The Staff

David K. Yoo, Director, UCLA Asian American Studies Center

David K. Yoo is Director of the Asian American Studies Center and Professor of Asian American Studies at UCLA.  A historian of the United States, Dr. Yoo is author of Growing Up Nisei (2000) in which he examines issues of race, generation, and culture among Japanese Americans in California in the early decades of the twentieth century.  Just released is his book from Stanford University Press entitled Contentious Spirits (2010) that focuses on the role of religion in Korean American history, 1903-1945.  In addition, Professor Yoo has co-edited and co-authored three books dealing with Asian American religions, including the influential anthology, New Spiritual Homes (1999). His  numerous journal articles and book chapters have appeared in venues like the American Quarterly and Amerasia Journal.  Prior to his arrival at UCLA, he taught at Claremont McKenna College and the Claremont Colleges, where he served as chair of the Department of History and the Intercollegiate Department of Asian American Studies.

Professor Yoo has been a Senior Fulbright Scholar (Korea) and a recipient of fellowships from the Rockefeller Foundation, the John Randolph Haynes and Dora Haynes Foundation, UCLA Institute of American Cultures, and the Huntington Library.  He has collaborated on various research projects funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts, the Social Science Research Council, and the Lilly Endowment.  Professor Yoo has served on many professional and community-based boards, including election to the council of the American Historical Association, Pacific Coast Branch, and chair of the managing board of the Asian Pacific American Religions Research Initiative.  In the realm of public history, Professor Yoo has been a consultant to local museums and historical societies and guided students in conducting oral history interviews.

A native of Los Angeles, Professor Yoo received his B.A. with honors from Claremont McKenna College, an M.Div. from Princeton Seminary, and the M.A., M.Phil., and Ph.D. from Yale University in American Studies and History.


Keith L. Camacho, Senior Editor

Keith Camacho is the Senior Editor of Amerasia Journal and an Associate Professor of Asian American Studies at UCLA.  Drawing from his interdisciplinary training in anthropology, history, and literature, he researches issues of colonization, decolonization, and militarization in Asia and the Pacific.  Along these lines, Professor Camacho published the award-winning monograph, Cultures of Commemoration: The Politics of War, Memory, and History in the Mariana Islands (2011) and co-edited the important volume on empire and gender, Militarized Currents: Toward a Decolonized Future in Asia and the Pacific (2010).  His shorter contributions appear in venues like Amerasia Journal, American Quarterly, The Contemporary Pacific, and The Journal of Pacific History, among others.

Professor Camacho has also held research appointments at the Australian National University, the University of Canterbury, and the University of Illinois.  Nationally and internationally recognized as an historian of war and conflict, he has garnered awards and grants from the American Council of Learned Societies, the Masayoshi Ohira  Memorial Foundation, the Northern Marianas Humanities Council, the UC Center for Racial Studies, and the UCLA Institute of American Cultures, to name a few.  Similarly, Professor Camacho enjoys working closely with student and community organizations, as evidenced in his involvement with Chamorro and Pacific Islander programs in Los Angeles, the Mariana Islands, and Oceania.  For these efforts, he received the Don T. Nakanishi Award for Outstanding Engaged Scholarship in Asian American Studies and Pacific Islander Studies at UCLA.

Professor Camacho is a proud alumnus of the University of Hawai’i at Manoa, having attained a PhD in history in 2005 and an MA in Pacific Islands Studies in 1998.

Arnold Pan, Associate Editor

Arnold Pan is Associate Editor of Amerasia Journal.  Arnold holds a Ph.D. in English from the University of California, Irvine, and attended Stanford University as an undergraduate.  In addition to Asian American Studies, Arnold’s areas of academic expertise are ethnic literature and U.S. modernism.  Arnold has published an essay entitled “Transnationalism at the Impasse of Race: Sui Sin Far and U.S. Imperialism” in Arizona Quarterly (2010), as well as book reviews in AmerasiaGenre, and Modern Fiction Studies.  He has an extensive background teaching Asian American Studies, American literature, and writing, having worked at UC Irvine and Loyola Marymount University.

Arnold writes about his experiences in academia at the blog he co-created, Post Academic.  He is also a music critic and a member of the editorial staff of PopMatters.

Mary Uyematsu Kao, Publications Coordinator

Mary Uyematsu Kao is the Publications Coordinator for the Asian American Studies Center Press, doing the graphic design and pre-press production of Amerasia Journal, AAPI Nexus Journal, and other AASCPress publications.  She received her BA in Pictorial Arts at UCLA in 1972, certificate in graphic design from California State University, Los Angeles in 1987, and her MA in Asian American Studies in 2007.  Her MA thesis is on Sansei women in the Asian American Movement in Los Angeles in the early 1970s.

She worked at AASC as an undergraduate workstudy in the early 1970s.  She was the graphic designer/production artist of Asian Americans:  The Movement and the Moment (UCLA AASCPress, 2001) and taught a class at UCLA on the Los Angeles Asian American Movement in 2008.  She co-curated, with Marji Lee of the AASC Reading Room, “Breaking Ground: Forty Years of UCLA Asian American Studies,” a retrospective exhibit on the development of Asian American Studies since 1969.  She guest-edited the first women’s issue since 1975, entitled “Where Women Tell Stories” (Amerasia 35.1, 2009).

Barbra Ramos, Marketing Manager

Barbra Ramos is the Marketing Manager for the Asian American Studies Center Press, working on expanding the reach and visibility of the Center and Press, as well as its many publications. She also handles the day-to-day Center Press distribution and sales operations.

She received a BA in Mass Communications from the University of California at Berkeley, with minors in Creative Writing and Public Policy, in 2006. She later earned a Masters degree in Media Psychology and Social Change from Fielding Graduate University.

Barbra formerly served as the Editor-in-Chief of Maganda Magazine and was a part of June Jordan’s Poetry for the People, both at UC Berkeley. She is also a proud alumna of VONA/Voices Workshop. She previously worked at the Japanese American National Museum and she helped plan and execute the first Asian American literary festival Page Turner by the Asian American Writers’ Workshop in New York. She currently serves as the Communications Director for the transnational feminist organization AF3IRM.

Russell Leong, Contributing Editor

Russell C. Leong is the senior editor at-large for international projects for the UCLA Asian American Studies Center.  Between 1977-2010, he served as the editor of Amerasia Journal, the flagship scholarly journal in the field of Asian American American Studies.  He edited the first anthologies on Asian American visual media film arts, and on Asian American sexuality.  He also directs the U.S./China Media Brief.

An award-winning writer, Leong has been honored with the PEN Josephine Miles Award for Literature for his book of poetry, The Country of Dreams and Dust.  His book Phoenix Eyes and Other Stories won the American Book Award and was selected by the Los Angeles Times as one of the 100 best books of fiction internationally for 2000.  He was one of fifty U.S. poets in the five-part PBS and book series, The United States of Poetry, and his work has been translated in Mainland China and Taiwan.  In Spring 2011, Leong taught at Hunter College, as the first co-recipient of the Dr. Thomas Tam Fellowship.

Leong heads the new Literary E-Book Series at UCLA, which will publish new and neglected Asian and Pacific American writers.

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