A truly proud achievement by an amazingly talented artist, writer and theater personality Kayhan Irani She has been selected as one of the 10 Champions of Change for Asian American and Pacific Islander Art & Storytelling and will be going to the White House !!!
Kayhan Irani is also a FEZANA Award winner having won the Dinshaw Framroze Joshi Excellence in Performing Arts, Painting or Literature Award in 2012 on the occasion of the 15th North American Zoroastrian Congress in Houston
On Wednesday, the White House will recognize ten individuals from across the country as “White House Champions of Change for Asian American and Pacific Islander Art and Storytelling.”
May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. To celebrate, the White House and White House Initiative on AAPIs are honoring artists and advocates who have used unique channels and diverse platforms to tell powerful stories, increase awareness around key AAPI issues, and encourage diversity and inclusion in all sectors of society. These ten individuals were selected for their leadership and tireless work to raise the visibility of diverse AAPI experiences and create dialogue around issues the community faces.
The Champions of Change event will feature remarks by Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff to the First Lady Tina Tchen, National Endowment for the Arts Chairman Jane Chu, and White House Initiative on AAPIs Executive Director Doua Thor. There will also be panel discussions with the awardees, moderated by myself and Jeanny Kim, Acting Director of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center.
The event will be live streamed on the White House website at www.whitehouse.gov/live on Wednesday, May 4, at 2:00 PM ET. Follow the conversation at #WHChamps.
Kayhan Irani is an Emmy Award-winning writer, a socially engaged artist, and a Theater of the Oppressed trainer and facilitator. She designs and directs socially engaged arts projects for community-based organizations, government agencies, and international NGOs. She facilitates workshops and trainings nationally and internationally in Afghanistan, India, and Iraq. Her published work includes Telling Stories to Change the World: Global Voices on the Power of Narrative to Build Community Make Social Justice Claims (2008).
In 2010, Kayhan won a New York Emmy Award in best writing for We Are New York, a nine-episode broadcast TV drama created with the NYC Mayor’s Office of Adult Education and used as an English language and civic engagement tool for immigrant New Yorkers. She is currently producing Documented cIRCA 86: Immigration Reform Turns Thirty, a multimedia oral history and public engagement project that celebrates the lives and accomplishments of immigrants who found a pathway to legalization through the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986.