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Contact Information for Symposium Co Chairs


Saengmany Ratsabout, Immigration History and Research Center, ratsa001 [at]


Saymoukda Vongsay, Asian American Studies, vong0018 [at]



Contact Information for Summit Co Chairs


Bryan Thao Worra, Lao American Writer's Summit, thaoworra [at]


Chanida Phaengdara Potter, Little Laos on the Prairie, c.phaengdara [at]


Catzie Vilayphonh, Laos in the House, catziev [at]



Sym/Sum Sponsors

Immigration History Research Center, University of Minnesota
The Immigration History Research Center and Archives share a mission to promote interdisciplinary research on migration, race, and ethnicity in the U.S. and the world; develop archives documenting immigrant and refugee experiences, especially in the U.S.; and support public programming and outreach efforts that connect U.S. immigration history research to contemporary issues and communities.


Asian American Studies Program, University of Minnesota
Asian American Studies faculty, staff, and graduate and undergraduate students are committed to exploring the histories, cultures, communities, experiences, and contemporary issues of Asian Americans. Our mission is to foster interdisciplinary research and creative activity in Asian American Studies; excellence in undergraduate and graduate teaching; and collaborative community outreach.


Lao Student Association, University of Minnesota

LSA(Lao Students Association) is a group of students organized to promote education, the success of our peers, and community engagement. Our organization strives to unite the local community and university community through annual celebrations, social events, and volunteer opportunities.


Center for Lao Studies

The Center for Lao Studies is a unique organization that serves both as an academic and a resource center for scholars, the general public, and persons of Lao heritage around the world. Our mission is to advance knowledge and engagement in the field of Lao Studies through research, education and information sharing. Our vision is to be an institution that leads and excels in the pursuit of knowledge in the field of Lao Studies. At the Center for Lao Studies, we provide an opportunity for all to use our resources, participate in our programs, and to be educated and informed on all issues pertaining to Lao Studies.


Lao Assistance Center of Minnesota

Since 1983, our mission is to enhance the quality of life of Minnesota Lao families .Our goals include meeting basic needs, increased self-reliance and youth development, reduced social isolation and promoting cultural equity. Our 5 interconnected programs annually serve Lao families including at-risk low and moderate-income households: Youth Advancement, Elder Empowerment, Adult Stability, Health Outreach: Prevention Education, and Cultural Engagement.


Urban Research, Outreach and Engagement Center, University of Minnesota

The Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center in North Minneapolis links the University of Minnesota in vital public partnership with urban communities to advance learning, improve quality of life, and discover breakthrough solutions to critical problems. Over the long term, UROC will build thriving, innovative, and respectful collaborations for a healthy and vibrant North Minneapolis, create new models of urban and community development, and strengthen the University of Minnesota as a vitally engaged 21st-century university serving the public good.


Mines Advisory Group

Mines Advisory Group (MAG) is an international organization that saves lives and builds futures through the removal and destruction of landmines, unexploded ordnance (UXO), and other weapons remaining after conflict. Since 1989, MAG has worked in over 35 countries and was co-laureate of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1997. MAG’s leading priority is to protect the lives and well being of the most vulnerable individuals in contaminated areas by providing risk education and removing deadly weapons. Equally important, we focus on development by clearing land in affected areas to open access to agriculture, water, schools, hospitals, and roads.


Legacies of War

Legacies of War is the leading U.S.-based educational and advocacy organization working to address the impact of conflict in Laos during the Vietnam War-era, including removal of unexploded ordnance (UXO). We raise awareness about thehistory of the Vietnam War-era bombing of Laos, provide space for healing the wounds of war, and create greater hope for a future of peace. We are not a direct service or aid organization, nor do we have local offices in Laos. From Washington, DC, we engage and establish relationships with governments, civil society and individuals, especially from the Lao diaspora, to raise awareness and increase financial support for clearance of UXO in Laos. 




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