Executive Committee

The FSU AAA Executive Committee is comprised of a five-member Executive Board, a five-member Board of Governors, and 3 ex-officio members. All members of the Executive Committee reside all of the regions of the United States from Washington state to Washington, D.C. The backgrounds of the Executive Committee span 15 years of experience at FSU and various industries like medicine, technology, public policy, higher education and the arts.

Executive Board

Zach HengZach Heng, President and Co-Founder

Zach graduated in 2007 with a BS in Information Technology. During his time at FSU, he served as both the Treasurer (’05-’06) and Director (’06-’07) of the [then] Asian Student Union and spear-headed the branding transition to what is now the Asian American Student Union (AASU) and was inducted into Seminole Torchbearers, Garnet & Gold Key and Omicron Delta Kappa. Zach currently works for Booz Allen Hamilton as a Technology Consulting Manager in the Washington, DC area. He has more than 9 years of experience in the Information Technology & Management industry having previously worked for other consulting giants like Deloitte and Accenture. Outside of work, in addition to supporting other university initiatives, he is a board member for the Greater Washington Chapter of Ascend Leadership, a national Pan-Asian professional leadership organization. His other interests include traveling, eating, karaoke and mentoring.

Alexa AquinoAlexa Aquino, Vice President

Alexa graduated in December ‘10 with a BA in English Literature. In the Fall ’07, she joined the Filipino Student Association (FSA) and Rhythmic Soul, a hip-hop based dance troupe. Soon after in Spring ‘08, she became a sister of the of alpha Kappa Delta Phi International Sorority, Inc (aKDPhi) while holding various leadership roles throughout her time at FSU. She became AASU’s Co-Public Relations Chair in Fall ‘09 during which she was recognized as “Executive Board Member of the Year”. Near the end of her time at FSU, she was a founding member of the hip-hop based dance troupe, the “Renagadez”, which competed at UF-FSA’s annual Def Talent Jam in Gainesville. Alexa currently resides in Orlando, FL.

Maryann MinaMaryann Mina, Treasurer

Maryann graduated in 2013 with a BS in Business Marketing and Chinese Language and Culture. During her time at FSU, she served on the AASU Executive Board as the Internal Ambassador from 2011­-2012 and then as Director from 2012­2013. Maryann currently resides in Jacksonville, Florida and her hobbies include singing karaoke, playing mahjong and traveling.



Andy SilhanekAndy Silhanek, Secretary

Andy graduated in 2012 with a BS in International Affairs. During his time at FSU, he has served numerous leadership positions, such as Public Relations chair for the Filipino Student Association (FSA) and the Asian American Student Union (AASU). In 2011, he was appointed to AASU Director, while still volunteering his time to perform traditional Filipino dances with Indak as well as the Chinese lion dance troupe for various culture events and celebrations. Currently, Andy works as a production manager and trade show representative for PLW Modelworks, LLC in Melbourne, FL, creating and selling 3D virtual models made from aerial photography. These models are used by Hollywood studios, flight simulators, urban and regional developers, tactical mission planners, etc. In his spare time, Andy teaches Filipino dances and choreographs cotillion waltzes for debuts within the Filipino community in Melbourne.

Anisha SinghAnisha Singh, At-Large Liaison

Anisha received her B.A. with honors in Political Science and Communication Studies from FSU’s College of Communication & Information in 2009. During her time at FSU she was actively involved in the Senate and Office of Legislative Affairs components of the Student Government Association. She later received her J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law. Anisha currently resides in Washington, DC and is the Campaign Manager for Legal Progress at the Center for American Progress where she is shaping the conversation around our nation’s judicial process by managing unprecedented grassroots organizing efforts across the country to educate Americans on the need to fill judicial vacancies so that historic backlogs can be remedied and civil and criminal cases may be heard in a timely manner. She has garnered significant national media attention, from prominent local papers like Dallas Morning News and Des Moines Register, to national outlets such as MSNBC and the Houston Chronicle, for this important but too rarely discussed issue, creating a voice for millions of Americans unable to access justice. Anisha was recently named as one of Forbes magazine’s 2016 “30 under 30” for Law & Policy. Her 9 years of legal experience includes immigration, employment discrimination, labor, civil rights, international criminal justice, and trial advocacy. When she’s not kicking butt in the world of law, she enjoys working out, dancing, baking and cheering on the Noles!


Vu ThaiVu Thai, Public Relations Coordinator & Co-Founder

Vu graduated with a BFA in Graphic Design from the College of Visual Arts, Theatre and Dance. Currently, he is a Senior Graphic Designer for Aramark at The Florida State University in Tallahassee, FL. Vu also volunteers in the nonprofit sector as the (now outgoing) Executive Secretary and Director of Public Relations for the Union of North American Vietnamese Student Associations (UNAVSA), an international Vietnamese youth leadership organization. His interests include traveling, community work, and singing karaoke.



