Inaugural Asian International Leadership Summit set to commence

Bing Goei, who was appointed Third Ward Commissioner in March of 2024, will present opening remarks at the Asian International Leadership Summit Friday, April 12. Photo courtesy of City of Grand Rapids.

A first-of-its-kind Asian International Leadership Summit is scheduled to take place on Friday, April 12 at the Goei Center, 9 a.m. Many local leaders who are rooted in the Asian Pacific region will take part in the inaugural event. Marketing director for Broadway Grand Rapids and owner of Halo Halo Multimedia, Jennifer Pascua will serve as one of the summit’s moderators.

“This groundbreaking event marks a pivotal moment for our community, as we come together to harness the diverse talents and perspectives of our Asian and international communities for the prosperity of the region,” Pascua wrote in a statement.

Bryan Esler
George Aquino and Samantha Suarez share drinks at MDRD. Aquino will give the keynote address at the first ever Asian International Leadership Summit in Grand Rapids April 12, 2024. Grand Rapids Magazine file photo.

Bing Goei will provide opening remarks. Goei, a 64-year Grand Rapids resident, is the first Asian American to serve on the Grand Rapids City Commission. He is a small business entrepreneur and owner of two Grand Rapids businesses – Eastern Floral and the Goei Center. George Aquino, who recently announced he’s stepping down as vice president and managing director of AHC Hospitality to pursue a career opportunity in the Philippines, will present a keynote address.


Amidst the summit’s array of workshops focusing on technology, education, civic leadership, and business, speaker Michelle Li, a TV anchor from Missouri involved in a widely-publicized racist incident, will share her journey of transforming adversity into a platform for advancing Asian representation on a national scale.

West Michigan boasts a robust small business landscape and a burgeoning global economy, offering opportunities that call for the unique skills and insights showcased at the summit. This gathering serves as a platform to cultivate connections, foster collaboration, and leverage the rich, diverse talents within our communities.

Committed to nurturing an inclusive environment the West Michigan Asian American Association work to ensure every Asian member of the community feels valued and integral to the community’s fabric. Through dialogue, exchange of ideas, and collaboration, they’re working to pave the way for a future where our collective talents are recognized as the cornerstone of West Michigan’s prosperity.

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