Sapna Pandya, MPH has served as Director since April 2010. Though originally from the DC area, she has been away for several years - most recently serving for five years in New York City as Director of Programs for the South Asian Health Initiative (SAHI) at the Center for Immigrant Health (CIH) of the New York University School of Medicine, helping South Asian and other Asian Pacific Islander (API) immigrants in New York City navigate barriers to health care, including language barriers.
Sapna's experiences in New York City deepened the passion that she has for health justice for priority populations (especially immigrant and LGBTQ communities) and led her to see the need for more advocacy in this area - a realization which motivated her move to the Nation's capital. She has created curricula and conducted training sessions on cultural competence and how to provide language services for diverse audiences around the country, including health providers, elected officials, and other stakeholders. Sapna is also active in local efforts for a true universal (single-payer) health care system that would serve everybody with affordable health care.
In addition to her work domestically on health access, Sapna remains connected to HIV/AIDS and sexual health work in India and Pakistan. She has a M.P.H. from the George Washington University and is an Alum of the CORO Immigrant Leadership Training Program. She is excited to be back in DC and living with her wife in Mt. Pleasant. Sapna speaks Spanish in addition to her native languages of Hindi/Urdu, Gujarati and Marathi.
Carol Tsoi, Lead Education Organizer carol(at)mlovdc.org
Originally from Brooklyn, NY, Carol Tsoi is a recent graduate of Williams College. She grew up experiencing language barriers firsthand as she routinely helped her limited/non-English proficient neighbors navigate public social programs by accompanying them to government agencies and translating application forms, drawing on her own fluency in Mandarin and Cantonese. She has had direct experiences working with youth through United East Athletic Association where she provided children in New York's Chinatown with access to field sports in crowded neighborhoods, and as a high school tutor working with Chinese English Language Learner students. Carol spent the past year serving as an Outreach Americorps VISTA with Many Languages One Voice, conducting Know Your Rights trainings around the Language Access Act.