Celebrating Rad's AAPI Community

Celebrating Rad's AAPI Community
So far this spring, we’ve reconnected with friends and loved ones outside, rediscovered places we love, and thrived off the optimism in the air. The one thing we've missed? The big spring getaway.
Fortunately, you don’t need to crowd the family into the car or navigate a busy airport to find that escape. Your getaway can be as easy as two wheels and a few miles of bike path. This May, Rad Power Bikes will show our riders that there’s a big, bike-friendly world out there just waiting to be discovered.
And since it’s National Bike Month, we’re also celebrating you, ebike riders— the forward-thinking, free-spirited individuals who've made the powerful choice to be on the forefront of something great.

 

We take great pride in the diversity of our team here at Rad - after all, diversity is part of our RADICAL values

To close out AAPI Heritage Month, we wanted to amplify the voices and celebrate the perspectives of our Asian American and Pacific Islander Raddites -- and, of course, talk about bikes.

These are just a few of the passionate, dedicated and unique AAPI humans here at Rad. And if you're ever interested in learning more about what they have to say, you should consider joining the Rad team

 

Kay Lee

Corporate Counsel

Tell us about your cultural identity and background. What does celebrating AAPI heritage mean to you?

I’m originally from Taiwan and, to me, AAPI heritage means living and celebrating traditions in your everyday life.

We celebrate all the cultural holidays in our house with our toddler son and make sure we regularly have Taiwanese snacks and food around. I’m a big foodie, so a lot of that comes down to food. Trying new food is the easiest way to approach and get in touch with new cultures and it's something everybody can relate to. I love sharing it with people who may not be familiar with it.

 

What brought you to Rad Power Bikes?

I loved the energy. I really liked the RADICAL Values. Every single value is one I identify with, and for me, I’m at the point of my career where that’s a factor in choosing where I work. I don’t want to just be a corporate counsel. I want to be at a company that celebrates diversity and does the right thing.

I also really like bikes. It’s a design that’s existed for a very long time and I think it’s beautiful. A fun fact about me is that I was actually an urban bike challenge champion in Philly. It was one of those cool ones where you have to ride, solve puzzles, and if you end up finding all the clues and reaching the final destination in the shortest amount of time, you win.

Me and my wife and two women we met ahead of time won. It was an all woman group, which was funny because the organizers didn’t expect that. They had to give us the second place prizes because all the first place ones were extra-large men’s tee shirts.

I’ve always liked bikes, even though I still don’t know how to change a flat tire.

 

What's something outside of work that you’re passionate about?

I love coffee. I buy green coffee beans and roast them at home. I designed my own little coffee bags and give them out as holiday gifts to people.

 

How can those who don't share the AAPI experience be better allies?

A recent surge in attacks on members of the AAPI community, especially on older folks, has been on my mind when I'm asked questions like this. 

It's a sensitive subject and, I get it, people tend to avoid talking about sensitive subjects. For me personally, I feel like I have more allyship when people do talk about it. 

It’s not taboo. I think just checking in is the easiest way to show you care. If you had a friend who was mugged, you’d check in with them. It’s like that in a broader sense.

It’s good to have people you can talk openly about it with. You don’t need to provide a solution to address it. The conversations don’t even have to be goal-oriented. It’s just about acknowledging it and checking in.

 

Saakshi Jain

Product Quality Engineer

Tell us about your cultural identity and background. What does celebrating AAPI heritage mean to you?

I was born and brought up in a small town of Vaijapur, located near Aurangabad in central India, which is home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites — the Ajanta and Ellora Caves.

India is known for its religious and cultural diversity and I have always considered myself lucky to have grown up celebrating this. Recognizing AAPI heritage is a really good way to make people aware of AAPI people’s contributions to the American story and It’s also a great opportunity to help people become aware of the problems they face as well. Making sure that everyone is heard has always really mattered to me.

 

What brought you to Rad Power Bikes?

When I was initially looking for jobs, I was nervous about how I would tackle the huge cultural differences since this would be the first time working outside my country of origin.

I was attracted to Rad listing 'Diversity' as one of the company’s values. I felt assured that my cultural differences would add value and that every voice would heard.

I’ve been fond of cycling since childhood. I used to ride a bicycle to school starting at 8 years old. It’s always been fun and now, as an adult, I really appreciate the physical and environmental benefits we get from riding.

 

What's something outside of work that you’re passionate about?

I love playing badminton and enjoy outdoor sports, although I’m certainly not a professional. In my career gap, I discovered my passion for cooking and painting!

 

How can those who don't share the AAPI experience be better allies?

In my limited experience in the U.S., I have fortunately found almost everyone to be extremely helpful and unbiased, though I understand that's not the case for everyone. In my opinion, being welcoming to people from different cultures and giving them an unbiased platform where they can share their point of views and express themselves freely is vital.

