Belonging: Jeff Le on Growing Up Vietnamese-American, His Work in Politics & Tech, and Solutions for AAPI Racism at Work

A World of Difference
A World of Difference
Belonging: Jeff Le on Growing Up Vietnamese-American, His Work in Politics & Tech, and Solutions for AAPI Racism at Work

Jeff Le has had a career at the highest levels of public policy and politics at the state, federal and international levels. A recognized thought leader in political advocacy and representation, his analysis and opinions have been featured on MSNBC, broadcast television in 40 states, as well as in print at POLITICO MagazineThe New York Times, USA TodayThe Washington Post, FOX NewsThe HillWashingtonianRoll Call, Bustle, Forbes, local and regional newspapers in 35 states. During the height of the #StopAsianHate movement, Jeff penned an opinion piece that received national attention in POLITICO Magazine called I Thought I Knew How to Succeed as an Asian in U.S. Politics. Boy, Was I Wrong. that highlighted his experiences in workplace discrimination in politics and racism throughout his life.


Jeff is now an executive leader in technology where he is Vice President of Public Policy and External Affairs for Rhino, a fintech startup working to give renters everywhere greater financial freedom through affordable insurance options. Prior to joining Rhino, Jeff was U.S. State and Local Public Policy Lead for VMware, a digital technology and infrastructure company, and managed the company’s gubernatorial, state, county, and local relationships across all 50 states and Canada. Jeff focused on emerging technology policy, including privacy, 5G, broadband, cyber, sustainability, workforce development, diversity and inclusion, education, and IT modernization.


He also sits on the Homeland Security Advisory Committee for the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services where he provides recommendations to the Governor’s Homeland Security Advisor on response and policy pertaining to cyber, disasters, terrorism, drug interdiction, intelligence, and other emerging threats.


Jeff previously served as Deputy Cabinet Secretary for California Governor Jerry Brown where he oversaw homeland security and natural disaster response, immigration, economic development, government operations and civil service reform, emerging technology, artificial intelligence, blockchain, future of work, privacy and cybersecurity, food and agriculture, military, veterans and tribal affairs, and led state negotiations for disaster relief from three historic fires and a megadrought.


As Governor Brown’s Deputy Director for External and International Affairs, Jeff interfaced with domestic stakeholders and convened foreign dignitaries on behalf of the state. He has also worked at the State Department, U.S. House of Representatives, OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, United Nations, Carter Center, and the National Democratic Institute.


Jeff graduated from the University of California, San Diego and received his graduate degree as a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar at Central European University. He is a Millennium Leadership Fellow with the Atlantic Council, Term Member on the Council on Foreign Relations, a Truman National Security Project Partner, and has been selected for bilateral leadership programs to Japan, Germany, the UK, Spain, and Italy.


Jeff has completed four 100-mile running races, qualified for the Boston Marathon, has been to every Major League Baseball ballpark, all 50 states, and 85 countries.

Here’s two links that Jeff mentioned in our convo:


Asian Americans Advancing Justice Training:

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