Joseph Seia (Sāmoan,Tongan) was born in Los Angeles, grew up on Tutuila and Upolu islands with his ‘āiga in Sāmoa and eventually emigrated to Duwamish/Coast Salish Territory with his father Aitulagi Iosefa and his siblings in 1994. He has 15 years of experience in direct service & youth development work, community organizing, nonprofit leadership and administration. Joseph champions undoing institutional racism work. He is committed to reducing and ending the impacts of systemic racism on the lives of Indigenous, Black and Brown communities, through coalition building, centering anti-racism organizing,creating inter-generational leadership development opportunities and working with community to co-design the realities we live in. Joseph is Fa’afafine - he is a fierce advocate for queer and trans communities of color. When off the clock, you can find him either at the local Karaoke spot, cooking for friends and family or traveling in the Pacific to further his cultural connections and commitment to his Oceanian homelands.
Jiji Jally (Marshallese) is an advocate for health, justice and well-being for her Marshallese community in Washington State. She advocates for the vision that every child, adult and elder in her community – and all our communities – has the access to health care and full opportunities to live safe, healthy, long lives. She lives in Tumwater, Washington near the capitol in Olympia. She works professionally as a Marshallese interpreter and an Outreach Worker for the Washington Health Benefits Exchange. In a volunteer capacity she serves as Co-Chair of the Pacific Islander Health Board of Washington and a member the Children’s Alliance Public Policy Council. Jiji has been a volunteer advocate for more than 13 years, working alongside her community and community-based organizations in Washington. She played a key role in the creation and the passage of the COFA Islander Health Care Program in Washington State and other state legislative campaigns to improve health equity and well-being.
Melissa Ponder (Korean/White) is a community involved professional photographer based in South King County. For the past 15 years, she has provided a variety of visual content for communications purposes, as well as event, documentary, portrait photography services primarily for nonprofit organizations like White Center Community Development Association, Longhouse Media, Highline Public Schools, HealthPoint, United Territories of Pacific Islands Association, Montana Two SpIrit Society, Seattle Indian Health Board, Seattle Public Library, Highline College, as well as for individuals, families, and businesses. As a photographer, family member, ally, colleague, and friend, Melissa has been involved with several Native Hawaiian Hālau Hula, Kīkaha O Ke Kai Outrigger Canoe Club, the newly formed Pacific Islander Community Association, and U.T.O.P.I.A. Seattle (United Territories of Pacific Islanders Alliance) a Queer and Trans Pacific Islander (QTPI) Organization, UPRISE Pacific Islander Education Summit, Samoan Arts & Academics Competition, and other pan Pasifika efforts.