Chase Lo, Executive Director

Chase Lo, was first introduced to CCNCTO as a participant in the youth leadership program, Ripple Effect (2009 – 2010). The year after he was hired to assist the coordination and implementation of the program (Ripple Remix) and co-organized the Youth Coalition Against Maclean’s in response to the “Too Asian” article. Chase has a BA Honours degree in sociology and was the Vice-President of the Sociology Undergraduate Student Association and Co-Chair of the Council of Arts Students’ Association at York University. With a background in community-based research, he has worked on various projects such as the Toronto Teen Survey (Planned Parenthood Toronto). For the past 2 years, as Executive Director of CCNCTO, he has successfully directed community-based projects that include the 2 year Elder Care Research Project (funded by the City of Toronto) and the Toronto Civic Literacy Collaborative project. He also acts as Co-Chair of the Chinese Interagency Network’s Labour Committee.

Melissa Lai, Administrative Assistant

Ni hao! My name is Melissa (Lai Jian Rong). I am the Administrative Assistant at CCNCTO. I was the project coordinator for a few CCNCTO projects, such as the Workers’ Rights Project (2013-2014), Toronto Civic Literacy Collaboration Project (2014-2016), and the Elder Care Research Project (2016). I have enjoyed my work and the work CCNCTO does for the community quite well. I believe that community should be connected by empowerment and various community-led cross-generation and cross-cultural civic awareness activities. CCNCTO provides me such opportunities to learn and support the connection to happen.

Jaclyn Wong, Project Manager (Live Well, Take Action: Ambassador Program for East Asian Youth)

Jaclyn is one of the project managers for a CCNCTO pilot initiative called Live Well, Take Action: Ambassador Program for East Asian Youth, which aims to explore topics such as cultural identity and social justice, and promote awareness of positive well-being amongst East Asian youth. She is also currently working as a supply teacher at the York Region District School Board, as well as pursuing a Master’s degree in education at Trent University. Her professional, as well as personal interests, include student development, mental health, intersectionality, and community building. Jaclyn self-identifies as a cis female, racialized settler and her family comes from Hong Kong and southern China. Her Chinese name is 王斯屏.

Han Zhang, Project Coordinator (Chinese Seniors’ Storytelling Workshop Project)

Han is the project coordinator for CCNCTO’s Chinese Seniors’ Storytelling Workshop project, which teaches Chinese seniors to use art, food and storytelling as methods for self-expression, addressing topics of social isolation and fostering intergenerational exchange.  She was also one of the Principal Investigators for CCNCTO’s 2-year community-based research project that explored the needs of elder care in the Chinese Canadian community. Han is currently a PhD Candidate in the Department of Communication and Culture at York University. Her research examines aging and elder care in transnational and cross-cultural context and how culture influences an individual’s subjectivity as a dialectical and topological process.

Elene Lam, Project Coordinator (Migrant Sex Workers Legal Training Project)

Elene Lam (LLM, LLB, MSW, BSW) has advocated for the sex workers, migrant, labour and gender justice for more than 15 years. She is the founder and director of Butterfly (Asian and Migrant sex workers support network) and Co-director of Migrant Sex Workers Project.

Justin Kong, Project Lead & Organizer (Chinese Grocery Store Worker Project – Improving Work in the Ethnic Economy)

When Justin Kong graduated from university he found himself and many of his peers thrown into the world of precarious employment and growing economic inequality. Since then he has been involved in community and labour organizing in the North American context. He believes that positive social change happens when people are able to exert and develop their own power and when people engage in collective political action, using processes that are conducive and reflective of the world, which we aspire.


Board of Directors

Alvis Choi, Chairperson

Alvis Choi currently serves as the Chair to the Board of Directors and the Head of the Advocacy Committee at CCNCTO. Alvis is a researcher, artist and organizer born and raised in Hong Kong. Prior to coming to Toronto in 2011, Alvis was the Assistant Manager at Videotage, a non-profit artist-run centre pioneering in creative community engagement through new media art across regions. Alvis is a member of the LGBTQ community and is committed to the work of community empowerment, anti-racism, coalition building, labour rights and anti-oppression. They previously served on the Board of Mayworks Festival of Working People and the Arts. As the Chairperson of CCNCTO, Alvis strives to create an inclusive space in organizing efforts and pushes for greater justice in both Chinese and English media. Alvis holds a Master’s degrees in Environmental Studies from York University.

