100 West Clary Avenue

San Gabriel, CA 91776

Phone: 626.309.0622

Fax: 626.307.0717

About Us


Asian Youth Center (AYC) is a 501(c)3 non-profit community based organization serving the social service and educational needs of all youth and families, with a focus on Asian Immigrants.

All of AYC's programs and services help at-risk low income, immigrant, and adjudicated youth overcome the many problems they face at home, in school, and in the neighborhoods where they live.

Since 1989, AYC has helped youth adapt and grow up to become healthy, productive law-abiding citizens who contribute positively to the multi-cultural society of the Greater Los Angeles area.


Asian Youth Center was established by the Asian Task Force of the United Way in 1989 to fill a gap in critical services for Asian immigrant children and families in the San Gabriel Valley. The Asian Youth Project applied for independent nonprofit status and was renamed the Asian Youth Center in 1990. Over the years, AYC has grown and expanded. In 1996 the Asian Youth Center won an At-Risk Youth Competitive Grant from the Open Space District to acquire and then develop their headquarters building named Tawa Youth Center located at 100 Clary Avenue in San Gabriel.


Renovations were completed in July 1997, and the building was opened to youth and families in December 1997.

In the last 15 years, AYC has expanded its scope to serve non Asian youth and families as well, with culturally appropriate services in Cantonese, Mandarin, Vietnamese, Spanish, and English.

In 2003, AYC opened an Annex Building which was re-named the May L. To Educational Center in 2011.

Currently, AYC has offices in San Gabriel, Los Angeles, Lancaster, and Huntington Park. Our combined facilities have recreation areas, an indoor basketball court, computer labs, classrooms, and office space.



2017 Board of Directors
2017 Community Advisory Board



Helen Romero Shaw, 2017 Board President

As Public Affairs Manager for the Southern California Gas Company, Helen Romero Shaw is responsible for the management of Public Affairs and Government Relations functions for ten cities in the west San Gabriel Valley. Prior to joining The Gas Company, Helen was an Agency Relations/Planning Associate with the Los Angeles United Way and assistant to Congressman Edward R. Roybal.  Helen is a graduate of California State University, Northridge and received a Certificate in Management Effectiveness from the USC School of Business.

Helen is a commissioner with the Los Angeles City Workforce Investment Board, as well as the Los Angeles County Workforce Investment Board where she serves as LA County Supervisor Gloria Molina and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s appointee, respectively.  She is a board member of the San Gabriel Valley Economic Partnership where she co-chairs the Marketing Committee.  She participates as a board member of the San Gabriel Valley Public Affairs Network. Helen is the immediate past president of the Arcadia Chamber of Commerce.  She is also a board member of the Alhambra and Lincoln Heights Chamber of Commerce, as well as East Los Angeles College Foundation Board and the United Latino Fund.
Helen joined the Board of Directors of the Asian Youth Center in 2006 and served as the Treasurer for three years before becoming the Vice-President in 2010 and 2011.

Evie Jeang, 2017 Board First Vice President

A Taiwanese-American litigator practicing for more than ten years, Evie P. Jeang, founder and managing partner of Ideal Legal Group, Inc., emphasizes workers’ compensation, labor and employment, family law and immigration.

Ms. Jeang is a pioneer in the most demanding and challenging area of family law: international divorce. She is one of the few attorneys who understands first-hand how to handle the complexities and special considerations of international divorce cases, including the legal, cultural and ramifications. Additionally, Ms. Jeang regularly represents domestic and international companies in business disputes, as well as advises international business owners and executives seeking entrance into the U.S. market on labor, employment, workers’ compensation and contract law.

Currently, she serves as counsel for numerous small- and mid-sized companies and hospitals in Southern California, including Pacific Orthopedic Medical Group, Pacific Ambulatory Surgery Center, Thai BBQ & Noodles, Siam Design Inc., Advanced Process Services (formerly Master Work), Four Season Landscaping Inc., and SummerStorm Entertainment, Inc.

She is licensed to practice in California and New York. Ms. Jeang is fluent in Mandarin Chinese and Taiwanese.

Prior to founding Ideal Legal Group, Ms. Jeang was an attorney with Armstrong & Siegel, serving industry leaders such as Southwest Airlines, Costco Wholesale, LAUSD, Bassett Unified School District, Laidlaw Transit, Adelphia Communications, Goodwill Industries and American Medical Response. She was also a senior associate at State Compensation Insurance Fund, as well as County Counsel for Los Angeles County Child Support Service.

Ms. Jeang has been spotlighted by major news publications, such as Forbes, CNBC, The Wall Street Journal and International Business Times, and regularly guests on the Chinese radio station KAZN AM 1300 and CRAVE television network. She frequently authors articles published by the Daily Journal, The Recorder, National Law Journal and more. She has received numerous honors and awards including: Southern California Super Lawyer Rising Stars – 2013; “Top Women Lawyers” – Los Angeles Daily Journal – 2013; Certificate of Excellence – Los Angeles County Child Support Service; “Thought Leader” – Diversity Journal – 2013; and the 2013 ARAG Helping Hands Award

Ms. Jeang joined the AYC Board of Directors in 2013 and became the Second Vice President in 2014.

David Lawton, 2017 Board Secretary

In 1977, David A. Lawton began his career with the San Gabriel Police Department.  He has worked as a Patrol Officer, Field Training Officer, Investigator, Patrol Sergeant, Administrative Sergeant and Captain.  He was appointed Chief of Police in July of 1990.  

Chief Lawton has a B.S. in Criminal Justice from California State University, Los Angeles, and a M.S. in Management from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona.  He graduated from the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training Command College and the Federal Bureau of Investigation Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar (LEEDS). 

The Chief has been involved in numerous professional and civic organizations.

Chief Lawton is most proud of his volunteer efforts in serving youth. He serves on the National Law Enforcement Exploring Committee. He has volunteered at Law Enforcement Exploring National Conferences and Law Enforcement Exploring National Leadership Academies. He also served on staff at the 2001, 2005 and 2010 Boy Scouts of America National Jamborees. 
The Chief has been on the Board of Directors for the Asian Youth Center for more than 15 years. He has served as the Secretary, Treasurer, and Vice-President in past years and as the Secretary from 2011-present.

Jim Smith, Immediate Past President

Chief of Police Jim Smith began his career with the Monterey Park Police Department as a Police Explorer Scout and has promoted through the ranks of the Department.  During his career he has worked assignments in the Patrol, Investigations, and Community Relations Bureaus.  He served as Interim Chief of Police from September 2009 until being appointed Chief of Police in October 2011.  He also served the City of Monterey Park in the capacity of Interim City Manager twice in 2010.
Chief Smith is a graduate of Mark Keppel High School and earned an Associate of Arts Degree from Mt. San Antonio College, a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice from California State University Los Angeles, and a Masters Degree in Public Administration from the University of La Verne.  He is a graduate of the F.B.I. National Academy and the Sherman Block Supervisory Leadership Institute.
Chief Smith is a member of the Los Angeles County Criminal Justice Mental Health Task Force, and the Co-Chair of the steering committee for the Pacific Clinics and San Gabriel Valley Police Chiefs Association’s Mental Illness and Law Enforcement Systems (M.I.L.E.S.) program. His membership in professional organizations includes the Los Angeles County Police Chiefs Association (1st Vice President),  San Gabriel Valley Police Chiefs Association, FBI National Academy Associates (California Chapter Training Manger), California Peace Officers Association, California Police Chiefs Association, International Association of Chiefs of Police,  and Police Futurists International.
Chief Smith joined the Board of Directors for the Asian Youth Center in 2010, served as the First Vice President for 2013-2014, and was sworn in as the President in January of 2015.


Annual Reports


Annual Report 2016: Becoming a Learning Organization
Annual Report 2015: Helping youth succeed in school, at work, and in life!
Annual Report 2014: Building the Foundation
Annual Report 2013: Opening Doors
Annual Report 2012