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Letter from the Ascend Greater Philadelphia President

Dear Members and Friends,


Happy New Year! As we, Ascend members and friends, emerge from a year aptly dedicated to promoting resilience bringing about transformational changes in our professional and personal lives, I cannot help but look to the future with deep optimism.


Ascend National and our Chapter have adopted an often heard concept referred to as “Belonging” in the corporate workplace.  It is the heart of diversity and is found in the spirit of dialogue.


Diversity needs to be less about race and more about harnessing the diversity of thought and experiences by fostering dialogue. It is not something to be left for others to do for you.  I want to share the work of Dr Elise Boulding, a Norwegian-born American and renowned peace studies scholar.  She defined the culture of peace as “an action concept, involving a constant shaping and reshaping of understandings, situations, and behaviors in a constantly changing life world, to sustain well-being for all”.  The value we create in our daily efforts affords opportunities to cultivate care and consideration for others, forging bonds of friendship and trust. It is an exercise of choice and commitment that only we alone can make.


To me this means leading with compassion - which goes beyond exuding sympathy and empathy.  In the HBR paper, “Effective Leaders Move Beyond Empathy to Compassion” showed a visual (Source: Potential Project) defining Sympathy as “I feel for you”, Empathy as “I feel with you” and Compassion as “I am here to help”.


Ascend will continue to grow our powerful storytelling campaign “The Other Side” launched in 2021. Ascend Foundation will be publishing three position papers this year on Asian/Black Allyship; Mental Health Awareness, and the leadership conundrum impacting pan-Asian women.


I hope you will look for opportunities to bring “belonging” into your workplace and communities as together we move toward a more humanistic outlook and realize our fullest potential.



Elaine Cheong

President, Ascend Greater Philadelphia

We have raised $21,000+ towards Feed Your Hospital initiative till date.  Thank you to all our donors. Click here for more details.  

Our Mission

Ascend is the largest, non-profit Pan-Asian membership organization for business professionals in North America.


As a career lifecycle organization, Ascend offers robust leadership and professional development programs designed to cultivate Pan-Asian talent by supporting its members in reaching their career potential and by supporting its corporate partners to develop a strong, diverse, and inclusive workforce to achieve business growth.

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Membership Benefits
  • MEMBERSHIP PERKS - Our goal is to help each member reach their career aspirations and maximize their leadership potential while bringing increased value to their organizations.


  • PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT - Ascend offers robust professional development and career enhancement programs designed to cultivate Pan-Asian talent.


  • NETWORKING - With enhancing programs, national and regional conferences, business roundtables, mentorship programs, and social networking opportunities where members can engage with and learn from high-potential colleagues.


  • EXECUTIVE COMMUNITY - Our executive community offers senior development opportunities through collaboration with the highest-ranking business schools in the world, such as the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

Sponsorship Benefits

  • BUSINESS GROWTH through relationships and access to Ascend’s networks and Fortune 500 global executives

  • TALENT ACQUISITION, DEVELOPMENT AND RETENTION utilizing Ascend’s networks and culturally relevant leadership programs

  • DIVERSITY AND TALENT ENGAGEMENT through partnerships with Employee Resources Groups and Ascend’s programs, executive networks and best practices sharing

  • MAXIMIZE THE LEADERSHIP POTENTIAL of Pan-Asian talent at your organization

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