirable.

    Time commitment: 5 hours per month

    Interested or have questions?

    Contact Person: Powen Shiah, [email protected]

  • published Discussing Parasite with the Progressive Caucus in News 2021-04-10 15:00:40 -0400

    Discussing Parasite with the Progressive Caucus

    We held a collaborative event with the Progressive Caucus - which we hope was the first of many -  to discuss the most notorious film of 2019, Parasite. The aim of this event, which took place on March 27, was to kick off a potential film club and to gather film buffs together to share ideas, perspectives, and raise concerns relating to society today.

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  • Bridging Climate Change’s Effects … and Causes

    The new Biden Administration is making climate change a priority for the United States, after four years of neglect, if not outright denial, under the Trump Administration.

    But climate change is a global problem, which requires global solutions, and global support and understanding to help us get there. US Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry, after a visit to the European Commission, stated that the United States would “work together and with other countries to help the world's most vulnerable cope with the devastating impacts of climate change.“

    As Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, we are acutely aware of the effects of climate change on our relatives, friends, and communities that live around the world:

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  • published A Short Reading List on the AAPI Experience in News 2021-03-26 12:08:05 -0400

    A Short Reading List on the AAPI Experience

    We know many in the AAPI community are in shock after the violent attack in Atlanta earlier this month. It comes after a year of increased rhetoric and violence against AAPI communities since before the pandemic began, and is an intensification of a phenomenon that has happened for a long time.

    We felt it was best, at this point, for us to take a step back, and share a reading list: of articles that examine how the events of the past year have affected the AAPI community; of non-fiction books that explore the history and stories of AAPI communities; and of works of fiction that detail AAPI immigrant experiences.

    We hope you find this list useful.

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  • Berlin News: Farewell from your Berlin Board – Chapter Elections on Wednesday

    It's time for a new beginning: the Berlin chapter elections for 2021-2023 officers will take place this Wednesday, February 17, 2021, starting at 7pm. RSVP and scroll down for more details on candidates.

    This is the last email newsletter from the Berlin chapter's current leadership team. We're looking forward to electing our successors on Wednesday. Here are a few words of farewell from each of us.


    Diego Rivas, Chair

    Resilient, opinionated, and progressive, the Berlin Chapter of Democrats Abroad has grown so much these past four years. Not only has our membership doubled, but we have taken important and sustainable steps forward by implementing an elected chapter board and developing our kiez captain network. This was only possible thanks to all of the volunteers and their passion for change. We did our part in getting ‘45’ out of the White House and winning the House and Senate. I will fondly remember the laughs, lessons, discussions (yes, sometimes heated), but most importantly the community spirit of people from all walks of life uniting for a greater cause. It has been a pleasure. I am sincerely looking forward to seeing the chapter continue to grow and to keep in touch with everyone - see you at the next possible pub night.

    Emily Lines, Vice Chair

    This has been a wild 4 years and I can’t believe that my time as Vice Chair is coming to an end. I enjoyed working with everyone here in Berlin and I am impressed and proud of all the work and time all of our volunteers contributed. I hope that everyone continues to remain engaged and I look forward to continuing to work with the Berlin chapter in the years to come!

    Amy Herr, GOTV Coordinator

    It has been a wonderful four years volunteering as Events and GOTV Coordinator for our Berlin chapter. I’ve so enjoyed getting to know all of you, maintaining an active network, and helping many of you send in your ballots! I am excited to see what our chapter will do in the coming years, and look forward to the time that we can all meet again.

    Theresa Gasinski, Membership & Volunteer Coordinator

    I am continually impressed by all of the dedicated and passionate volunteers we have here in Berlin. There is always someone willing to wake up early on a blustery Saturday morning to help set up for our Thanksgiving Turkey Trot, learn the complicated voter registration rules to prepare for the Global Presidential Primary, or open up their home to other Democrats Abroad members for Kiez meetings. I'd like to thank you all for committing your time to help our chapter grow and create a sustainable network of politically-minded Americans doing their part to build an equitable and just future.

    Powen Shiah, Communications & Press Officer

    When I showed up at my first Democrats Abroad event, I never imagined I would end up volunteering myself for the next several years. It's been my small way of making sure I could look back on these strange and difficult times, knowing that I did my part to keeping a progressive light burning and to stand up for an inclusive and more just vision of the world. I'm looking forward to seeing how our community and movement grow in future. It's been so rewarding to be part of Democrats Abroad Berlin!

