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This profile was last updated on 8/14/15  and contains information from public web pages and contributions from the ZoomInfo community.

Ms. Cyndi S. Chen

Wrong Cyndi S. Chen?

Instructor of Chinese

Phone: (515) ***-****  HQ Phone
Email: c***@***.edu
Drake University
Men's Soccer - Knapp Center 2507 University Avenue
Des Moines , Iowa 50311
United States

Company Description: Drake's Cowles Library ( is committed to creating and maintaining a dynamic learning environment focused on service and guided by the...   more

Employment History

  • Chinese Language Instructor
    Drake University
  • Adjunct Faculty
    Des Moines Area Community College
  • Administrator
    Iowa , Inc.
  • President
    Iowa Sister States
  • President
    Asian American Council
  • Institutional Research Director, Mathematics Instructor, Mathematics Curriculum Coordinator
    Western Iowa Tech Community College
  • Chairwoman
    Commission on the Status of Iowans of Asian
  • Administrator
    Commission on the Status of Iowans of Asian
  • Governor Ray and CAPI Administrator
    Iowa Department of Human Rights
  • Resource Coordinator
    Iowa Department of Human Rights
  • Administrator of the Asian and Pacific Islander Section
    Iowa Department of Human Rights
  • Representative, Administrator of the Division On the Status
    Neighborhood Finance Corporation

Board Memberships and Affiliations


  • bachelor's degrees , Economics , Mathematics and Computer Science
  • Master's degree , Mathematics
  • doctorate coursework , Adult and Higher Education Administration
42 Total References
Web References
Welcome to Chinese Association of Iowa (CAI)!, 6 Nov 2014 [cached]
Cyndi S. Chen Chairperson of Commission on the Status of Iowans of Asian and Pacific
Welcome to Chinese Association of Iowa (CAI)!, 30 Oct 2007 [cached]
Cyndi S. Chen
Cyndi Chen is an advocate for the Asian and Pacific Islander Iowans. Volunteering is her life style. "Live One Day A Time And Make It A Master Piece" is Cyndi's motto.
She is a data analyst, database and finance management for a federally funded project to improve transition outcomes for youth with disability, came from Taiwan in 1985 as a visiting scholar to teach Chinese Language at Buena Vista College (University now) in Storm Lake, Iowa. She has also taught mathematics, statistics, and Chinese Language; has provided trainings on how to work with Asian Americans to school teachers and administrators, medical doctors and nurses, and others; is a frequent speaker on data and issues of Asians and Pacific Islanders in Iowa.
Prior coming to Iowa, Cyndi told stories in hospitals and libraries and trained college students as storytellers; worked with orphans and low-income students as a tutor and a summer camp counselor; guided children at Taipei Zoo. She was a social worker in refugee camps in Thailand in 1980 - 1981 to provide language, vocational and recreational programs to over 10,000 Cambodian refugees and assist them to resettle to other countries.
Cyndi was one of the Initiators to raise over $110,000 for the Iowa Cares: Asian Tsunami Disaster Fund in year 2004. She is the past President of Asian American Council who led the Council to merge with Iowa Asian Alliance. She is also the immediate past president of Iowa Sister States to link Iowans to the world through working with 500 or more volunteers on eight Sister States relationship.
She was appointed by the Governor to serve on the Asian and Pacific Islander Advisory Council to push the establishment of commission of Asian and Pacific Islander from 2001 to 2004. She has been appointed by the Governor again to serve on the Commission on the Status of Iowans of Asian and Pacific Islander Heritage ( She was elected to be the first chair of the Commission for 2004-2006 and led the efforts to develop a strategic plan and successfully lobbied the state appropriation so the Commission would be able to hire an administrator.
Besides the Commission, Cyndi also serves on the board of Iowa Asian Alliance and Neighborhood Finance Corporation; as an advisor of Chinese Association of Iowa, Iowa Chinese Language School, Center for Global Citizenship of Drake University, Multicultural Outreach Committee of Grand View College, and Diversity Committee Mercy College of Health Sciences.
Cyndi and her husband Dr. Frank Affannato who is a retired college professor have "adopted" many families and strangers.
Cyndi has received many awards and honors: Governor's Golden Dome Employee Award -- Lt. Governor's Volunteer Award (2004 & 2001), AdmirAsian Volunteer Award (2003), and Iowa Governor's Volunteer Award (2001), Excellent Teacher Award from National Institute for Staff And Organization Development (1996), etc.
Cyndi has bachelor's degrees in Economics, Mathematics and Computer Science; Master's degree in Mathematics; and has completed her doctorate coursework in Adult and Higher Education Administration.
Iowa Council for International Understanding, 24 April 2010 [cached]
Cyndi Chen
Iowa Department of Human Rights
Iowa Sister States, 29 May 2010 [cached]
Cyndi Chen
"Usually we don't go to see ..., 13 May 2006 [cached]
"Usually we don't go to see the doctors until we get sick," said Cyndi Chen, chairwoman of the Commission on the Status of Iowans of Asian and Pacific Islander Heritage.
A University of Northern Iowa report about the health disparities in Iowa found that language is a "significant limitation" Asians face in getting the health care they need.
Le, who came to the United States from Vietnam in 1972, said he has acted as an impromptu interpreter for other elderly Asians while at his own medical appointments.
"Health care providers need to learn more about Asian cultures," Chen said.
More than half of the 7 million Asians in the nation rated their ability to speak English as worse than "very well," according to the 2000 census.
In Iowa, about 5.8 percent of Iowans, or 160,022 people, speak a language other than English at home.About 2.5 percent, or 68,108 people, reported they spoke English worse than "very well," according to the census.
Chen said little data exists on the health concerns of Asians in Iowa.
"We don't have data available that's Asian specific," Chen said.
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