The month of May is Asian and Pacific Islander American Heritage Month, it is a time to recognize the contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islander Americans to the history, culture, and achievements of the United States. District Attorney Chesa Boudin would like to honor and recognize a few members in our Asian Pacific Islander community who have made an impact and difference.
Sasanna Yee, Founder, Peace in the Southeast
In honor and recognition of our Community Hero, Sasanna Yee, for her continuous commitment to improve public safety in our community. Born and raised in Visitacion Valley, Sasanna launched Communities As One to transform “hurt into love” across communities. Motivated by the violent assault on her 88-year-old grandmother, Sasanna has been inspirational in creating racial unity and healing spaces in Visitacion Valley. She combines her ten plus years of social justice experience with her knowledge of healing pain and trauma to mobilize people towards a different response to harm. Sasanna is dedicated to transformative justice, expanding kinship, and restoring peace. She is engaged in healing circles and roundtable dialogues to strengthen African American and Asian American relationships. As a yoga teacher, Sasanna supports the health and wellbeing of at-risk youths, seniors, and immigrants. She also launched the “Asians Belong” movement to humanize and cultivate pride, belonging and recognition of Asians in society. She asks, “What can pain teach us and how can we channel it for positive change?”
Please join District Attorney Chesa Boudin in congratulating Sasanna Yee as our Community Hero!!
Community-Based Organization Champion
Community Youth Center
In honor and recognition to the Community Youth Center for their incredible contributions to our community. Celebrating its 50th year, CYC serves over 8,000 youth annually and is one of only a few agencies in San Francisco addressing the needs of a diverse population of low-income, high-need, and at-risk Asian Pacific American, Latino, and African American youth.
CYC’s services include academic/college counseling, job placement/employment training, substance use disorder and violence prevention education, crisis intervention and mediation, leadership development, community engagement, and technology training.
Serving as a conduit for the Asian Pacific American community in the Bayview district, CYC recently assisted an elderly man who was assaulted while collecting cans to recycle. A video of the incident was captured and went viral on social media causing many in the community to express their desire to support the victim and his family. Through the guidance of CYC, a GoFundMe account was established for the victim to assist the family financially with rent, utilities, and other expenses. The campaign collected over $70,000 for the family.
“CYC would like to thank the San Francisco District Attorney’s office for honoring our agency with the Community Base Organization Champion Award, in recognition of our 50 years of service to the San Francisco community. Serving the community has always been the hallmark of CYC and one which drives the work that we do to improve the lives of those who live here. We look forward to seeing what change we can bring in the next 50 years.”
Please join District Attorney Chesa Boudin in congratulating the Community Youth Center as our Community Based Organization Champion!
SFDA Justice Superstar
In honor and recognition of our very own Jackson Gee. Jackson serves as the San Francisco District Attorney’s Director of Neighborhood Courts, an innovative program designed to keep adults facing prosecution for low-level offenses from entering the criminal justice system. In this model, Jackson works closely with stakeholders and non-profit partners to implement community–based, restorative safety strategies and assist justice involved individuals to move forward and out of the traditional criminal justice system. Through creative restorative practices, justice system resources are saved and reinvested in the prevention and strengthening of communities.
Under Jackson’s guidance, Neighborhood Courts was the recipient of the 2015 Innovation in Criminal Justice Award by the United States Department of Justice/Bureau of Justice Assistance, Association of Prosecuting Attorneys and Center for Court Innovation. The model has been replicated in Los Angeles and Yolo County, California and has garnered interest from jurisdictions across the country. Neighborhood Courts has become a paradigm of innovation in advancing public safety through the sustainment of healthy, thriving neighborhoods.
Also, serving as a liaison to the Asian American communities, Jackson’s passion lies in working with community leaders and organizations to identify emerging health and safety issues and explore practical solutions. He also organizes the District Attorney’s Chinatown Community Resource Fair each year in central Chinatown. As an underserved community, thousands of community members and their families, many of whom face social isolation because of language barriers, have been uplifted by having access to an array of culturally and linguistically appropriate health and safety resources.
“I am so humbled by this recognition. There are so many hard working individuals in the office who deserve it more. I share it with them. Thank you to District Attorney Boudin and I look forward to continuing my role in serving our communities and facilitating the DA’s thoughtful approach to transformative justice.”
Please join District Attorney Chesa Boudin in congratulating Jackson Gee as our District Attorney’s office Superstar!