Roland Chai on Developing Connections and Fostering Cultural Respect

Roland Chai_AAPI_2022

In honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, we are featuring members and leaders of our Asian Professionals at Nasdaq (APAN) employee resource group (ERG) to learn more about their roles at Nasdaq, the impact they drive every day and how other groups can be allies to the Asian community at large. We spoke with Roland Chai, EVP of Market Infrastructure Technology at Nasdaq and APAN Adviser, about technology’s ability to connect us, and how those outside of the Asian American community can be allies.

Can you please tell us about your role at Nasdaq?

As EVP for Market Infrastructure Technology, I am leading the business unit that is responsible for delivering and supporting trading, clearing and risk technology to our clients around the world.

Why did you decide to join APAN? What will you hope to take away and bring to the community?

Having worked and lived in many different cultures, I firmly believe that fostering and celebrating diversity in background, culture and perspective is crucial to the success of an organization.

What does Asian American culture represent to you?

It represents many different people coming from a multitude of countries and languages. It basically represents over half of the world.

How can groups outside of the APAN network be allies to the Asian American community?

Developing common networks and fostering respect for cultural norms and heritage is the most important part of being an ally.

Who is an Asian American leader you admire and why? 

I would say Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, because he has taken a huge company and reinvented it.

How has your culture shaped how you view leadership and leadership values?

The ability to understand and leverage different perspectives across a diverse range of backgrounds is fundamental to keeping a healthy, balanced set of values and promoting collaboration.

How does working for a technology company advance collaboration in the AAPI community?

Technology is a great equalizer that extends over language and physical barriers and has enabled people and cultures across the world to develop closer ties.

What technology usage trends/habits do you see in the Asian-Pacific region that you have carried over to the U.S.?

Mobile technology and the greater utilization of networks and electronic payments.