Community

We are deeply grateful to the community contributors from across the Twin Cities metro.

Mia has a deep belief in the power of human creativity and the opportunities for connection and learning that exist when cultures and communities come together in collaboration and understanding. By recognizing the wisdom, knowledge, and creativity found within every community, we can begin to weave the complex history of our shared cultural heritage.

We wish to express deep gratitude to all our community collaborators, listed here in alphabetical order, who contributed their time, energy, and ideas and without whom this resource would not have been possible. 

 

headshot of Nancy Bader

Nancy Bader began teaching social studies in Northern California, but taught the majority of her career in District 834 in Stillwater, MN retiring, in 2016 after 25 years of teaching. Her interest in, and love for, Asian Art came from educational study travel experiences in China and Korea.

Nancy Bader

headshot of Andy Berg

Andy Berg is the technology facilitator at Anoka Middle School for the Arts.

Andy Berg

headshot of Keith Braafladt

Keith Braafladt’s work has focused on the intersection of art, technology, and science and how these can be integrated into learning environments to support creative self-expression, and social meaning making for youth and adults.

Keith Braafladt

Jolanda Dranchak is the Curriculum Integration Arts Coordinator at Anoka Middle School for the Arts.

Jolanda Dranchak

Cartoon image of Craig Farmer.

Farmer has been teaching art history at the high school level since 1992. He started his teaching career at the Field School of Washington, DC. Currently, Farmer teaches at the Perpich Center for Arts Education and has for twenty-three years. He holds a B.A. in art history and history from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and an M.A. in teaching from the University of St. Thomas.

Craig Farmer

headshot of Ann Flahavan

Anne Flahavan teaches second grade at Glacier Hills Elementary School of Arts and Science in Eagan, MN.

Anne Flahavan

Photo of Tori Hong standing in a city.

Tori Hong is an independent illustrator and public artist queering knowledge and culture. Hong interweaves stories from her queer, Hmong, and Korean ancestors as well as stories from the land she now calls home: Minneapolis, Minisota Makoce.

Tori Hong

Todd Hunter stands with his bike

Todd Hunter is a STEAM educator and Makerspace Facilitator in the Twin Cities.

Todd Hunter

headshot of Jesse Krohn

Jessie Krohn is an elementary school teacher in a dual language Spanish program in Minneapolis Public Schools. She lives in Minneapolis with her family who loves to visit Mia as much as possible.

Jessie Krohn

Headshot of Emily Livingston.

Emily Livingston is an English Language Instructor for adult refugees and immigrants at the International Institute of Minnesota, a refugee resettlement and social services agency in St. Paul.

Emily Livingston

Ka “Oskar” Ly is a Queer Hmoob (Hmong) French American artist and cultural producer. Hmoob ancestral knowledge manifests enduring creativity without a word for “art”. Ly draws on this to redefine Hmoob aesthetics, cultural innovation, and community futures.

Ka "Oskar" Ly

headshot of Aaron Monson.

Aaron Monson taught Visual Art for 11 years in both elementary and secondary settings. He is currently an Instructional Excellence Coordinator in Eden Prairie Schools. Monson served on the Arts of Asia Teacher Advisory Board.

Aaron Monson

Headshot of Sun Yung Shin

신 선 영 辛善英 Sun Yung Shin, born in Korea, lives in Minneapolis and co-directs Poetry Asylum with fellow poet Su Hwang. Shin’s most recent books include Unbearable Splendor (poems) and A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota (essays). She is a writer, educator, consultant, and healer.
 
Photo Credit: David Boyer

신 선 영 辛善英 Sun Yung Shin

headshot of Ahnali Tran

Ahnali Tran is a Mixed Vietnamese American artist residing in North Minneapolis. She will be attending the School of the Art Institute of Chicago for Visual and Critical Studies, where she will continue her studio practice and exploration of creating a just museum.

Ahnali Tran

Headshot of Saymoukda Duangphouxay Vongsay

Saymoukda Duangphouxay Vongsay is a Lao writer. Her plays have been presented by the Smithsonian APAC and Theater Mu. Awards include a Sally Award, Jerome Foundation, Knight Foundation, Playwrights’ Center, Loft Literary Center, Forecast Public Art, and elsewhere. She’s named a Mellon Foundation National Playwright in Residence at Theater Mu.

Saymoukda Duangphouxay Vongsay

Headshot of Chamindika Wanduragala

Chamindika Wanduragala is a Sri Lankan American puppet/stop motion artist ( www.chamindika.com ), DJ (DJ Chamun) and the founder of Monkeybear’s Harmolodic Workshop, which supports Native, Black and IPOC in developing creative and technical skills in contemporary puppetry.

Chamindika Wanduragala

headshot of Sydney Willcox

Sydney Willcox teaches high school pottery, painting and drawing in St. Paul. The pleasure of her job is learning from her students who come from all over the world.

Sydney Willcox

headshot of Boonmee Yang

Boonmee Yang is an elementary English language teacher in St. Paul. Nothing brings him more joy than when a language learner is able to see the fun side to acquiring a new language, such as telling jokes with really awful puns.

Boonmee Yang

headshot of Janette Yiran

Janette Yiran is the Dean of students and an English language teacher at St. Cloud Math & Science Academy and is also the organizer of the city’s annual Fred Yiran African Arts Day. She’s a mother of three and strongly believes in personal and academic development.

Janette Yiran

headshot of Marcus Young

Marcus Young 楊墨 makes art to expand the repertoire of human behavior and the expressivity of social forms, for the concert stage, museums, personal mindfulness practice, and the public realm. DYFIT.org

 
Photo Credit: Laichee Yang courtesy of Ananya Dance Theatre

Marcus Young