    Berlin Chapter Elections

    Wed. Feb 17, 2021, 7pm
    Online (RSVP for Zoom access)
    RSVP | Facebook | Candidate Lists & Info

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  • January News: Join us for our Inaugural Teatime on January 28th

    Happy New Year! We hope everyone was able to recharge over the holidays and start your new year off well. So far, 2021 has already been a wild roller coaster ride. Many of us are still processing the upsetting (and infuriating!) events of January 6th at the Capitol. Please get in touch with your representatives in Congress and let them know how you feel. Information on how to contact Congress and a sample script can be found here. But starting January 20th, we’ll be looking forward with hope and excitement to the plans and leadership that are already being displayed by the Biden-Harris administration.

    “Moving from being the marginalised to the margin of victory”: last month we co-hosted an online discussion that featured on the ground AAPI activists in Georgia and Tom Perez, Chairman of the Democratic National Committee. It was clear how important the AAPI vote was in the Georgia November election, and this did not go ignored by the Ossoff and Warnock campaigns. If you were not able to attend the event, you can check out our short event recap. We are so thankful for the Georgia voters that showed up and for the work of the activists we heard from to get Jon Ossoff and Reverend Raphael Warnock elected to the US Senate.

    As we begin our first full year as a caucus, we will be focusing on growing our membership and continuing to advocate for AAPI concerns within Democrats Abroad. If you are interested in volunteering with the caucus, please reach out! You can find descriptions of various volunteer opportunities here:

    Our first event this year will be Teatime Networking on Thursday, January 28th. We’ll be speed networking to give everyone a chance to meet each other, and talking about our experiences as Asian and Pacific Islander Americans living overseas. This will be the inaugural teatime event and will continue as an event series throughout the year.

    We look forward to what 2021 has in store and to making even more of a difference in DA and at home!

    With gratitude,

    Cory J. Lemke and Emily Lines

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  • published This was Democrats Abroad Berlin: 2020 in Review in News 2021-01-10 19:23:27 -0500

    This was Democrats Abroad Berlin: 2020 in Review

    Democrats Abroad Berlin worked hard this past year to mobilize Americans across the German capital to vote in the 2020 Global Presidential Primary as well as the U.S. General Election.

    We wanted a Democratic House, Senate, and Presidency – and we won all three! Our underlying goal was to reach the 22,000 US citizens living in Berlin – we knew that every vote would be needed. During this pivotal year, we...

    • Hosted a Global Presidential Primary voting center
    • Built a network of neighborhood-based mobilization
    • Turned our precincts in Leipzig-Halle and Dresden into a new chapter: Democrats Abroad Saxony
    • Phone and text banked thousands Democrats Abroad members
    • Organized virtual book club meetings and pub quizzes
    • Put on two fundraisers: a wine-tasting fundraiser and a tax information session
    • Provided voter assistance by offering online office hours and answering hundreds of emails
    • Called the “Count the Votes! Rally” in front of Brandenburg Gate on Wednesday, November 4th, 2020
    • Represented our efforts on German and European media

    All of this was only possible thanks to our 100+ volunteers. A huge shout out to everyone who made our work possible! Continue reading for more details on the Berlin chapter’s 2020 accomplishments.

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  • published December News: Georgia Peaches, Teatime, and 2021 in News 2020-12-16 07:53:58 -0500

    December News: Georgia Peaches, Teatime, and 2021

    Happy Holidays! 2020 presented the world with unprecedented challenges, but this has only motivated the AAPI Caucus to work harder. We are proud of our accomplishments in the past year and are ready to answer Joe Biden’s call to action - build back better.

    It’s hard to believe that this journey to form an AAPI Caucus just began in April this year and we officially launched at the Global Meeting in June. We got off to a running start and haven’t looked back since.

    • We hosted several talks with AAPI leaders to learn about organizing in our community.
    • We hosted a Mid-Autumn Festival to celebrate our collective heritage.
    • We created AAPI language content to help get out the vote for the general election.
    • And our work is not done!

    Georgia On Our Mind: AAPI Outreach Organizers & Tom Perez

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  • published Recipes From Home - What's yours? in Recipes from Home 2020-12-16 05:32:39 -0500

    Recipes From Home - What's yours?

    Your grandmother’s kimchee, your Sunday afternoon poi snack, Dad’s lobster noodles, or that slice of Chicago pizza - these all represent a piece of home to us.  And as Americans overseas, it’s often hard to get your fix of food from home – whether you’re in Tokyo, missing your lasagna fix; or in Munich, searching for a dim sum restaurant.

