OCEANIA CONNECTS FOUNDERS

"K" Parker

I'm a 'hapa-haole' of Kanaka Maoli, Japanese and Polish ethnicity, student-parent attending UC Berkeley, and community organizer working with/for Pacific Islanders of Oceania within the Asian Pacific American Student Development center at UC Berkeley. My praxis is rooted in weaving together common cosmological traits that run through Oceania with my growing knowledge in sociocultural anthropology and education. As such, I'm deeply dedicated to educating, creating and supporting programs that challenge both internal and external narratives of Pacific Islander ontology. I also have a penchant for big words, laughter, good food, and anything flavored with li hing mui.

Thomas Mangloña II

I am a native Chamorro born and raised on the island of Rota, Northern Mariana Islands. I am a Gates Millennium Scholar and undergraduate at UC Berkeley studying Media and Journalism.  I started writing news reports for my island on my blog when I was in middle school and my passion for journalism has since flourished, leading me to work for several print publications and the regional Pacific News Center as an on-camera correspondent covering government, education, and community.  I am also the executive director of Berkeley’s online television station and a news intern at ABC7 News in SF. I am passionate about diversity and representation in the media.

Betsy Rohney

I’m a mixed-race/'afakasi person of Tongan descent born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. I’m a UC Berkeley alum with experience researching language preservation in indigenous communities, particularly the Aotearoa-New Zealand Māori language. My research has been funded by the UCB Center for Race and Gender and I’ve spent time in New Zealand speaking with Māori people about how language shapes their identity. Much of my work revolves around intersectionality and decolonization of Pacific Islander identity. I’m hoping to start this channel to spotlight what it means to be "Pacific Islander".