Asian in Perspective
MEET THE PRESENTERS
Hanna PK is a 2019 International Blues Challenge Semi-Finalist. A solid pianist, soulful vocalist, and vibrant performer, Hanna combines a wide variety of the blues & swing, old school folk and boogie-woogie with her own contemporary realness—whether performing story-telling originals, breathing new life into songs that may be 100 years old, or anything in between.
Smriti Jacob is co-founder and managing editor of the Rochester Beacon, a digital nonprofit publication and community forum in Rochester. An award-winning reporter and editor, Smriti worked at the Rochester Business Journal for nearly 16 years. She owns Bold Letter Marketing, a content marketing business, working with national clients like Hewlett-Packard, Sitecore and Carestream Health, and is an adjunct professor in the Department of English at St. John Fisher College.
Frank Keophetlasy is a Laotian American Monroe County legislator born and raised in the 28th Legislative District in Northwest Rochester. A product of the public school system, Frank attended Elementary School 30, Wilson Magnet High School, Monroe Community College, and finished his bachelors at SUNY Brockport. Through all his successes, he has remained a proud resident of Northwest Rochester because of his love and commitment to the community that shaped him.
Samiha Islam is a member of the Levine Center to End Hate Steering Committee and a Presidential Scholar studying political science at the State University of New York at Buffalo. In 2018, she organized the From Strangers to Neighbors Festival, a project highlighting the values that refugees and immigrants bring to American society and culture. She is a former intern at the M.K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence and has been featured in the Rochester Museum and Science Center's Changemakers: Rochester Women Who Changed the World exhibit.