Where you grew up and your background can often have surprising effects on our lives and careers. We’ve asked folks from the community to tell us about how their background has affected them.

Stephanie Chui | Founder of Gourmais

Growing up in LA as a first-generation Asian American certainly shaped who I am today. With the breadth of diversity in LA, I was constantly exposed to different cultures from a young age. This fostered an openness and interest in tasting new cuisines, learning unfamiliar traditions, and trying new things! In this welcoming environment, I could also tap into my Asian heritage as well as my American values. Read more>>

Diondre Mompoint | Author & Scientist

I am from sunny South Florida, more specifically, Miami, Florida. I grew up in a Caribbean household with my father being Haitian and my mother Bahamian. My upbringing was good considering how hard my parents worked. I am the youngest of my two siblings and some would say a miracle baby. Read more>>

Ziwei Li | Founder & CEO of Wei Good Food

My parents and I immigrated to the US when I was 3 years old, and I grew up in Virginia. As a child, I never quite felt like I belonged in either Asian or American culture. I had the “lunchbox moments” at school where the delicious food my mom lovingly packed for me was made fun of or thoroughly questioned as I sat with my cheeks burning with embarrassment. Read more>>

Luísa Dalé Silva | Cinematographer

I’m from Brazil, the 5th largest country in the world, a country so rich in its culture and natural resources. I was born in the State of São Paulo but spent a vast part of my life in the young capital, Brasília, a city that was built in the 60s to be the new capital of Brazil, no longer Rio. Read more>>