    We’d like to create a place to share the stories and recipes that remind you of home, that make you laugh, or that solve a problem!  We’ll post them here on our webpages and in our newsletter. If you have a video, even better – send us the link!

    Submit Your Recipe From Home


  • Event Recap: Democrats Abroad AAPI Caucus Hosts Filmmaker Yi Chen

    Democrats Abroad was thrilled to host director Yi Chen to discuss her new documentary First Vote on November 6, 2020.

    Described as a “beguiling and refreshingly non-partisan political travelogue” by the American Film Institute, Chen’s documentary follows four Chinese Americans who voted for the first time in the 2018 midterm elections and illuminates their contrasting political and social views. Cory Lemke, Vice Chairperson of Democrats Abroad Republic of Korea, hosted the discussion. First Vote highlights voters in battlegrounds states with different political leanings. The subjects of the documentary include engaged Trump fans and progressive journalists, showcasing the diversity of the Asian American electorate. 

    Throughout the film, Yi Chen explores the meaning of identity to Asian American voters, especially those living in the South.  In her discussion with the AAPI caucus, Chen spoke about her research, which she conducted through interviews and demographic analysis. Subjects said their families, childhood experiences, values, and cultural elements  all came into play when they began to engage with politics.  As a notable dividing trait, Chen shared that first generation Asian immigrants tend to lean more Republican, while second and third generation Asian Americans are traditionally more Democratic. Chen touches on a number of topics relevant to her work including voting rights, immigration, and why engaging new diverse voters matters so much.

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  • published Anya's Mom's Dumplings in News 2020-11-29 09:15:35 -0500

    Recipes from Home: Anya's Mom's Dumplings

    Growing up, we made dumplings often enough that it became a semi-regular thing in my household.

    Sometimes, my mother would invite her few Chinese friends over and we’d spend an hour or two making dumplings, then eating until our stomachs hurt. Their children, my sister, and I pressed the edges of the wrappers together carefully, using a fork sometimes to create the ridges. My mother and her friends, chatting absently, were ten times faster than the rest of us. My aunt, who I see once every few years when we take the trip to my mother’s hometown, uses one hand to fold dumplings, a skill I have yet to acquire or understand.

    I’m better now than I was when I first started out, even to the point that I can teach my German friends how to plop the right amount of dumpling filling into the wrapper, open on your palm, and carefully tuck the sides in. It’s become a tradition for my group of friends here for Lunar New Year; my girlfriend has even mastered the perfect fold. I use my mother’s recipe, which she typed up and sent to me in an email a year after I moved out and requested while feeling homesick. It’s one of the most concrete, tangible things from Chinese culture I can share.

    Anya’s Mom’s Dumpling Recipe

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  • November News: Giving Thanks and Celebrating Our Victory

    We did it! 🥳 👏 We are so excited about the election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris, and we hope that you have all been able to celebrate and breathe a bit of a sigh of relief. On January 20, 2021, Kamala Harris will be the first AAPI and black woman to hold the office of Vice President.

    In addition, we want to congratulate all the AAPI candidates that won election or reelection this year. Kai Kahele of Hawaii and Marilyn Strickland of Washington will join the House of Representatives as new Democratic AAPI Members of Congress. Congressman Andy Kim of New Jersey also comfortably won re-election, increasing his margins after a tight election race in 2018. A total of 153 AAPI candidates were successful at the state and local levels. You can find a list of who won on the Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies website.

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  • published Recipes From Home – Submit Yours in News 2020-11-23 06:09:26 -0500

    Recipes From Home – – Submit Yours

    Your grandmother’s kimchee, your Sunday afternoon poi snack, Dad’s lobster noodles, or that slice of Chicago pizza - these all represent a piece of home to us.  And as Americans overseas, it’s often hard to get your fix of food from home – whether you’re in Tokyo, missing your lasagna fix; or in Munich, searching for a dim sum restaurant.

    We’d like to create a place to share the stories and recipes that remind you of home, that make you laugh, or that solve a problem!  We’ll post them here on our webpages and in our newsletter. If you have a video, even better – send us the link!

    ►Submit Your Recipe From Home

    Here's an example from Anya, one of the AAPI caucus steering committee members!

    Anya’s Mom’s Dumpling Wrappers Recipe

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