 

Aman Prakash

Senior Graphic Designer

 

Tell us about your cultural identity and background. What does celebrating AAPI heritage mean to you?

I am a Pacific Island-born Indian from the Fiji Islands. Hindi is my native language and English is my second. I came to America with my family in the early 2000s and have lived here ever since. I've had a great opportunity to experience American school life and even graduated with a BFA.

I celebrate AAPI Heritage Month to move beyond the persistent racism, assumption-based stigmas, and old ways of thinking and amplify that we are all, as a species, equally brilliant, creative, and rich in wonder and beauty. Not only that, I celebrate this month’s ability to educate and unite.

Scientifically speaking, we are the one species that's doing more worldwide damage at a rapid pace than any other, and we need to work together to help keep all species on this planet safe and secure. With that goal, it can be challenging to alter unconscious biases, especially if one has not had the opportunity to grow up in a multi-cultural environment; however, there is no progress without work on all fronts.

 

What brought you to Rad Power Bikes?

Helping the environment without compromising the modern-day ability to move around swiftly, all while having fun? You bet I wanted in on this.

Rad is firmly grounded in the idea of reducing the damage that we do to the world we live in. Nature is innately evolutionary and can heal itself if given an appropriate amount of time with substantially decreased harmful elements. We’re lucky to have so many like-minded, respectful, and brilliant people working towards a singular goal.

This summer, I'll be out there doing my part by zipping around on my RadMini!

 

What's something outside of work that you’re passionate about?

When I’m not nerding out about designs, the latest visual trends, or interesting workflow techniques, I'm a big fan of physics — particularly astrophysics.

I find it exciting because we benefit from so much of what has been learned, theorized, or practiced, especially with the newly found muons, Higgs fields, and Higgs boson particles. There is a story behind how sub-atomic particles come together to create something larger than themselves; air, water, food, animals, and humans! It just goes to show how a collective of like-minded organisms working towards the same goal can achieve great things.

Plus, it’s helped me craft a whole lot of design concepts.

 

How can those who don't share the AAPI experience be better allies?

First thing's first: Research. There is a library at your fingertips, and you can find any knowledge your mind thirsts for if you're curious enough to put in the work. Learn and be curious.

Being an ally isn't just standing in a demonstration or protests, or simply saying it aloud, or throwing down supportive emojis on slack; it's your actions. You have the power to draw the boundaries of what you will and will not tolerate. It's not easy, but it's worthwhile.

 

Pansy Lee

Associate Product Manager 

 

Tell us about your cultural identity and background. What does celebrating AAPI heritage mean to you?

I’m Chinese. I’m originally from Hong Kong, where I was born and raised. After graduating from college, I moved to London for my master’s degree and then came to the U.S. two years ago.

To me, celebrating AAPI heritage means taking a closer look at it, asking what it means, and just remembering your own culture — valuing it and cherishing it.

Some Asian and Chinese people who come to the states will try to blend in to the point that it seems like they want to get rid of their culture. I think it’s very important for people to remember who they are originally. I understand that it can be hard to be Asian but that doesn't mean that you need to let go of your regional identity.  You can still have the same values. It’s not like I need to be white in order to feel like I’m living in the U.S. or being an American.

 

What brought you to Rad Power Bikes?

My story is hilarious. My husband and I love going to the local breweries in Seattle and there’s one we always go to right across the street from Rad’s headquarters.

I’d always see people test riding them and think “oh my god, those bikes are really cool.” When I found out employees get their own bikes, I immediately applied for a job.

I grew up with cycling. It’s always been one of my leisure activities. My mom really liked it and I’d always go with her, and then in Europe, I’d cycle everywhere too because public transportation there is still really expensive. I almost view cycling as my life partner.

 

What's something outside of work that you’re passionate about?

I like art a lot. Before joining Rad, I was an art consultant in Europe and Asia. I did a lot of work for independent art galleries and museums, like curating the shows or helping them determine the authenticity of their antiques. It’s really fascinating. I still do it on the side from time to time to help galleries evaluate their antiques.

I’m not talented when it comes to painting or anything like that but I like being the person behind the scenes who helps people get their stories out — especially when the storyteller doesn’t speak English.

 

How can those who don't share the AAPI experience be better allies?

Honestly, I think they just need to listen. They need to try to keep their mind open when they listen to certain things. When you listen with a narrow mind, no matter what you’re hearing, you’ll twist the assumptions in your head.

I understand people trying to empathetic but it’s more important to listen objectively. Absorb things, don’t just tell me “you understand” right away. That's not working. 

 

 

 

If you're interested in joining an innovative team working hard to usher in the next generation of mobility, or if you just want to learn more about our values as a company, pay a visit to our career page. We're hiring!

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