"PNS began as a way to express the thoughts of the people who did not have a voice."
"That's one of the great things about NAM, they have allowed all visions to be expressed even if they are contrary to what some people think they should be. That's the principle at the heart of NAM, everyone has the right to air because speech is not harmful."
"We've allowed all cultures, all minds colliding and sometimes we have irritated some people but the principal is that we still stand fast for people having the right to speak even if it's not pleasant speech, as long as it's not disrespectful speech."
George Koo recently retired from Deloitte and has been a cross-border business advisor to high tech companies based in the U.S., China, Japan, or Taiwan for the past 32 years. Currently, he serves on the board of directors of Las Vegas Sands. He is a member of the Pacific Council for International Policy and the China Committee of PCIP, and is an advisor for China's Overseas Friendship Association and the Chinese Enterprise Association USA.
"The most essential and critical value is that NAM provides a platform for all the alternative voices to the mainstream."
"I really feel that the mainstream doesn't represent my views, it doesn't always tell me what I want to know and I feel it's important that especially with ethnic minorities rapidly becoming a majority in America, that they have the ability to express their opinion and share it with the rest of America."
Jamal Dajani is the Vice President of Middle East, North Africa, Latin America, and the Caribbean at Internews Network. Previously, Dajani was the Vice President of International News at Link TV where he co-created and produced more than 2,000 installments of Mosaic: World News From the Middle East, winner of the prestigious Peabody Award. Dajani served under Mayor Gavin Newsom on the San Francisco Human Rights Commission and was the first Arab-American Chair of the Immigrant Rights Commission. He was also the President of the Arab Cultural & Community Center in San Francisco.
"Having worked in media for so long with a focus on diversity and ethnic groups as a journalist and as a producer, I believe strongly in ethnic media and the future of media in general in the U.S. - and NAM stands for that."
"NAM is the organization that is dedicated and devoted to the growth and the empowerment of ethnic and local media outlets."
"Because even with all our work - we still have a lot of work ahead of us to level the playing field. We've made huge strides, but we're still not there. We still are not given the microphone, the platform to express our own ideas, and this stems from the idea that others can speak on our behalf. The mainstream in media has not been satisfying our needs, but we have as much a right as every other citizen. I feel that my voice is just as important as everyone else's. NAM fills the void for us on the national level, but also on the local level, those huge papers, media outlets - sometimes we are invisible to them. Where does the average person go to when they want to know what's happening? Where are they going to have their voice? We can keep our communities connected, we can empower our communities. Our role is more needed than ever."
James Bettinger is the director for the John S. Knight Fellowships for Professional Journalists at Stanford University. He is additionally the chair of the department's Daniel Pearl Memorial Internship Committee. He was a regular columnist for the San Jose Mercury News Sunday magazine and his articles have appeared in the Boston Globe, the Washington Post, and MSNBC.com. He is also a member of the Advisory Council of the Commonwealth Club of Silicon Valley and serves on the board for the Navajo Times.
"News media is how we learn about things we don't already know about, and to have an ability to read the Chinese press, the Vietnamese press, the Spanish language press, is a great help to somebody like me."
"I believe in the care and feeding and nurturing of ethnic media as a broadening agent of the society. I think it's a key and underappreciate force in niches of society that aren't reached by mainstream media."
Frank J. Quevedo is principal of The Quevedo Group LLC which was founded in 2009. He is a retired vice president of Southern California Edison; prior to that he worked for ConAgra for seventeen years.
He sits on a number of boards and advisory committees including: the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute; St. Joseph Hospital of Orange; Edmund G. "Pat" Brown Institute of Public Affairs; Orange County Hispanic Education Endowment Fund; Asian American Justice Center; Luevano Fund; Alliance for a Better Community (ABC); Hispanas for Political Equality (HOPE); Plaza Community Services, New America Media and Legacy LA.
Mr. Quevedo previously served on the boards of the Watts Health Foundation; White Memorial Medical Center and its Foundation; Coro Southern California; East Los Angeles YMCA; Puente Learning Center; Cathedral High School; Thomas and Ethel Bradley Foundation; The Orange County Community Foundation; Asian Pacific American Legal Center; Southwest Voter Educational Fund; The Women’s Foundation of California (he was the first male to chair a women’s foundation in the nation); and on the board of the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF), where he served as its chair on five separate occasions.
He was an appointee of President Nixon as well as Governor Jerry Brown, and served in Washington D.C., in the Reagan administration in 1982 as chief of staff to Commissioner Tony Gallegos at the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). He also served under Los Angeles Mayors Riordan and Hahn on their workforce incentive boards.
He received his B.A. degree in political science from the University of California at Riverside, and has been selected by Hispanic Business Magazine on its annual "100 Most Influential Hispanics" listing on four separate occasions.
