Wisconsin’s 40 Most Influential Asian American Leaders, Part 4


    This is the fourth of a five-part series. Part One is here, Part Two is here and Part Three is here.

    Lorna Young is a cofounder and executive committee member of the AAPI Coalition of Wisconsin, an organization that grew in response to hate crimes and hate speech against Asian Americans in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic. She has also been a volunteer and board member for the Organization of Chinese Americans -Wisconsin chapter, helping organize the Chinese New Year Gala and Dragon Boat Festival. Professionally, she has worked for 25 years as a market research consultant to the medical imaging industry for IMV Medical Information Division, where she works with all the top clients in the imaging industry, including GE, Philips, Siemens, and Canon. She spent the previous 15 years on the CT Scanner Marketing team for GE Healthcare. She earned a BA in History from the University of Rochester, in Rochester NY, and an MBA from Cornell University, in Ithaca, NY.

    Rob Kim has been chief financial officer at Green Bay Packaging since 2017. He joined the firm after six years in vice president and director roles at Ball Corporation and three and a half years at Belden Corporation in Indianapolis. He serves on the board of directors of the Greater Green Bay Community Foundation and the corporate board of Curative Connections. He holds a bachelor’s degree in accountancy from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and an MBA from the Olin Business School at Washington University in St. Louis.

    Angie Lee has recently joined Rawhide Youth Services as an educator, returning to education after a stint as a client relations specialist, brand storyteller and DEI consultant with a creative services agency. She received a Masters in Education in 2005 and has served diverse school populations, including Booker T. Washington Elementary, a dual language school in Champaign, Illinois. Her teaching experience includes serving as a bilingual cross categorical teacher, bilingual literacy interventionist, and most recently a cross categorical teacher at Horace Mann Middle School in Neenah. Additionally, she has led two Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committees for the City of Oshkosh and the New North Community Workstream, and was appointed to the Oshkosh School Board in 2022.

    Kate Hill is co-owner of Dakonte Product Group, which makes standard and custom size vinyl document holders and restaurant menu covers. She and husband Don bought the business lines from Sussex-based BMG Group in 2016. Several of that business line’s employees were members of Milwaukee’s Hmong community; Hill, who was born in Taiwan, spent 10 years as president of the board of the Hmong Chamber of Commerce. With that in mind, the Hills moved the business from Sussex to the Havenwoods neighborhood on Milwaukee’s northwest side, where many of the city’s Hmong community lives. Before buying the business, Hill spent nearly 20 years running Heartland Information Research Inc., providing economic research to private, nonprofit and government clients, including the Wisconsin Department of Commerce, the SBA and others. 

    Sarah Wong is an intellectual property attorney and partner at Boyle Fredrickson. A Milwaukee native, she’s spent most of her life involved in the local Asian American community (Organization of Chinese Americans – Wisconsin, Asian American Senior Center) as a volunteer and leader, and co-founded Young Asian Professionals of Milwaukee (YappieMKE) in 2012 as a way to give back and stay connected to the AAPI community. Sarah is also a Big Brothers Big Sisters mentor and TEMPO Emerging Women Leaders member.

    Wenbin Yuan is chief operating officer at Brainsymphonics, a Wisconsin-based business whose mission is to commercialize new imaging technologies for early detection and diagnosis of Alzheimer’s Disease, enabling timely and cost-effective intervention. A geologist by trade, he co-founded Dakota Intertek, an environmental construction contractor, in 1994. He sold that business in 2020. He is also vice president of the Wisconsin Chinese Chamber of Commerce and volunteers with International Rotary, Milwaukee Chinese Times, Modern Milwaukee Chinese School, National Association of Minority Contractors and Milwaukee Chinese Community Center.

    Dr. Ruttanatip (Dang) Chonwerawong is a senior consultant at Arredondo Advisory Group, a DEI consultancy. She focuses on access to higher education for students from low-income families, first generation college students, and–most importantly–students who are historically underrepresented in American higher education settings. She has more than 25 years of experience as a higher education practitioner and senior administrator, much of it at the University of Wisconsin, where she led TRIO Student Support Services for 14 years before becoming an Assistant Dean for Student Diversity Programs in the School of Education. In that role, she oversaw multiple programs ranging from pre-college to graduate levels. She previously served as Associate Vice President for Student Academic Support Services at California State San Marcos, Special Assistant to the President of the University of Wisconsin System, Dean for Student Development at Fielding Graduate University in Santa Barbara, and Associate Vice President for Student Success at California State University, Dominguez Hills. She received her undergraduate degree in Teaching English as a Second Language from Chiang Mai University, Thailand; Master’s degree in Adult Education from University of Wisconsin Platteville; Master’s degree in Educational Administration; and a PhD in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis from UW-Madison.

    Dr. Ajay Sahajpal is a transplant surgeon and executive medical director of the Global and Executive Health Program at Advocate Aurora Health in Milwaukee. He is also a member of Aurora’s System Hospital Board, the only clinical physician on the board overseeing 16 hospitals, as well as the board of the Advocate Aurora Research Institute. An alum of the Mayo Clinic fellowship program, he was the first surgeon in the U.S. to utilize a technique known as “En Bloc” or “together, at the same time” in which the kidney and liver are stitched together and then transplanted into the patient with a singular incision to the patient’s upper abdomen. “The Economist” has recognized Sahajpal as a global Hepatitis C Change Maker.

    Part Five coming tomorrow!