The 2024 AAJA Sacramento chapter board has members from all types of media. Board members serve a one-year term, with the exception of the national board representative, who serves a two-year term. Elections are held each fall. Contact the board at [email protected].
Sandy Louey, President
Media Relations Branch Manager, California Energy Commission
Sandy Louey is the manager for the California Energy Commission’s Media and Public Communications Office. Her past communications positions include serving as director of strategic communications for the UC Davis Graduate School of Management, an editor with the California Lighting Technology Center and a media specialist for the U.S. Census Bureau. She was a newspaper reporter for 17 years, with stints at The Patriot-Ledger, The Hartford Courant, The Dallas Morning News, and The Sacramento Bee.
Sandy was selected as co-AAJA Chapter President of the Year in 2013. Active in AAJA since 1988, she is a former national and Bay Area scholarship winner. She has held a number of leadership positions within the organization, including co-president and secretary for the Sacramento chapter, vice-president of the Texas chapter and national board member for the New England and Texas chapters. The Sacramento chapter was named AAJA Chapter of the Year in 2006, 2010 and 2019. Sandy was named AAJA Member of the Year in 2002.
Chris Nguyen, National Board Representative
Anchor, Scripps News
Chris Nguyen is an anchor for Scripps News.
Whether it’s interviewing Super Bowl MVPs or everyday superstars, Chris is passionate about connecting with people from all walks of life. He got his first on-air break as a weekday morning anchor at WAND-TV (NBC) in Central Illinois. From there, he spent time in the Inland Northwest as a weekend evening anchor for KREM-TV (CBS). Prior to moving to the Bay, Chris served as a weekend morning anchor at KXTV (ABC) in Sacramento.
Outside of the newsroom, Chris enjoys hitting the gym, running half-marathons, checking out new restaurants in the city and spending time with friends and family. He is a graduate of the University of Washington.
Vannessa Maravilla, Treasurer
Communications and Media Specialist, WestEd
Vannessa Maravilla is the Communications and Media Specialist at WestEd, in their Division 2, Early Childhood Intervention, Mental Health, and Inclusion section. She focuses on the California Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation (IECMHC) Network project. She develops and implements communication strategies accessible for a variety of audiences on different platforms. She also leads the marketing, visibility, and distribution of IECMHC-related project materials and resources through a variety of mediums.
Prior to working at WestEd, Vannessa worked as an editor in the Production Development department at the California Chamber of Commerce, a digital producer for KCRA 3/My58 and web content analyst for Xerox State Healthcare, LLC.
She studied at the University of California, Davis, and received her Bachelor of Arts degree in English in June 2005. She continued her studies at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University, earning her Master of Arts degree in Magazine, Newspaper and Online Journalism in June 2008.
After graduating from Syracuse University, she did an internship at the Office of Public Information and Communication at the International Atomic Energy Agency headquarters in Vienna, Austria.
Vannessa joined AAJA Sacramento as a student member in 2005 and was one of the chapter scholarship recipients in 2007.
Tillie Fong, Secretary
Field Representative, U.S. Census Bureau
Tillie Fong is a Sacramento native, whose most recent stint in her home town was as head of the edit committee for the Sacramento County Grand Jury in 2019-2020. She has also worked as a staff writer for The Elk Grove Tribune and as a part-time reporter for The Sacramento Bee. Previously, she had spent more than 20 years as a reporter for the Rocky Mountain News in Denver, Colorado. She started her journalism career as an undercover reporter with The Sacramento Bee, where she also did a summer internship. She later worked as an intern reporter for the capital bureau of the Los Angeles Times. and completed the Summer Program for Minority Journalists at the University of California, Berkeley before moving to Colorado.
While at the Rocky Mountain News, she has covered a number of major news events , ranging from the Columbine High School shooting to the 2008 Democratic National Convention. After the paper folded in 2009, Tillie joined many of her former colleagues in starting INDenverTimes.com, an online newspaper in Colorado, and the RockyMountainIndependent.com, an online Denver news magazine.
