Welcoming AAJA’s Executive Leadership Program Asia 2023 Cohort

The Asian American Journalists Association’s Asia Chapter (AAJA-Asia) is proud to announce the fourth Asia cohort of its Executive Leadership Program (ELP). Launched on 25 May with a series of in-person sessions at the New.Now.Next Media conference (N3Con 2023) in Singapore, this year’s ELP will continue online with regular virtual sessions until July 29.

Run in parallel with AAJA’s 27th Executive Leadership Program in the US, ELP Asia 2023 brings together 12 mid to senior-level journalists from across Asia to engage in targeted professional development, cross-cultural peer learning and mentorship from top executives in media. Thanks to a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) fellowship supported by the Google News Initiative (GNI), 10 participants have received a full tuition grant to attend the training.

For more than 20 years, AAJA’s leadership program has fostered the next generation of journalists who can lead in uncertain times, navigate a quickly changing media landscape in this new poly-cultural and cross-cultural world, and build a sustainable future for journalism.

ELP has trained more than 500 media professionals to date, successfully fostering a pipeline of savvy industry leaders — many at major media companies — and providing graduates with access to a robust, life-long, and supportive alumni network.

Please join us in welcoming the ELP Asia 2023 fellows below!

Abhay Regi is a 26-year-old journalist at The Caravan magazine, India’s only long-form investigative magazine. As an Assistant Editor, he has worked on commissioning, managing the investigation of, and editing several of the most politically-relevant long-form reports of Caravan. Coming from a marginalized lower-caste, Abhay felt it central to his journalism to tell stories from the social fringes. These rarely get covered because of overt censorship or because many in journalism come from Hindi-speaking, upper-caste communities that rarely deal with India’s majority. This led him to report on lower-caste communities and other marginalized groups, such as Muslims, Kashmiris, and the insurgency-hit North-East.

Aileen Rae P. Perez spent her first 11 years in journalism creating award-winning documentaries and telling compelling stories as a television producer. In 2014, Aileen took the big leap and crossed over to digital. She used her experience in storytelling and optimized different social media platforms to promote serious, hard-hitting issues. She and her team developed a mix of entertaining content alongside public service features, while pioneering a conversational tone of voice designed to engage their millions of followers online. Her penchant for pop culture in general, and dissecting production and digital promotional strategies of different entertainment companies continue to inspire her work.

Alice Huang is a financial news reporter at Bloomberg News. Working at the China credit team, she’s been covering the world’s second largest credit market with scoops, enterprise stories as well as TV reporting. She follows some of the nation’s most high-profiles stories including Evergrande’s restructuring as well as distressed debt and bankruptcy lawsuits in the Hong Kong court. Alice currently takes on the role of deputy team leader and hope to polish her management skills to help her better guide the team.

Devidutta Tripathy is a New Delhi-based editor and the deputy team leader for the South Asia Breaking News team of Bloomberg. Prior to joining Bloomberg News in 2018, he was a reporter for Reuters for more than a decade. Devidutta has extensively written on some of India’s biggest companies and the billionaires helming those, financial institutions and markets, and government policies during his reporting career of about 15 years. His team at Bloomberg News strives to get subscribers first and accurate news from across the sub-continent. Devidutta was part of the Bloomberg News team that covered the G-20 Bali and G-7 Hiroshima summits.

Jenny Hsu is a former journalist with The Wall Street Journal, mainly covering political and energy news in Taiwan and Hong Kong. After her decade-plus stint in journalism, she switched over to public relations and worked for Alibaba Group in their Hangzhou global headquarters. In 2022, Jenny started her own corporate communications firm in Taiwan, specializing in helping Taiwan-based start-ups to expand their footprints overseas and advising multinationals that are interested in setting up shops in Taiwan.

A media professional specializing in Broadcast Media, Kywe Kywe Htun currently works as a Deputy Director at Mizzima Media Co.,Ltd. She has been working at Mizzima Media Co.,Ltd since 2017. Kywe Kywe was born and lived in Yangon, Myanmar until February 2021 when the Military Coup started. After the Military Coup, Mizzima Media was banned and its staff had to flee to the liberated areas as they were about to be arrested. She continued her media works from the liberated areas and arrived in Texas, USA, in December 2021. The responsibilities of the Deputy Director (Production & Broadcasting) are manifold. They include the management of the newsroom, jointly with the Managing Editor, all admin and management work throughout the production process, drafting scripts for programs, designing graphics, and any urgently needed editing. Additionally, Kywe Kywe is responsible for all Mizzima production platforms, jointly with the Head of Broadcasting, the scheduling and planning for both Mizzima TV channels, and for the all-round management of Production & Broadcasting.

