Meet the Board

Board Members 2021-2022

AAJA-Asia board members are selected through a chapter-wide nomination and voting process. Board members serve a two-year term.

 

K. Oanh Ha, President

K. Oanh Ha oversees Asia coverage of consumer and healthcare news for Bloomberg. She joined the news organization in 2010 as Vietnam bureau chief. Before joining Bloomberg, she worked as a host and reporter for KQED Public Radio in San Francisco on its nationally-syndicated program, Pacific Time, examining the connections between Asia, the U.S. and Asian American issues. She’s also reported for the San Jose Mercury News, covering Asia Pacific affairs, technology and small businesses. She was born in Vietnam and grew up in California.

K. Oanh Ha also serves as our National Advisory Board Representative.

 

Zela Chin, Executive Vice President 

An award-winning journalist, Zela is the principal reporter for the weekly, prime-time documentary program Pearl Magazine on TVB, the largest broadcaster in Hong Kong. Prior to launching Pearl Magazine, she was a reporter with TVB’s business feature program, Money Magazine. TVB shows reach 2.3 million households in the city, and over 300 million households worldwide. 

Zela started her career at CNN headquarters in the U.S. and later joined CNN in Hong Kong to produce Talk Asia. Highlights include interviews with Alibaba CEO Jack Ma, scientist Stephen Hawking and opera singer Luciano Pavarotti. 

 

Gilles Demptos, Director for Asia Pacific

Gilles is the Director for Asia Pacific of the Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA). Prior to joining this organization, Gilles has worked at advancing press freedom and the sustainability of quality, independent journalism for over 15 years at WAN-IFRA, the World Association of News publishers, in particular as Director of Asia between 2014 and 2018. More recently, Gilles was heading Public Policy and Government Affairs APAC for the news and media industries at Google. Gilles has also been the editor of the Asian Newsmedia Focus magazine for almost a decade. 

 

Jeanhee Kim, Treasurer

Jeanhee Kim is a veteran news and business journalist and editor. A contributing editor for Forbes Asia based in Singapore, she is a native New Yorker who worked at Crain’s New York Business–where she produced the 40 Under 40, Fast 50, and Most Powerful Women lists–and Money magazine. At Oxygen Media, she launched the late-but-great ka-Ching.com, a personal finance and career site for women.

 

Rebecca Isjwara, Secretary

Rebecca Isjwara is a reporter with S&P Global Market Intelligence, covering banking and financial services in APAC. She currently serves as the secretary for the Asia chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association – Asia, where she champions journalism through workshops, events, and annual conferences.

Rebecca graduated from the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. In her free time, she loves to brew a good cup of coffee, delve into third culture literary works, and paint. She can be reached at @beckyisj on pretty much every social media because she is a millennial.

 

Holly Chik, co-Vice President, Hong Kong 

Holly Chik is a reporter covering China for the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong. She served on the AAJA-Asia board as the student representative in 2019.

 

 

Kari Soo Lindberg, co-Vice President, Hong Kong 

Kari Soo Lindberg is a former nutritionist turned journalist. She previously reported on indigenous textile rights in Guatemala and the American prison system as a freelance journalist. She now works at Bloomberg in Hong Kong. She plans to move to South American within the next decade to cover the Chinese investments in the region. She loves meeting new people and can be reached at @Karisoo1 on Twitter.

 

Carina Lee, Vice President, Seoul

Carina Lee works in the media business field as she is currently in charge of acquiring movies and TV series in Korea. Previously, she has built up her career across sales & programming strategy for foreign media including A+E Networks & Discovery Networks. She graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She loves to dance and watch movies with a cup of tea.

 

Sheryl Lee, co-Vice President, Singapore and Southeast Asia

Sheryl Lee is a staff writer at Asian Scientist Magazine, where she covers science, business and culture with a focus on Asia. She reports on topics ranging from climate change and cities to AI and health. A former student representative turned Southeast Asia Co-VP, Sheryl graduated from Nanyang Technological University in 2020 with degrees in Accountancy and Business Analytics. She has reported for the Associated Press, Bloomberg and The Straits Times in Singapore and Hong Kong, and previously worked as an adventure tour guide. Sheryl loves meeting new people and anything outdoors. You can find her on Twitter at @sherylleett.

 

Tom Benner, co-Vice President, Singapore and Southeast Asia

Tom Benner is a Singapore-based journalist. He writes news stories for Al Jazeera English, columns for Mainichi Shimbun’s bilingual news magazine Mainichi Weekly, and works as a copy editor and fact-checker at Forbes Asia. He has served as editor of N3Magazine, the official publication of N3Conference. He became an elected board member of the Singapore Press Club in 2013 and joined the AAJA-Asia board in 2019. Before relocating to Singapore from Boston, Mass., in 2012, Tom worked in the US as a statehouse bureau chief, editorial writer, and editor of a street paper.

