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Board of Directors

  • James W. Kao, Ph.D.

    James W. Kao, Ph.D.
    Chairman and Director
    James W. Kao, Ph.D. Dr. Kao is the Chairman of the Board, and has served as a member since 2015. Dr. Kao had a long and distinguished career at Philip Morris, USA in the research and development department. Since his retirement in 1998, Dr. Kao has been a successful investor in many companies. Dr. Kao holds a B.A. from National Taiwan University, an M.B.A. from Virginia Commonwealth University and his Ph.D. from Miami University. Our Board considered Dr. Kao’s experiences as an investor and his educational background in determining that he should be a member of our Board.  
  • Peter M. Chang

    Peter M. Chang
    Vice Chairman and Director
    Peter M. Chang. Mr. Chang is the Vice Chairman of the Board, and has served as a member since the founding of the Bank in 2008. Mr. Chang is the President of Sunshine Paper LLC, which purchases and exports waste paper, as well as imports PPE for sale to the state of California and the private sector. As such he works with recycling, shipping and exporting to companies in the United States and provides raw materials to paper manufacturing companies in Southeast Asia, China and Taiwan. Mr. Chang holds a B.S. in Economics from University of California at Los Angeles. Our Board considered Mr. Chang’s experience in international trade financing and his long-standing relationships within the Chinese-American business community in determining that he should be a member of our Board. 
  • Raymond H. Yu

    Raymond Yu
    Vice Chairman and Director

    Raymond H. Yu. Mr. Yu is the Vice Chairman of the Board, and has served as a member since October 2018. He was previously Chairman of the Board of Directors of First American International Corp. and First American International Bank, which the Company acquired on October 15, 2018. Mr. Yu brings extensive development, finance, construction and management of residential and commercial real estate experience, and a history of leadership in community-based organizations, to his role as the Vice Chairman of the Board of Directors. Mr. Yu is the President of Yuco Real Estate Company, Inc. and Yuco Management, Inc., developers, managers and owners of a diverse portfolio of commercial and residential properties located throughout New York City. The Yuco group of companies has contributed to the revitalization and renaissance of neighborhoods such as the Lower East Side, Clinton and Harlem in Manhattan and Sunset Park, Flatbush and East New York in Brooklyn by building high quality affordable rental properties, and has successfully developed commercial and market rate residential properties in neighborhoods such as Murray Hill, the East Village, NoHo, Brooklyn Heights and Williamsburg. Mr. Yu is a Vice Chair of the Board of Directors of the YMCA of Greater New York, is a founding Board member of the NoHo NY Business Improvement District and is an Advisory Board member of the New York Housing Conference. Mr. Yu is also a member of the Executive Committee of the Columbia College Alumni Association Board of Directors and serves as co-chair of the Columbia College Fund. Mr. Yu holds a B.A and a B.S from Columbia University. Our Board considered Mr. Yu’s experience in real estate, his extensive knowledge in the New York market, and his involvement as a board member in multiple well-established organizations in determining that he should be a member of our Board. 

    • Wendell Chen

      Wendell Chen
      Director
      Wendell Chen. Mr. Chen has served as a member of the Board since November 2010. Mr. Chen has been the Chief Executive Officer of US Development LLC, a real estate development firm, since 2015. From 2006 to 2015, Mr. Chen served as the Chief Executive Officer and managing partner of Vanetti, Inc., a start-up firm that successfully designed, manufactured, and delivered branded and private labeled men’s suits to specialty shops and major chain stores in the United States. Mr. Chen holds a B.A. from California State University Pomona. Our Board considered Mr. Chen’s experience as an executive of a small business that does international trade and his relationships within the Chinese American business community in determining that he should be a member of our Board.
    • Christina Kao

      Christina Kao
      Director
      Christina Kao. Ms. Kao has been a local business owner in Las Vegas, Nevada since 2017.  From 2009 to 2017, Ms. Kao was a marketing manager for a number of major U.S. corporations.  Ms. Kao holds a B.S. from Virginia Commonwealth University and an M.B.A. from Harvard University.  She is passionate about mentoring young women and is trained in Cuisine at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, France.  Our Board considered Ms. Kao’s marketing experience and involvement as a business owner in determining that she should be a member of our Board.  
      • Chie Min (Christopher) Koo, CPA

        Chie Min (Christopher) Koo, CPA
        Director
        Chie Min (Christopher) Koo, CPA. Mr. Koo has served as a Board member since the founding of the Bank in 2008. Mr. Koo is the President and founder of Christopher Koo Accountancy, an accounting and tax service in the city of Diamond Bar. Mr. Koo holds an M.B.A. and a B.S. in Hotel and Restaurant Management from U.S. International University in San Diego, California. Our Board considered Mr. Koo’s experience as a C.P.A. and his relationships in the Chinese-American community in determining that he should be a Board member. 
      • Alfonso Lau

        Alfonso (Al) Lau
        Director
        Alfonso Lau. Mr. Lau is a retired banking executive who was the founding President of First American International Corp. and First American International Bank (“FAIB”), where he served for 15 years and which the Company acquired on October 15, 2018. Prior to FAIB, Mr. Lau worked at Citibank and Capital One Bank. He is extremely knowledgeable in all areas of banking, with a deep understanding in mortgage banking.  Mr. Lau is a trustee of the National Community Investment Fund, a non-profit equity trust fund created to invest in banks and other financial institutions that are community development financial institutions. Mr. Lau holds a B.S. and M.B.A from Columbia University. He is also a member Rotary International.  Our Board considered Mr. Lau’s significant banking experience, particularly mortgage banking, and his ability to understand complicated financial statements in determining that he should be a member of our Board.
        • Chuang-I (Christopher) Lin, Ph.D.

