Palo Alto resident Michele Lew, president and CEO of Asian Americans for Community Involvement (AACI), has left her post after more than 10 years to join Stanford Health Care, the organization announced last week.
Lew joined the large nonprofit, which serves the Asian community in Santa Clara County and was founded in Palo Alto, as CEO in 2005. Since then, AACI has more than doubled in size, has an annual budget of $18 million and serves over 15,000 clients annually, according to an announcement of Lew's departure.
"Working at AACI has been an honor of a lifetime and a highlight of my career," Lew said in a statement. "Along the way, there are so many clients, staff, and volunteers who have inspired and taught me. I am profoundly grateful."
"We are greatly appreciative of Michele's exemplary leadership over the last decade," said Patrick Kwok, chairman of AACI's board of directors, in a statement. The board named Sarita Kohli, who is currently the executive vice president for AACI's Behavioral Health and Wellness Programs, as interim CEO and has also appointed a committee to start the search for a new leader.
Lew holds a bachelor's degree in economics from Yale University and a master's in public policy degree from Harvard University. She and AACI have been involved in local youth issues in recent years, advocating for the district to support culturally relevant counseling and outreach services to students of Asian heritage and their parents.