Lawrence Wilkinson is Chairman of Heminge & Condell (H & C), an investment and strategic advisory firm, and Co-Founder of Global Business Network. He is also the director and adviser to Ealing Studios, the oldest continuously operating film studio in the world, and served as Director of Oxygen Media Inc, which he co-founded in 1998. He additionally helped form and then served as Director and Chief Architect of Wired Ventures, the partnership that built and managed Wired Magazine and Wired Digital/HotWired. He is Vice-Chair of Common Sense Media and serves as a director of the Rural Development Institute.
"I've learned in a variety of ways over the years just how important independent media is. I've been involved in a number of efforts to foster independent media where it's been threatened or nonexistent and have seen how important it is to both economic and political development around the world. PNS and now NAM have been a very vital and very important independent voice in the media that can't be undervalued and needs to be supported."
"I've also learned that diversity has brought a range of points of view and modes of experience, which is an extraordinary strength for a culture and society, so anything one can do to enable more voices serves not just those voices, but more broadly feeds back to the health of the society as a whole. This is at the very heart of NAM's mission."
"I've watched this organization pioneer brand new ways to turn diversity into strength, whether it's in the context of joint projects of creating infrastructure to help the ethnic and non-mainstream media, it's been genuinely remarkable and intensely valuable."
"At a time when the dominant instinct in our society seems to be to circle the wagons to become more insular, more cautious, more conservative, if not downright xenophobic, an organization that is resolutely open, that celebrates different ways of seeing and understanding the same things is particularly valuable now as a kind of hope chest for a society that is going to need to wake up from this bad dream and get to being the engine of inclusion that it wants and needs to be."
Maria Cardona is currently a Principal at the Dewey Square Group (DSG), a national public affairs firm, where she heads the firm's Public Affairs Practice. She was named one of the top 100 most influential Latinos by Hispanic Business Magazine. A frequent political commentator on CNN, MSNBC, Fox, Univision, and Telemundo, Cardona served as a Senior Adviser to the Hilary Clinton for President Campaign, as well as on Senator Clinton's Hispanic Outreach team. She also serves on the boards of Citizenship Counts and the National Hispana Leadership Institute.
"Ethnic communities are the future of America's economy, that's where the growth of small business, entrepreneurship, creativity all lie. Ethnic media can educate the country on the importance of what ethnic communities bring to the U.S. economy and to the fabric of who we are as a nation."
"The main value of NAM is that it brings to the table the cream of the crop of ethnic journalists and ethnic media – not just in terms of professional journalism, but also in terms of knowledge of the communities that they represent, the issues those communities are interested in, and a thirst for other issues that might not seem obvious, bringing them to the attention of these communities where there may not have been that attention before."
Rosario Anaya is the Executive Director of Mission Language and Vocational School, Inc. She served twice as San Francisco School Board President and was the first Latin American woman elected to public office in the city's history. She is additionally a member of the Latino-Jewish Relations Committee, the San Francisco Latino Coalition, and the 2010 Census Complete Count Committee. In 2009 she received the Latino Heritage Education Award in San Francisco.
"As a lifelong community activist for the most underserved, and being myself an immigrant from Bolivia, I have seen firsthand the importance of bringing a voice to those who don't have one, through ethnic media outlets. Pacific News Service, New California Media, and now New America Media has made this possible."
"My strong support of NAM's mission, combined with the leadership of Sandy Close, makes volunteering as a Board member its own reward. It gives me the opportunity to give back to the community and contribute to projects I believe in and strongly support."
Thuy Tranh Vu founded Radio Saigon Houston with her husband in 1999 to unite the voices of Houston's Vietnamese community and provide a channel for the outside community to reach the Vietnamese. They created a second station, Radio Saigon Dallas in 2007 and are currently working on a 24/7 digital television station in Houston and another in Dallas. She has been an Images & Voices of Hope Thought Leader since 2007 and has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Asian American Journalist Association. She was inducted to the Greater Houston Women Chamber of Commerce's Hall of Fame in 2009. She also currently serves on the board of directors for the Houston American Red Cross and Houston's International Business District Management.
"The main reason I chose to volunteer my time for NAM is because I share NAM's commitment and goal of advocating the crucial role ethnic media plays in America. Without NAM's invaluable efforts to highlight headlines being made by and in ethnic communities, my job would be much more difficult. I made the transition from mainstream media to ethnic media to return to the core reason of why I became a journalist: to be the eyes and ears of my community and to be directly connected and accountable to my audience. NAM's support of ethnic media helps my work be more actively utilized and meaningful. Mainstream media can not adequately cover the melting pot that is America without the contributions of ethnic media because of our built-in trust in the community due to understanding of our community's needs."
"The main values of NAM's existence is the creation of a viable, sustainable bridge between mainstream and ethnic media. NAM does an excellent job of illustrating the value ethnic media brings to niche audiences, who are apt to trust and turn to voices that are directly present and involved. The media's role is to be a mirror held up to the community it is serving, good or bad. NAM understands that ethnic media is the gateway to such communities and each community's contributions benefit America overall. Bridges and gateways communicate exchange and movement, of collaboration."