Director of Programs
Bessie Dvora China Leipakumakaniokalani Ching (China Ching) is the Director of Programs for the Christensen Fund, with oversight over the Program Officer and Grants Management teams. In this leadership role China works to enhance the quality and impact of our grantmaking while strengthening Christensen’s efforts to effectively evaluate and communicate our programmatic outcomes and learning.
China was named according to Hawaiian and Jewish traditions and is honored to carry names from the matrilineal lines of both her parents. She has provided capacity-building assistance to Indigenous communities across the United States and in Africa with a particular focus on using media technologies and storytelling to promote social and community change and to complement cultural documentation and preservation. China was a founding member of Third World Majority, a new media training and production resource center where she was the Director of Circle of Voices, a Native-specific training program. She spent four years at the National Native American AIDS Prevention Center where she developed a national anti HIV-stigma campaign and authored a media production-based HIV prevention curriculum for Native American and Native Hawaiian teens. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Hispanic Studies from Connecticut College and her Master’s Degree in Oral History from Columbia University.
China is a proud (and fierce) aunty and godmother and blessed to be the daughter and granddaughter of artists.