  A.W. Lee, Vice President Internal

An educator and a performance artist, A.W. Lee earned a PhD in Cultural Studies from Queen’s University in 2015. He is currently a postdoctoral researcher at Queen’s in the Gender Studies department. His background in sociology (PhD, ABD) and the biological sciences (BScH, MSc) has afforded him the chance to teach at various universities, including University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Queen’s University, and University of Toronto. He will be starting a visiting professorship at University of Toronto Mississauga in the Sociology department in the Fall of 2016.

Bennet Chan, Treasurer

Bennet Chan holds a Master’s of Accounting from the University of Waterloo and is a licensed Chartered Accountant. He is currently a Partner at a small sized accounting firm, Jonathan Leung CPA Professional Corporation. As the treasurer, Bennet brings his knowledge of accounting and financial experience to the board. Outside of work, Bennet enjoys travelling, the outdoors, and more recently, running.

Brian Ma, Secretary

Brian Ma is a Chartered Accountant, and was previously the Chief Financial Officer of Wesdome Gold Mines Ltd., a gold mining company publicly listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange.  He is a graduate of the University of Waterloo, and worked at Deloitte for 5 years before joining Wesdome.  Canadian-born, Brian spent his early childhood years in Hong Kong before moving back to Canada with his parents.  Brian has called Toronto home ever since.  In his spare time, Brian can often be found on a pair of skis in the winter, or in the swimming pool in the summer, always leaving enough time for dim sum though.

Christy Luo, Director

Christy Luo is the Immediate Past Chair on the Board of Directors at CCNCTO, after having served various other executive-level roles over the last 5 years. Christy is actively engaged in the public and non-profit sectors, with experience in grassroots activism as well as serving on advisory boards of various Canadian NPOs, and was nominated as CBC Champion of Change. Christy’s command of the Mandarin language has served helpful to her work with the CCNCTO board in engaging with the constituents of CCNCTO, and continues to aid her work and travels in East Asia. As a regular contributing writer to various news publications and academic periodicals, Christy is keenly interested in public affairs and economic policies. She received academic training from the London School of Economics. Professionally, Christy worked at a global strategy consulting firm and is currently a leader at a financial services firm based in Toronto.

Annie Sun, Director

Annie Sun is a poet, musician, singer/songwriter, performer, social worker and mobilizer. Annie works with newcomer communities in priority neighbourhoods supporting residents in settlement, employment, and sits on Toronto North LIP and L.H.I.O.N.S  steering groups working with agencies and residents in areas of community development, civic engagement and leadership building. Committed to empowering and amplifying marginalized voices, Annie has dedicated her life in service to social justice and equities work operating from the lens of anti-oppressive framework. Annie is a child of the diaspora. Born in Beijing, Annie moved to the United Kingdom at aged 9 before immigrating to Canada at age 14. Annie believes in using art as a powerful tool to heal, and transform communities. Annie currently serves on the CCNCTO Advocacy Committee and has previously served on the Asian Community AIDS Services Board.

Amy Tang, Director

Amy Tang is a graduate of the University of Toronto Faculty of Law and has recently completed her articles in the areas of labour and pensions law at Koskie Minsky LLP. She has experience in legal research, drafting legal submissions, and providing advice to trade union clients.  Amy is keenly interested in protecting workers’ rights and a number of social justice issues facing Chinese Canadians in the City of Toronto. Amy is also member of the Federation of Asian Canadian Lawyers and is committed to advancing greater diversity within the legal profession.

  Ben Xuhao Wang, Director

(王旭浩) is a PhD candidate in the Department of Immunology at the University of Toronto. Ben is currently involved with CCNCTO’s ongoing research projects and is responsible for drafting grant submissions. As a board member, Ben aims to expand CCNCTO’s research activities and to build strong relationships with other non-profit groups with an emphasis on youths, employment, and new immigrant issues.

Kate Zhang, Director

Kate Zhang is a Chinese-American community organizer and writer from New York City, who has previously worked in immigrant labor organizing at the Street Vendor Project, National Domestic Workers Alliance, and the Workers’ Justice Project. As a youth, she served as the former Executive Director of Chinatown Youth Initiatives, and co-founded the Chinatown Literacy Project, an award-winning intergenerational English teaching program that connects high school and college youth with new Chinese immigrants through theater, music, cooking, and city tours. She is passionate about city politics, voter registration, volleyball, and grassroots movement-building in the Chinese community. Recently moved to Toronto for marriage, she is collaborating with Elene Lam at Butterfly and the Migrant Sex Workers Project.

 Updated: March 2017