          Chuang-I (Christopher) Lin, Ph.D.
          Director
          Chuang-I (Christopher) Lin, Ph.D. Dr. Lin has served as a Board member since 2010. Dr. Lin is the President and Chairman of three separate specialty real estate firms: Forte Resources, Inc., which specializes in senior and affordable housing management and development, Sonnycal Development Company, which specializes in real estate development in market-rate residential houses and industrial warehouses, and Linkage Financial Group Inc., which specializes in real estate development in China. Dr. Lin previously served as a director of General Bank from 1981 to 2003. Dr. Lin holds a B.S. from Cheng Kung University, a M.S. from National Tsing Hua University and a Ph.D. from Duquesne University. Our Board considered Dr. Lin’s real estate background, specifically in affordable housing, and his prior experience as a bank director in determining that he should be a Board member. 
        • Feng Lin

          Feng Lin
          Director
          Feng (Richard) Lin. Mr. Lin has served as a Board member since 2011. Mr. Lin is the President and Chief Financial Officer of Arche Investments, LLC, a real estate development firm specializing in developing condominiums and work-live detached condominium projects in Southern California. In addition, he is a regional director of Harmony Bioscience Inc., a personal healthcare product company. Mr. Lin holds a B.S. in Economics from University of California, Irvine. Our Board considered Mr. Lin’s real estate background in determining that he should be a Board member. 
        • Ko-Yen Lin

          Ko-Yen Lin
          Director
          Ko-Yen Lin. Mr. Lin has served as a Board member since the founding of the Bank in 2008. Mr. Lin is a real estate investor and manager of motels, office buildings, shopping centers and mobile home parks. Mr. Lin previously served as a Commissioner of Overseas Affairs for the Government of Taiwan. Mr. Lin also previously served as a director of General Bank from 1986 to 2003 and United National Bank from 1982 to 1985. From 2003 to 2007, Mr. Lin served as a senior advisory board member of Cathay Bank. Our Board considered Mr. Lin’s real estate background and his prior experience as a bank director in determining that he should be a Board member. 
          • Paul Lin

            Paul Lin
            Director
            Paul Lin. Mr. Lin has served as a Board member since 2012. Mr. Lin is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Drill Spot, LLC, an ecommerce company specializing in industrial and hardware supplies for contractors. Drill Spot has generated over $100 million since its inception in 2005. Due to the success of his startup, in 2010 Mr. Lin was named one of Inc. Magazine’s Top 10 Asian Entrepreneurs. Mr. Lin attended the University of Colorado in Boulder and studied Information Systems. In his spare time, Mr. Lin designs technology products and currently has three issued design patents. Our Board considered Mr. Lin’s experience as the founder of a small business and his strong technology and security background in determining that he should be a member of our Board. 
          • Yee Phong (Alan) Thian

            Yee Phong (Alan) Thian
            President and Chief Executive Officer
            Yee Phong (Alan) Thian. Mr. Thian has served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company since its formation in 2011 and the Bank since it began operations in 2008. Mr. Thian was appointed twice to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”) Community Bank Advisory Committee and previously served as a member on the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) Community Bank Advisory Committee. Mr. Thian previously served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of First Continental Bank from July 2000 until its acquisition by United Commercial Bank in July 2003. Following the acquisition, Mr. Thian served as the Executive Vice President and Regional Director of United Commercial Bank until April 2007. From June 1997 to October 1997, Mr. Thian served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of American International Bank and continued to serve as a director of the bank until January 2000. Mr. Thian began his banking career at General Bank where he served as a director from June 1982 to June 1997 and also in various officer positions. He is the brother of Fui Ming (Catherine) Thian, who is also a director of the Company and the Bank. Mr. Thian holds a B.A. from Nan Yang University. Our Board considered Mr. Thian’s experience as the Chief Executive Officer of successful Chinese-American banks, his knowledge of and experience with real estate investment and development, his experience advising other companies in conducting business in small to midsized communities that are similar to those in our primary market areas, his experience as an advisory board member for the FDIC and the CFPB, and his knowledge of the business community in the Chinese-American market area in determining that he should be a member of our Board. 
            • Fui Ming (Catherine) Thian

              Fui Ming (Catherine) Thian
              Director
              Fui Ming (Catherine) Thian. Thian. Ms. Thian has served as a Board member since 2010. Ms. Thian has been in the real estate management business for over 30 years and is responsible for operating and accounting for multiple apartment complexes and mobile home parks. Ms. Thian holds a B.S. in Commerce from Nanyang University. She is the sister of our Chairman, Mr. Thian. Our Board considered Ms. Thian’s experience in real estate management and preparing financial statements in determining that she should be a Board member.