ATA member profiles are unedited, and the views, thoughts, and opinions expressed belong solely to the author, and not necessarily to Austin Tech Alliance, the author’s employer, organization, committee or other group or individual.

During the month of June, ATA is highlighting LGBTQIA+ employees of membership organizations who support our mission of promoting civic engagement in Austin’s tech sector. Up this week: Minh Vu.

Minh is the Program Manager at Capital Factory in Austin, Texas where he leads and develops strategy and programming to support entrepreneurs and tech professionals. A native Texan, Minh was born to refugee parents in West Texas and raised in Central Texas. At an early age, he quickly learned how to navigate white and heteronormative spaces while finding refuge in television and art. His passion for storytelling and giving back fueled his education and career path.

In turn, he’s become a resourceful and empathetic communicator and storyteller with years of experience driving complex, diverse and inclusive projects from ideation to execution with minimal guidance. He has a proven ability to be adaptive in evolving, fast-paced environments – from corporate to startups – and improve cross-functional team collaboration in order to achieve impactful results.

Prior to joining Capital Factory, he led marketing on behalf of the State of Texas to promote the state as a premier production destination for the media production industries. After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin, he was heavily involved in the film and television industry in Los Angeles at NBCUniversal supporting teams in Events, Publicity and Programming.

What does Pride mean to you?

Pride is a celebration and an encouragement of love, unabashed authenticity and perseverance. It’s a time to remember the Black and Brown trailblazers like Marsha P. JohnsonStormé DeLarverie, Sylvia Rivera and more who chose to live their truth despite any fear or hardships that may have come their way. They started a movement for LGBTQ+ rights at Stonewall that brought us to much of the progress we’ve arrived at today. While we’ve made strides, there is still much more to be done and Pride is a humbling reminder to keep the fight alive.

How are you celebrating Pride this year?

Each year, I choose to celebrate Pride by continuing to live as authentically and as true to myself as I can, attending a pride parade, and also committing to learn more about the history of our entire community. With the magnitude of current events sweeping the world, I encourage the support and engagement with local LGBTQ+ groups such as allgoAustin Black Pride, and more as they continue to provide resources for our community through these times.

Why is civic engagement important to you?

It’s important to have our voices heard and reflected in the local leaders, policies and practices in our community. Being civically engaged is one of the most important ways to be able to put that into action.

Can you share some of your LGBTQ+ role models?

This one is tough! There are notable allies who have made a huge influence on my life with their outspoken support of the LGBTQ+ community — Christina Aguilera comes to mind — especially her 2003 “Beautiful” music video. But keeping on the musician train, Janelle Monáe‘s effortless vibe and artistry is awe-inspiring. James Baldwin is also a force to have been reckoned with and his work speaks for itself. Lately, I’ve been reading Ocean Vuong’s “On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous,” and as a gay Vietnamese American, it’s been incredible to see that representation reflected.