Southeast Asia Resource Action Center Expands Leadership Team with New California Director

This post originally appeared on the SEARAC blog.

Washington, DCThe Board of Directors and staff of the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC) are pleased to announce that Ron Muriera has been named director of SEARAC’s California office, based in Sacramento. Muriera brings more than 20 years of experience as a passionate community advocate, seasoned organizational leader, skillful communicator, and strategic thinker.

“What excites us most about Ron is his extensive experience as a bridge builder who transcends racial and ethnic lines,” said Quyen Dinh, executive director, SEARAC. “We are impressed with his extensive track record as a strong ambassador for diverse communities of color, who trust in him and are proud to have him as an ally. As SEARAC grows, we seek to amplify the voice of Southeast Asian Americans in the policy making process by building bridges not only across Washington, DC, but also California and the greater Southeast Asian American population at large. Ron has much expertise in cultivating connections, and we are proud to add his talents to our growing team as we deepen our work serving SEAA communities and broaden our community’s presence.”

Muriera previously served as educational advisor as well as program coordinator of a federal TRIO Talent Search Program in San Francisco, where he provided pre-college services to 300 low-income middle school students in the SF Unified School District. For the next 10 years, Muriera worked as director of a federally funded TRIO Upward Bound program, which provided educational and academic services to first-generation, low-income high school students preparing them for college. During his term as Upward Bound director, Muriera achieved a 95 percent program success rate of his student participants graduating high school, enrolling into postsecondary institutions, and graduating from universities and colleges throughout the nation.

Muriera has also served as executive director of two nonprofits: Vision New America Inc, in San Jose, CA, which promotes the leadership development and civic participation of underrepresented ethnic groups; and Manilatown Heritage Foundation in San Francisco, a nonprofit organization that seeks to preserve and foster the cultural traditions of the city’s Filipino American community. In these roles, Muriera cultivated and built relationships with a wide array of partners, from government and elected representatives, to secondary and postsecondary institutions, to nonprofit agencies and community-based organizations.

Most recently, Muriera has worked as an independent consultant, providing a range of services in education, organization development, arts and culture, and grant writing. He has successfully assisted organizations and educational institutions in securing over $1.5 million dollars in funding from various sources.

“My strong interest in being a part of SEARAC’s team stems from my deep passion for social justice, working to ensure that members of Southeast Asian American communities have every opportunity to improve their quality of life,” Muriera said. “What I hope to bring to the role of SEARAC California Director is my extensive experience in building and supporting partnerships and coalitions, and my knowledge of policy and legislation in various areas that impact the SEAA communities and other ethnic communities. I plan to focus on strengthening SEARAC’s existing partnerships and networks, increasing awareness of SEARAC’s work in California, and expanding the organization’s efforts in educational access and equity for Southeast Asian and Asian Pacific American students.”

The eldest of four children, Muriera was born in Trenton, NJ, and grew up in Wahiawa, Oahu, and San Francisco. He lived in Oakland for more than 15 years, and has resided for the last 10 years in San José with his wife and two children. Muriera holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from New College of California in San Francisco, where he pursued interdisciplinary studies. He is a member of the Alliance of Boys and Men of Color, American Evaluation Association, serves on the Board of Trustees for the Filipino American National Historical Society, and the California History Center and Foundation, and is a commissioner on the San José Arts Commission. Muriera has been formally recognized for his leadership by a number of entities and elected officials, including the Philippine Consulate of San Francisco, Congressman Mike Honda, CA State Senator Ellen Corbett, and CA Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski.

 

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Diverse Elders Coalition.