We are a network of leaders committed to building an equitable future.
Simon Tam is director of marketing and communication at StriveTogether, leading internal and external communication.
Previously, Simon led marketing for organizations such as the Oregon Environmental Council, the Upper Room, and Portland Community College, and played a pivotal role in the development of the Asian Pacific American Network of Oregon, The Oregon Center for Human Rights, and Portland State University’s Cultural Resource Center.
Simon may best be known for winning a landmark case in 2017 that helped expand civil liberties for minorities, unanimously, at the Supreme Court of the United States (Matal v. Tam). He is the founder and bassist of The Slants, one of the first all-Asian American dance rock bands in the world, and also leads The Slants Foundation, a nonprofit organization that is pushing the boundaries of what is possible for arts, activism, and civic engagement.
As a speaker, Tam has appeared at thousands of events across four continents, and is a regular at key industry events such as TEDx, SXSW, and INTA. Each year he speaks to Fortune 500 companies, universities, and many of the world’s top leaders in law, entertainment, and education. He has consulted world leaders and major organizations on policies related to equity, diversity, and inclusion. In 2016, Simon joined President Barack Obama, George Takei, Jeremy Lin, and other celebrities in the #ActToChange campaign to fight bullying.
Simon’s work has been highlighted in media features around the world, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Rolling Stone, and The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. He has earned many accolades for his work, including: The Mark T. Banner award from the American Bar Association, the Hugh M Hefner First Amendment Award, Milestone Case of the Year from Managing IP Magazine, the Ovation Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Distinguished Alum Award from Marylhurst University.
Of all the places I have lived in, Portland, Oregon, has probably shaped me the most. While the city itself is known as a progressive hub, it was originally founded on white supremacy, and the lasting impact shows that until we actively confront the past, systems will continue to drive inequality. In that environment, I learned that the moral arc of the universe does not bend on its own — it requires patience, persistence and people willing to courageously take the necessary risks in order to move us closer to justice.