Born in Pakistan, Samia Javaid reflects on her culture and celebrating traditions in the U.S. during Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
5/27/2022 1:30 P.M.
3 minute read
ACA International’s membership and the accounts receivable management (ARM) industry are increasingly diverse. In May, ACA is highlighting member voices as part of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month.
The U.S. has recognized Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders nationally in May since June 1978; however, the full month as we know it today was not recognized until May 1, 2009, when former President Barack Obama signed a proclamation declaring May as Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, according to whitehouse.gov.
Samia Javaid, director of debt recovery services at Horizon Reality Advisors in Seattle, was born in Pakistan and her family moved to California when she was 12 years old.
“Being born in Pakistan gave me the opportunity to learn multiple languages and learn about the culture before we came to the U.S.,” Javaid said.
Javaid has worked in property management for more than 12 years.
“I started as a bookkeeper, joined the corporate training department, and eventually started our internal debt recovery department about four years ago,” she said.
Javaid shares more about her heritage and career here.
Q. How has your heritage shaped the person you are today?
A. I think of my heritage as this strong but silent force that’s always present. I am not always cognizant of it. However, I see my perspective and decisions impacted by it every day.
Q. Does your family have any traditions that are especially important to you?
A. There is a huge emphasis on always being grateful regardless of what you are going through. Similarly, I was taught to at least try to be aware and respectful of what others may be going through. The latter piece has played a huge role in my day-to-day work life. It impacts my interactions with individuals who may be struggling financially and need someone to be compassionate and helpful.
Q. Who are the role models or mentors who have influenced you or helped guide you in your career?
A. My current role model and mentor is my supervisor, Clint Cunningham. He leads by example by being compassionate and open-minded. Launching our internal debt recovery department was no easy feat. He was extremely supportive throughout the way.
Q. What brings you joy about your heritage and culture?
A. The ability to speak and read another language allows me to enjoy music and poetry from different perspectives.
Q. What does AAPI Heritage Month mean to you?
A. I recently became a mother. Being a parent has made me think of topics and questions that I have not thought about for a while, such as what do I want to pass on to my daughter? What kind of opportunities and obstacles would she face when she steps out into the world? AAPI Heritage Month highlights our history, culture and achievements in the U.S. Honestly, I do not recall AAPI Heritage Month being celebrated as visibly when I was in high school. It means the world to me that my daughter will experience it differently.
Do you know a member you would like to see featured in ACA Daily’s Member Spotlight or Collector magazine’s Origin Story? Would you like to share your story? We are also looking to highlight our international members and new members of ACA. Reach out to our communications team at [email protected] with your ideas. We’d love to hear from you!
If you have executive leadership updates or other member news to share with ACA, contact our communications department at [email protected]. View our publications page for more information and our news submission guidelines here.