Tillie graduated from Pitzer College with a bachelor’s degree in political studies and women’s studies and attended the Graduate School of Journalism at UC Berkeley. While at Berkeley, she interned with the Center for Investigative Reporting in San Francisco, and was awarded a Journalism in Asia Fellowship, which she used to interview women leaders in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
A long-time at-large member of AAJA, Tillie participated in the Executive Leadership Program in 2002. She was one of the founding members of the AAJA Denver chapter, and served as both secretary and national board representative for the Denver chapter from 2010-2011. She joined the Sacramento chapter in 2012, and has served on the board since 2013.
Bobby Caina Calvan, Board Member
Global News Manager, The Associated Press
Bobby Caina Calvan is a global news manager with The Associated Press. While he is currently based in New York City, his ties to the Sacramento area remain strong.
As a global news manager he helps monitor The AP’s news report from around the world, making sure what is produced meets the newsroom’s high standards. It also allows him to influence how and what news is covered.
Before taking on this role, his beat was New York City — covering such topics as the migrant crisis, homelessness, post-COVID New York, Mayor Eric Adams and high-profile court cases, including those involving former President Donald Trump.
Cody Kitaura, Board Member
Campus News Editor, UC Davis
Cody Kitaura is a multimedia communications professional with experience covering local and regional news, and even stories with international exposure. He has worked at a number of Sacramento-area news outlets and as a public information officer for the California State Board of Equalization. He has been a member of the Sacramento chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association since 2008, and has served as secretary and vice president.
Maya Miller, Board Member
State Worker Reporter, The Sacramento Bee
Maya Miller is The Sacramento Bee’s state worker reporter. Her stories take readers inside the agencies and departments that keep California functioning. She previously wrote about labor and economic mobility for The Bee’s grant-funded Equity Lab.
Maya came to Sacramento by way of The Seattle Times, where she interned on the business desk for a summer and developed a love for the stories of working people. She also interned for the Star Tribune in Minneapolis and The Des Moines Register in Iowa — her hometown paper. She graduated from Duke University with a degree in public policy.
Outside the newsroom, Maya loves to stay active in the gym and the outdoors. Cooking is her favorite pastime, and she’s always trying new recipes. She also enjoys exploring new restaurants, traveling and deepening her friendships.
Andri Tambunan, Board Member
Independent Visual Journalist
Andri Tambunan is an award-winning independent documentary visual journalist based in Sacramento. His work focuses on social justice, environmental conservation, and identity. Ultimately, his goal is to utilize the visual narrative to inform, engage, and impact social change. Andri regularly contributes to the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and the San Francisco Chronicle. In addition to working with many reputable news publications, he also pursues personal projects and often collaborates with nonprofit organizations, local activists, and community coalitions. Andri’s work has received recognition from the Open Society Foundation, PhotoPhilanthropy, Pictures of the Year International, and his photographs were inducted to the permanent photography collection of The Library of Congress in Washington, DC.
Pamela Wu, Board Member
Director of News and Media Relations, UC Davis Health
Pamela Wu’s career spans the fields of broadcast journalism, public relations, and communications training.
Currently, she is Director of News and Media Relations for UC Davis Health, one of the nation’s leading academic health systems. In 2021 and 2023, she received Emmy Awards in the category of Health/Medical Long-Form Content.
Pamela joined UC Davis in 2009 following a career as a television news anchor and reporter. She has also been a frequent substitute host for Capital Public Radio, Sacramento’s NPR station, where she hosted a documentary that won an Edward R. Murrow Award.
Pamela is the founding co-director of AAJA’s Media Institute, a program in which top journalists and communicators train thought leaders to become valuable sources to the media. In 2015, she was named AAJA’s Member of the Year.
Pam also serves on the board of directors for the Sacramento Press Club.