Monica PattersonMonica Patterson, Events Coordinator

Monica graduated from FSU with a BA in Theatre in 2005 and earned her BS in Recreation and Leisure Services Management in 2009. She currently works as an Operations Manager for Residence Inn by Marriott. During her time at FSU, she held various leadership positions including President of the Filipino Student Association, Assistant Director of the (then) Asian Student Union, Vice President Internal for alpha Kappa Delta Phi Sorority, Inc. and President of the Multicultural Greek Council. Monica currently resides in Tallahassee, Florida with her husband and daughter.


Ex-Officio Members

Samantha Jo MancerateSamantha Jo Moncerate, Asian American Student Union (AASU) Director

Samantha Jo Moncerate is a senior majoring in Biochemistry with a minor in Mathematics. Before ascending to the position of AASU Director, she served on the Executive Board of the Filipino Student Association for two years, first as Secretary and then as Vice President. Being in AASU has been an integral part of her college experience, not only through the tight-knit community it has provided her with, but also through the awareness it has brought her concerning APIA issues and her own Filipino culture. When not preoccupied with AASU and school, Sammie’s interests include listening to musical theatre soundtracks, cooking, and spending time with family and close friends.


Board of Governors

Theo AquinoDr. Theodore Aquino graduated from FSU in 2005 with a BS in biochemistry and a minor in physics. While at FSU, he was actively involved with Relay For Life and the Filipino Student Association. He also volunteered at Tallahassee Memorial Hospital, worked as an on-campus resident assistant and was named an American Cancer Society undergraduate research fellow. In 2009, he graduated from medical school and went on to practice medicine in the US Navy for 5 years. During that time, he completed multiple overseas deployments and received an MBA degree. After military service, Dr. Aquino finished occupational medicine residency and public health training at the University of South Florida. He has published papers in medical journals, he is the recipient of multiple professional awards and has spoken at numerous conferences. Dr. Aquino currently practices occupational medicine in Minneapolis-St. Paul.

Riz DaganiDr. Rizción Dagani graduated from Florida State University in ‘00 (BS, BA), ’01 (BS) and ’03 (BS). While at FSU, she served as the Director of the Asian Student Union (‘02-’03), President of the Filipino Student Association (‘99-’01) and VP-Internal of FSU alpha Kappa Delta Phi (aKDPhi) (‘02-’03). In 1999, along with Maves Rañola, she was the co-founder of both the Filipino Student Association and P.A.A.W.S. Asian-American Women’s Organization, the precursor to FSU aKDPhi. Riz was also recognized as the Multicultural Greek Council’s Woman of the Year for ‘02-’03.

Upon graduation, Dr. Dagani continued her involvement serving on the Boards of the aKDPhi National Alumnae Assoc. (‘05-’11), the FSU aKDPhi Alumnae Assoc. (‘04-present) and the Miami Seminole Club (‘13-’14). She also received an MBA from UCF (‘05) and a DPM from Barry University School of Podiatric Medicine (‘14). Riz is currently a Resident Physician in Podiatric Medicine and Surgery.

Gillian LieGillian Lie was born in Paramaribo, Suriname (South America) and raised in Miami, FL after spending some time in Kowloon Peninsula, Hong Kong. She graduated from FSU in 2004 with an MS in Learning Disabilities and Emotional Disturbances. During her time at FSU, she held various leadership roles on the executive board of the (then) Asian Student Union and the executive board of alpha Kappa Delta Phi Sorority, Inc. Upon graduation, she continued in the field of education in various capacities. Gillian currently teaches at a state university in Colorado for a Master’s program in Education in addition to leading the Special Education program at the university.


Hemal PatelHemal Patel graduated from FSU in 2008 with a double major in Finance and Marketing. He currently works at KB Studio, a web design and internet marketing company he started in 2008 which aims to help small businesses around the country establish their brand online and grow their sales. His interests include reading, traveling and watching movies.





Stephanie SameraStephanie Samera graduated with a BS in Anthropology in 2005 and completed a MSEd in Leadership in Museum Education at the Bank Street College of Education in NYC in 2014. During her time at FSU, Stephanie held various leadership roles including Assistant Director of ASU, President of alpha Kappa Delta Phi Sorority, Inc and in the SGA Student Senate as the Deputy Secretary of Health Concerns. Stephanie has worked at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in NYC as Manager of Group Services working with Community, Access and School Programs. Most recently, she oversaw the docent program at the Columbus Museum of Art in Ohio before reaching her current role as Senior Museum Educator at the Seattle Art Museum.



Interns

Rosalyn ChenTexas-born, Rosalyn Chen, is a sophomore political science major with aspirations to work for an Asian American advocacy group in the future. In addition to her role with FSU AAA, she currently serves as the Secretary for the Chinese Language and Culture Association (CLCA). When she’s not hitting the books, you may find her volunteering, playing the piano and traveling.





Thomas JengCalifornia native, Thomas Jeng, is a senior who is planning to graduate at the end of Fall 2015. He is a Chinese and Japanese double-major certified in N3 Japanese. In addition to his role with FSU AAA, he continues to support the Japanese Language and Culture Association (JLCA) where he previously held the position of Historian during the 2014-2015 school year. When he’s not fine tuning his linguistics, he enjoys cooking, anime and learning other languages.