 

Ryusei Takahashi, co-Vice President, Japan

As National Correspondent for the Japan Times, Ryusei covers the novel coronavirus, Tokyo Metropolitan Government, Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games and climate change by way of the Japanese environment ministry. He joined the paper as a staff writer in November 2018 after graduating with a journalism degree earlier that year from Seattle University in Washington, United States. Ryusei is Japanese-American and was born and raised in Oregon.

 

Shoko Oda, co-Vice President, Tokyo 

Shoko Oda is an equities reporter for Bloomberg News in Tokyo. She covers the Japanese stock market and its inner workings. Before joining Bloomberg, she was a student at the University of Southern California, where she majored in International Relations and East Asian Area Studies. When she’s not reporting, she’s out running in the nooks and crannies of Tokyo. 

 

Yuri Nagano, National Advisory Board Representative

Yuri Nagano has been reporting from California and Tokyo for the last two decades. She has been a reporter, producer and editor in print and broadcast for news organizations including the Los Angeles Times, Associated Press, International New York Times, a Financial Times-related publication, Bloomberg BNA, The Economist, public broadcaster KQED and Public Radio International. She started her career as a staff producer for Japan’s public broadcasting network NHK, where she won awards for her TV programs. She has served as a board member for AAJA-Asia since 2010. She enjoys hiking and practicing yoga in her free time. Follow her on Twitter @yurinagano.

 

Glenn van Zutphen, At-Large Board member

Glenn van Zutphen is an international journalist and the Founder of VanMedia Group Pte Ltd, a global media consultancy. He is passionate about coaching journalists, high-performing business leaders and the next generation of diverse executives.

Glenn also hosts the Weekend Mornings radio show on Singapore’s MoneyFM 89.3 every Saturday and Sunday; he interviews local and international newsmakers. In over 25 years as a professional journalist, Glenn has worked in TV, print, radio, and online news for CNBC Asia, CNN International, USAToday, NHK (Japan Broadcasting Corp.), and others. He’s an active member of AmCham Singapore and the Asia Professional Speakers Singapore; Glenn is a board member of The East-West Center and the Asian American Journalist Association.  He is a Past-President of the American Association of Singapore, Singapore’s Foreign Correspondents Association, and The Atlanta Press Club.

He co-authored the marketing book “Happy Customers Everywhere” and “The American Journey in Singapore”, and contributed chapters in four editions of “Living in Singapore Reference Guide.”  Glenn, his wife, and their two children are Singapore Permanent Residents.

 

Regina Hing, At-Large Board member

Regina Hing (Regina Lay) was the Head of News for and an anchor at Bloomberg TV Philippines, running a team of more than 2 dozen and overseeing the daily editorial agenda for the network. In the 3 years that the channel was on air, BTVPH successfully overtook its main competitor in business news, in terms of online viewership and engagement. When the channel folded in 2018, she took on freelance hosting and consulting gigs for a little while–including training newsrooms under the Google News Initiative program–and eventually co-founding an electric bike startup that aims to change the way people commute. Before joining Bloomberg TV Philippines, Regina was a Senior Producer/Evening Editor on the Business Desk at Channel NewsAsia in Singapore, helping produce the channel’s coverage of business and financial markets globally. She holds a Masters in Business and Economic Reporting from New York University. 

 

June Lee, Student Representative

June Seong Lee from Seoul, South Korea, is majoring in International Studies at Hanyang University. For the past 8 years, he has been conducting one and one in-depth interviews with people of all levels of society, from the Sewol Ferry Disaster victims, members of congress, to foreign reporters in the fields of the story. He recently participated in global youth discussions hosted by the Korean government, such as the 2019 Model G20 Summit, and the 1st Korea-ASEAN Youth Summit. He was also invited by the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family of Korea to represent youths at a regular foreign press meeting in December 2020. In 2021, he received a new year’s gift from the president of South Korea for his contributions to the nation as a youth.Serving as a student representative from January to June 2021, June ambitions to do his best to promote various activities that AAJA Asia specially serve for students across Asia and the US, and explain the core values of journalism today with AAJA members. 

 

Shameel Ibrahim, Student Representative

Shameel is a third year journalism student at the Hong Kong Baptist University. He mostly specialises in islamophobia and Muslim affairs as well as stories that impact people in our everyday lives. Shameel hopes to connect and understand people with his journalism, to represent the weak and the oppressed and to voice out the problems facing our societies.

 

Sherlyn Sim, Student Representative

Sherlyn Sim is a Communications undergraduate at The University of Melbourne who has written for Singapore’s The Straits Times and The New Paper. She’s eager to connect like-minded aspiring journalists and relate her positive experiences in AAJA-Asia with them. Having participated in AAJA-Asia’s student activities in N3Conference and contributed to N3Mag, she would love to similarly create exciting opportunities for students to form long-term connections and grow professionally.

 

AAJA-Asia would also like to express its heartfelt gratitude to all its former board members who greatly contributed to shape this Chapter into the unique organization it is today. Their names can be found here.