SLI 14 team

SLI Facilitators 2014 playing with gender norms by cross dressing.

Youth Leaders

The youth are what make our programs possible. They are also why we offer our programming.

At Chinatown Youth Initiatives, we do not only believe that today’s youth are the leaders of tomorrow, but that they can be the leaders of today. All of our programs are youth-run and youth-lead, which means our youth leaders take the initiative to develop new programs, run workshops and activities, and design curriculum.

Current Youth Leaders: 2015-16

Chinatown Literacy Project 2015-2016

  • Crystal Wu, Coordinator
  • Connie Chen, Coordinator
  • Linda Chen, Coordinator
  • Frances Hisgen, Outreach Director

Chinatown Beautification Day 2015

  • Aaron Yau, Events Coordinator
  • Alice Shih, Public Relations Coordinator
  • Debbie He, Fundraising Coordinator
  • Katie Lam, Workshops Coordinator

Summer Leadership Institute 2016

  • Betty Fong, Coordinator
  • Wilson Wong, Coordinator

Program Advisors

Chinatown Youth Initiatives would not be possible without the help of our volunteer program advisors. Advisors take on a host of challenges, from providing guidance to our youth, advising to our programming, and teaching ESL classes, to supporting CYI in its long-term development, and keeping in touch with our alumni, each and every one of our volunteers is a valued member of our community.

If you would like to get involved with CYI, please e-mail us at!

Current Program Advisors

Benjamin Fang, Chinatown Beautification Day and Youth Conference Advisor
Benjamin began his involvement in 2008 as a Chinatown Literacy Project (CLP) language partner. He later served as CLP coordinator. Ben was also a participant and summer facilitator for Summer Leadership Institute (SLI) from 2010-2012. He has been to (almost) every CBD since 2008 and has the shirts to prove it. Ben studied newspaper and online journalism, political science and Asian American studies at Syracuse University. He recently graduated in May 2015. He also tweets @BenFang93

Jenny Ye, Chinatown Beautification Day and Youth Conference Advisor

 A lifelong Chinatown resident, Jenny joined CYI in 2005 as a language partner in the Chinatown Literacy Project and continued as a participant and facilitator for the Summer Leadership Institute. She studied computer science and ethnic studies at Harvard College and is a producer on the Data News Team at WNYC. She tweets @thepapaya.

Samantha Wu, Chinatown Literacy Project Advisor
Samantha Wu is the Advisor of the Chinatown Literacy Project She is also a software engineer and 4th grade tutor. Samantha graduated from Wellesley College with a Computer Science major and experience with student organizations focused on minority rights and interests. She continues her work in both interests with a focus on youth education and empowerment.

Sonora Yun, Summer Leadership Institute Advisor

Sonora has been deeply involved in youth programming in various community settings since 2010. She studied anthropology and psychology at Grinnell College and is currently the Youth Services Coordinator at Teen Resource Center. Follow her on instagram