2023 Recipients of the APSA Lee Ann Fujii Diversity Fellowship Program Travel Grant

APSA is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2023 APSA Lee Ann Fujii Diversity Fellowship Program Travel Grant. This grant was made possible by the generous contributions of the Fujii Family and Dr. Fujii's colleagues and friends.

  • Gregory Amusu, Princeton University
  • Keith Chew, University of Texas, Austin
  • Rikio Inouye, Princeton University
  • Leann Mclaren, Duke University
  • Angel M. Villegas-Cruz, Pennsylvania State University
  • Zoe Walker, University of Michigan
  • Alex Richard Zhao, University of California, San Diego




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Keith Padraic Chew is a PhD candidate at the department of government at the University of Texas at Austin. Keith's research focuses on intersectional (gender and ethnic) representation in legislatures and cabinets and their effects in Asia. He currently manages the Politics of Race and Ethnicity Lab at the University of Texas at Austin. The 2023 Lee Ann Fujii Travel Grant will enable Keith to present his paper titled "Gender, Ethnicity, and Double-Minorities in Asian Cabinets" in the New Frontiers in Identity Politics panel at the 2023 APSA Annual Meeting. 








Inouye - ResizedRikio Inouye is a Ph.D. candidate in Princeton's politics department, studying how race and racial preferences shape foreign policymaking and support. He also has ongoing research on vaccine diplomacy and great power rivalry in the Asia/Indo-Pacific region. This grant will help him travel to the 2023 APSA Annual Meeting in-person where he will present ongoing research and connect with both the cross-institutional community of race and IR scholars as well as DFP alumni and members. At Princeton he co-leads the Students of Color and Allies (SoCA) group in the politics department and has contributed to new graduate courses on race in IR and the establishment of the Race and Ethnic Politics subfield at Princeton. Prior to his Ph.D. studies, Rikio taught English and English debate as part of the Japan Exchange Teaching (JET) programme. He holds a BA with highest departmental honors from UC Berkeley and an MA from Princeton.






Mclaren - ResizedLeann Mclaren is a PhD candidate in political science at Duke University. Her research interests are in race, ethnicity, and politics, American politics, Black political behavior, immigration, and social movements. Her work has been supported by the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship (NSF-GRFP), the American Political Science Association Minority Fellowship Program (APSA-MFP), and the Russell Sage Foundation Doctoral Dissertation Grant, among others. Her dissertation research explores how Black candidates with "invisible identities", specifically immigration status, strategize and are perceived in political campaigns. She received her B.A. from the University of Connecticut in political science and history, as well as an M.A. in political science from Duke University. Her co-authored published work can be found in the American Political Science Review. At the 2023 APSA Annual Meeting, she is presenting a chapter of her dissertation titled “Race, Immigration, and Representation, the Case of Black Immigrant Candidates.” Leann intends to use the grant to help defray travel costs associated with presenting at the Annual Meeting, as well as the APSA pre-conference in political communication at the University of California, Los Angeles.





Villegas Cruz - Resized

Angel M. Villegas-Cruz (he/him) is a fifth-year Ph.D. candidate at Pennsylvania State University. He is pursuing a dual-title Ph.D. in political science and Asian studies. His research interests focus on the relationship between digital technologies and international politics, with an area specialization in China. In his dissertation, Angel examines how countries use social media to advance their foreign policy interests and whether these efforts can influence foreign public opinion. He is a proud Spring 2020 APSA DFP Fellow. Angel received an M.A. in political science from Penn State in May 2021 with specializations in international relations and comparative politics. Prior to attending Penn State, he received an M.A. in international relations from Beijing Normal University, China. Born and raised in Puerto Rico, he also holds a B.A. in sociology from the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras Campus. Angel will use the Lee Ann Fujii DFP Grant to participate in the 2023 APSA Annual Meeting, where he will present a paper as part of a panel he has organized. The panel explores the increasingly vital connection between political communications and international relations in the digital era.






Walker - Resized

Zoe Walker is a Ph.D. candidate (ABD) in political science at the University of Michigan. Her dissertation research interrogates Black Americans' complex beliefs about meritocracy and the American Dream in the face of discrimination. Her broader interests include public opinion about social inequality, racial attitudes, and political behavior. Outside of her research, Zoe is heavily involved in promoting racial equity on and off campus. She co-founded her department’s Interdisciplinary Race, Ethnicity and Politics workshop, and co-led her department’s Political Scientists of Color affinity group. She also assisted with the Party at the Mailbox “get-out-the-vote” initiative in Detroit. She currently serves as vice president of Students of Color of Rackham which serves graduate students at the University of Michigan and is a member of the APSA Race, Ethnicity, and Politics Graduate Student Issues Committee. Zoe holds a B.A. in political science from the University of Notre Dame where she received the award for best undergraduate senior thesis in American Politics. Her research has been supported by the National Academies Ford Foundation, the American Political Science Association, and the Russell Sage Foundation.






Zhao - Resized

Alex Richard Zhao is a third year PhD student in the department of political science at the University of California San Diego. He is originally from Tiis Tsoh Sikaad Chapter of the Navajo Nation and graduated cum laude from the University of California, San Diego before starting his PhD program. Alex’s research seeks to explain variation in Indigenous self-governance by studying the intricacies of Indigenous American political preferences, institutions, and geography. He is a member of UCSD’s Race and Ethnic Politics (REP) lab, American Indian Graduate Student Alliance (AIGSA), and recipient of the Ford Predoctoral Fellowship. Alex is a proponent of ensuring research benefits the communities he investigates while building empathy through the knowledge of Indigenous people. Therefore, he often collaborates with Indigenous and non-Indigenous policy makers and researchers back home in the Navajo Nation and abroad. After earning his PhD, Alex aspires to continue research dedicated to servicing Indigenous populations by pursuing a position in academia.