Lakshmi Sivadas is based in Bangalore, India. She is a Program Manager and Engagement Lead for JournalismAI at Polis, the journalism think-tank at the London School of Economics, supported by the Google News Initiative. There, she manages and runs daily operations for the international journalism collaboration, the JournalismAI Fellowship. Her interest lies in community-centred journalism and in making global newsrooms’ leadership more inclusive of journalists from the Global South. She is a graduate of the Newmark J-School at CUNY. In her free time, she’s a crochet enthusiast and an amateur poet.

An experienced journalist who is keen on exploring digital media, Lani Diana is a full time journalist at Tempo Inti Media, one of the Indonesia-based media company engaged in publishing and printing, also online media. Lani qualified for and was granted a fellowship from Aliansi Jurnalis Independen (AJI) and PT MRT Jakarta-Indonesia in 2018-2023. As part as the fellowship activities, she joined journalism workshops and training to learn how to innovate and improve her knowledge and journalism skills. She covers economy, environment, and public policy in Jakarta. Lani currently holds the position of editor at Tempo

Mark Angeles is a veteran journalist with international news and managerial experience. In 2015, he launched a newspaper in Myanmar as the country was emerging from decades of military rule. While in Myanmar he wrote about the country’s continued reliance on poppy and opium production. He previously wrote about the declining numbers of adult men in Mozambique because of the country’s cultural disdain for the use of condoms. In 2001, while a reporter at The Philadelphia Daily News, Mark co-founded J Camp, one of AAJA’s signature programs, with Josh DuLac and Neal Justin. He currently works as a freelance journalist in Hong Kong, where he worked for the South China Morning Post.

Prime Sarmiento is a Filipino, mid-career journalist who specializes in covering the Southeast Asian region. She’s been working as a reporter and editor, with focus on business and economics issues, for nearly 30 years. She has extensive experience working in ethnically diverse newsrooms. Prior to her current posting in Hong Kong, Prime has worked in the Philippines, Singapore and Brunei.

Roshini Claire Anthony has about 15 years of experience in the healthcare/medical publishing field, about 11 of them in a reporting role. During this time, Roshini has become well-versed in creating content for a variety of audiences including medical professionals and consumers. She is skilled in writing and editing health/medical articles, managing publications, interviewing key opinion leaders in the healthcare industry, training junior writers, and serving as a correspondent at local, regional, and international conferences.

Yvette Kwok is the Director of Growth and Product at The Initium. With a diverse background encompassing digital marketing agencies, non-profits, and start-ups, Yvette has gained extensive experience and honed her expertise in various areas, including branding, marketing, growth strategies, operations, and product development. Yvette is a feminist. She is passionate about social issues and has been actively engaged in advocating for freedom of speech and promoting gender equality, particularly in China. Yvette envisions leading her team with an agile development philosophy, striving to create a new business model for the Initium. Moreover, she is dedicated to collaborating with global partners, with the goal of expanding the influence of Chinese media on a global scale. During her free time, she spends most of her time either with her dog or rock climbing.

ELP Asia DEI Fellowship

For the third consecutive year, the Google News Initiative (GNI) is supporting AAJA-Asia’s ELP Program with Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) fellowships. Ten participants among this year’s cohort, representing journalists from under-represented communities in news media leadership, received a full tuition grant to attend the program.

About the Google News Initiative: Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. The Google News Initiative is our effort to work with the news industry to help journalism thrive in the digital age. The Google News Lab, an initiative under the GNI, was created to support the distribution and creation of the information that keeps us all informed about what’s happening in our world today – quality journalism. Today’s news organizations and media entrepreneurs are inventing new ways to discover, create and distribute news content – and we’re here to provide tools, data, and programs designed to help. For more information, visit g.co/newsinitiative.

About AAJA-Asia

The Asian American Journalists Association (AAJA) is a nonprofit educational and professional organization with more than 1,500 members across the U.S. and Asia. The Asia chapter of AAJA represents members across the Asia-Pacific region. It is a diverse, multi-ethnic community of local and international journalists and media professionals committed to supporting a vibrant press in the Asia-Pacific region. We are committed to advancing diversity and inclusion in media organizations, providing training opportunities to members, supporting students interested in journalism and advocating for fair media access.