John C. Yang
President and Executive Director, Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC
John C. Yang is the President and Executive Director of Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC. He leads the organization’s efforts to fight for civil rights and empower Asian Americans to create a more just America for all through public policy advocacy, education, and litigation. His extensive legal background enables Advancing Justice | AAJC to address systemic policies, programs, and legislative attempts to discriminate against and marginalize Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and other minority communities. Because of his expertise, John is regularly asked to speak to media on issues affecting the Asian Pacific American community.
Mr. Yang served in the Obama Administration as Senior Advisor for Trade and Strategic Initiatives at the U.S. Department of Commerce, where he was the principal advisor to Secretary Penny Pritzker on issues related to Asia. Previously, Mr. Yang was a partner with a major Washington, D.C. law firm, and also worked in Shanghai, China as the legal director for the Asia-Pacific operations of a U.S. Fortune 200 company. Mr. Yang was the 2003-04 President of NAPABA.
Mr. Yang’s other leadership positions have included: Member, National Advisory Committee for Race, Ethnicity & Other Populations, U.S. Census Bureau (2017-2019); Co-Chair, National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (2019-present); Member, American Bar Association House of Delegates (2008-18; Minority Caucus Chair, 2014–16); General Counsel, D.C. Bar (2000-02); General Counsel, OCA National (2000-03). In 1998, Mr. Yang co-founded the Asian Pacific American Legal Resource Center, a nonprofit organization dedicated to addressing the direct service legal needs of Asian Pacific Americans in the D.C. metropolitan area.