APALA LogoAsian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA) is a caucus within SEIU and the AFL-CIO. It is the first and only national organization of Asian/Pacific Island American union members.

APALA continues a tradition dating from the mid-1800’s of workers fighting for justice in the sugar plantations of Hawaii, the factories of Alaska, and the railroad and agricultural camps of the western United States.

In the spirit of the holidays, many of our members are leading donation drives, proving that we mean it when we say: “Community First!”

APALA Coat Drive
Our APALA Caucus Members in Fresno donated 30 jackets to disadvantaged children at Greenberg Elementary School. Congratulate them on Facebook!

Read SEIU Executive Vice President Luisa Blue’s op-ed in the Asian Journal: “Investing in democracy builds America”
“Many of our parents fled repressive regimes for America to be able to freely voice their opinions and pursue their dreams. At a time when authoritarian candidates are getting elected here and abroad, we must remember we came to this country because America allows the people a voice in how they are governed.”
Continue reading here.

Meetings and Events

Fresno Asian Fest 2017

Click here to view flyer: Asian Fest Flyer 2017 (PDF)

Saturday, April 29
9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Fresno City College, 1101 E. University, Fresno

AsianFest celebrates Asian American culture and showcases the  talents of community performers, martial artists, and cultural organizations. Visitors will experience culture at its best through performances, exhibits, crafts, and of course amazing food!  The event features a variety of cultural villages, martial artists, vendors, and an Anime car show.  The children’s craft area offers families the opportunity to learn the Japanese art of Origami and other cultural crafts.

2017-18 Scholarship Program and Application

Applications are available starting February 24, 2017.  Applications with essay must be received in the union office no later than 5:30 p.m. on Friday, April 14, 2017: SEIU Local 521, 5228 E. Pine Ave., Fresno, CA 93727

Click here to view or print program and application: APALA Scholarship Program and Application 2017 (PDF)

APALA and unions help working families fulfill their dreams. These scholarships will help assist SEIU 521/APALA members and/or their children in pursuing their educational goals. APALA is hoping that the winners of the scholarships will be involved in the labor movement and partake in some classes in the labor study programs that the colleges have to offer.  Our mission is to improve lives in our community.

Winners will be announced at our annual APALA Caucus Heritage event on Saturday, May 13.

General Eligibility Criteria

  • APALA Scholarships are open to SEIU 521 APALA Caucus members and/or their children.
  • Must be a member in good standing.
  • GPA of 2.50 and above.
  • Should be of Asian decent.
  • Be willing to help promote social and economic justice.
  • Must attend an accredited university, community college, trade or technical school.

Scholarships will be awarded without regard to age, sex, religion, sexual orientation, or disability of any person.  Scholarship award is limited to one household.

Due with the submittal of the application is a 500 word autobiography essay containing:

  • A brief description of yourself and your future goals.
  • Why you want to further your education by attending an accredited university, community college, trade or technical school.
  • Your goals entering into college and your goals after college.
  • What is your take on the labor movement and social and economic justice?

APALA Fresno’s 9th Annual Asian & Pacific Islander Heritage Celebration – This is a FREE event for union members and their families

Click here to view flyer: APALA 9th Heritage Celebration Flyer 5.13.17 (PDF)

Date: Saturday, May 13
Time: 11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Location: Union Office, 5228 E. Pine Ave., Fresno

There will be cultural foods, activities, raffles, music, performers and more!  Raffle tickets are available for purchase at the APALA Celebration.  $1 per ticket or $5 for six.

Please RSVP your attendance at (559) 447-2579 or to: liane.mazzella@seiu521.org

Santa Clara & San Mateo APALA Meeting (Region 1)
The Region 1 APALA Caucus meets the 3rd Saturday of every month, noon-2 p.m.
2017 Meetings: Jan. 21 | Feb. 18 | Mar. 18 | Apr. 15 | May 20 | June 17 | July 15 | Aug. 19 | Sept. 16 | Oct. 21 | Nov. 18 | Dec. 16
SEIU 521 San Jose office, 2302 Zanker Road
Meeting sometimes moves to SEIU 521 Redwood City Office, 558 Brewster Ave., Suite 100
RSVP: (408) 678-3300 or to SEIU521.Receptionist@seiu521.org

Fresno APALA Meeting (Region 4)
The Fresno APALA Caucus meets the 3rd Tuesday of every month, 5:30-8 p.m.
SEIU 521 Fresno office, 5228 E. Pine Ave., Fresno (Map)
RSVP: (559) 447-2579 or to liane.mazzella@seiu521.org
2017 Meetings: Apr. 18 | May 16 | June 20 | July 18 | Aug. 15 | Sept. 19 | Oct. 17 | Nov. 21 | Dec. 19

Become a member

Join online today or contact Denise Tan-Agatep, SEIU 521 APALA President: denisektan@gmail.com

Contact Information

Fresno County – cx1999@comcast.net
Monterey County – laguilar.apala@gmail.com
Santa Clara County – mll_28@yahoo.com
San Mateo County – myrnabravo@sbcglobal.net

SEIU 521 Caucus APALA Officers

Karen Nakatani, APALA Caucus Delegate to SEIU 521 Executive Board


  • Chair: Bella Barela
  • Co-Chair:  Nancy Her
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Cecilia Tatum

Santa Clara, San Mateo Counties:

  • Chair: My Nguyen
  • Co-Chair: Carmella Disopa
  • Secretary: Karen Nakatani
  • Treasurer: Vinay Tatapudy
  • SEJ Coordinator: Heidi Pham
    • SEJ back up:  Myrna Bravo
  • Executive Board delegate: Karen Nakatani

APALA Mission Statement

The APALA Caucus will strive to promote a greater understanding and respect in the Asian Pacific Islander cultures within the diverse membership of SEIU Local 521.

APALA Bylaws Approved 12-7-13

APALA serves as the bridge between the labor movement and social economic justice – be part of that bridge.

For more information about APALA, please visit www.apalanet.org.

Meeting Minutes & Reports

APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 4.18.17 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 3.21.17 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 2.21.17 (PDF)
APALA Casino Fundraiser Jackson Rancheria 2.18.17 (PDF)

APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 12.12.16 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 11.15.16 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 11.7.16 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 10.18.16 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 9.13.16 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 8.16.16 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 7.19.16 (PDF)
APALA Scholarship Program 2016 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 5.17.16 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 4.19.16 (PDF)
APALA Caucus Meeting Minutes 3.15.16
No meeting in Fresno for Feb. 2016
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 1.19.16


Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 12.1.15 (PDF)
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 11.5.15
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 10.20.15
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 9.16.15
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 8.18.15
Santa Clara & San Mateo APALA Meeting Minutes July 18 2015
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 6.16.15 (PDF)
Santa Clara & San Mateo APALA Meeting Minutes June 20 2015
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 5.26.15
Santa Clara & San Mateo APALA Meeting Minutes 5.23.2015 (PDF)
Santa Clara & San Mateo APALA Meeting Minutes 4.18.15
Santa Clara & San Mateo APALA Meeting Minutes 3.21.15
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 3.17.15 (PDF)
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 2.17.15 (PDF)
Fresno APALA Meeting Minutes 1.20.15 (PDF)


2015 APALA Convention Was a Success

APALA Conference 2015“For the first time, labor, through APALA, housed a powerful convening of workers, students and community members who spoke the same language of love, passion and drive to move our movement forward.”
– Johanna Puno Hester, APALA National President

2015 Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Month

During Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, we celebrate the accomplishments of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders, and we reflect on the many ways they have enriched our Nation.

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