The CAUSE Leadership Institute (CLI), is a six-month fellowship program for high-potential working professionals that develops leaders to effectively advocate for the Asian Pacific American (APA) community.

6 Months

Fellows must be able to commit to attending all mandatory full-day training sessions  from January 2018 to June 2018. Sessions occur in and around Pasadena, CA and Downtown, Los Angeles.

Fellowship Experience

Additional readings and assignments may be required in between sessions to ensure an optimal learning experience.

Program Fee

Each fellow is required to pay a $360 program fee (can be paid in monthly installments of $60). Dues will go towards funding session facilities, resources, and meals.

About

The CAUSE Leadership Institute (CLI) is a political leadership and advocacy training certificate program for high-potential professionals with seasoned leadership experience and a passion for serving the needs of the APA community in California. Participants complete the program armed with the skills and connections vital to advocate for the APA community. Graduates of this program have gone on to change the political landscape in the region through elected office and leadership roles in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors.

CLI sessions are comprised of intimate policy roundtable discussions, civic leadership development workshops, and leadership luncheons with some of the top political movers and shakers of our region. Training sessions and activities are led by a unique array of seasoned political professionals, civic leaders, and other issue experts who will share their best practices and personal insights.

CLI is open to participants through a nomination-only process. Nominations can come from CAUSE Board members or elected officials at the county, state, and federal levels. Nominators are invited to identify and nominate two candidates per year for the program who show political and civic promise. While this program will provide some of the connections and skills needed for pursuing public office, any individual desiring community leadership roles in the public, private, or nonprofit sectors are encouraged to apply.

The program was co-founded by CAUSE and USC Dornsife’s Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics to ensure a pipeline of political and civic leadership for the APA community.

Program Components

Policy Roundtable Discussions

Participants will meet with political thought leaders for candid discussions on the current state of various policy issues. These intimate, off-the-record conversations provide exclusive insight into the latest policy developments. Speakers provide the tools and knowledge needed for participants to effectively form personal platforms. Policy issue focuses vary by year and have included: K-12 education, healthcare, energy and the environment, workforce development, transportation, and housing.

Civic Leadership Development

CLI participants meet with experts to develop essential professional skills and modern leadership qualities needed to effectively advocate for our community. This may include public speaking, messaging, and campaign mechanics. Skills gained will prepare CLI participants for civic leadership after the program’s end.

Leadership Luncheons

CAUSE’s network gives CLI Fellows exclusive access to the movers and shakers of California politics. Each speaker shares their personal experiences and leadership journeys. Speakers share their own best practices on public service and civic leadership and provide deeper perspective into what it takes to lead our community. Past speakers have included The Hon. Ed Chau, The Hon. John Chiang, Rusty Hicks, Gary Toebben, and The Hon. Betty Yee.

Connections & Community

The CAUSE family is a network united around a shared desire to advance the APA community. Each CLI cohort is encouraged to connect with each other, the speakers, and the larger community. CLI participants are also invited to exclusive networking, political, and community events (as space allows).

2017 Fellows

Our program is highly selective and each member of our cohort is selected based on their leadership abilities, public service, and community involvement. All of our program fellows are identified and nominated by leading elected officials or a CAUSE Board Member.

Adam Hsu

Adam Hsu

Field Representative

Office of CA State Assemblymember Ed Chau

Charlotte White

Charlotte White

Executive Assistant

RDJ Strategic Advisors

Claire Kitayama

Claire Kitayama

Development Operations Officer/span>

United Way of Greater Los Angeles

Connie Lee

Connie Lee

Vice President

Citi Community Capital

David Chiang

David Chiang

Deputy District Attorney

Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office

Edward Lee

Edward Lee

Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine

Keck School of Medicine at USC

Faith Lee

Faith Lee

Field Representative

Office of CA State Assemblymember Chris Holden

Gerrard Panahon

Gerrard Panahon

Resource Analyst

Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Hannah Cho

Hannah Cho

Secretary

Korean American Democratic Committee

Hildy Aguinaldo

Hildy Aguinaldo

Associate General Counsel

UnitedHealthcare

Jinha Park

Jinha Park

President

California Radiological Society

John Yi

John Yi

Advocacy Director

American Lung Association in California

Laura Pong

Lauren Pong

Constituent Services Representative

Office of Congressmember Ed Royce

Tae Kang

Tae Kang

Special Projects

Harbor Freight Tools for Schools

Important Dates & Deadlines

Event Date
Application Opens Tuesday, October 24, 2017
Application Closes Friday, December 8, 2017, 11:59 PM PST
Nominations Due Friday, December 8, 2017, 11:59 PM PST
Leadership Institute Session #1 Saturday, January 10, 2018
Leadership Institute Session #2 Saturday, February 17, 2018
Leadership Institute Session #3 Saturday, March 17, 2018
Leadership Institute Session #4 Saturday, April 21, 2018
Leadership Institute Session #5 Saturday, May 19, 2018
Leadership Institute Session #6 Saturday, June 16, 2018

What Our Alumni Say

  • "The CAUSE Political Institute was tremendously valuable in helping me gain insight on the challenges and opportunities of public service from leading political practitioners."

    The Honorable Thomas Wong President of the Board, San Gabriel Valley Municipal Water District
  • "This is a great program to learn how to be an active agent in your community and not a passive bystander."

    The Honorable Henry Lo Boardmember, Garvey School District

This program is generously supported by: