Lan Nguyen is the daughter of Vietnamese refugees and was raised in Long Beach, California. She is an award-winning filmmaker, community organizer, and educator. She is active in community organizing in progressive Southeast Asian American spaces and issues surrounding incarceration and deportation.
Lan utilizes documentary filmmaking as a tool for community organizing and social change. She has directed several short films about social justice issues, which have been screened in festivals, community centers, and universities. Lan’s work has earned her recognition as a 2019 NeXt Doc Fellow and Critical Refugee Studies Collective grantee, and her film Fighting For Family received the Loni Ding Award for Social Justice Documentary in 2020, Best Short Documentary at the Justice on Trial Film Festival in 2021, and the Spotlight Award at Viet Film Fest in 2021.
Lan is also an ethnic studies educator. She has taught ethnic studies at the high school and college level in Long Beach, CA, and San Jose, CA. She currently teaches ethnic studies at U.S. history to immigrant youth in the Peninsula of the Bay Area.
Lan earned her Bachelors of Science in Education at Northwestern University, her Masters of Arts in Asian American Studies at UCLA, and her Masters of Arts in Teaching at San Jose State University.