The Center for Asian Health Equity (CAHE) was established in 2015 in response to the unmet health needs of the diverse Asian American communities living in the Chicago metropolitan area. CAHE is a unique academic and community partnership between the University of Chicago and Asian Health Coalition (AHC), a community-based organization dedicated to the study of primarily Asian American health and disparities. The Center takes a multidisciplinary, collaborative approach to addressing gaps in clinical medicine and public health through a comprehensive program for research, health education, training, community engagement, policy, and information dissemination. CAHE is the first center in the Midwest region housed within a university environment, and one of only four in the nation.

The absence of any Asian health research centers in the Midwest coupled with the highest Asian American population growth rate in Illinois provides an immediate opportunity to capitalize on the depth of the University’s institutional reach, and create an infrastructure to address the gap in this body of scholarship and build community partnerships. CAHE’s foundation is built on more than 20 years of community health and prevention work through the AHC, which has an extended network of over 25 diverse ethnic community-based organizations across Chicago. Concurrently, the Coalition leverages on the Center’s expertise to conduct health disparities and research, and provide clinical care and advocacy for low-income Asian immigrants and other communities of color.


Highlighted Work

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Our Team 

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Dr. Karen Kim, MS, MD | Center Director

Professor of Medicine, the Dean of Faculty Affairs for the Division of Biological Sciences, the Associate Director at the University of Chicago Medicine Comprehensive Cancer Center - Office of Community Engagement and Cancer Disparities, and an faculty affiliate at the Center for the Study of Race, Culture and Politics and Center for Gender Studies.


Fornessa Randal, MCRP | Executive Director

More than 20 years of experience in community-academic partnerships, health systems innovation, and minority health planning. Her background extends to cancer and health disparities research, public health, outreach and administrative leadership. Recognized both locally and nationally for her innovative approach to program design and implementation.


UChicago Researchers

Our affiliated researchers from the University of Chicago specialized in and represent various disciplines, including medicine, public health, policy, social sciences, psychology, and information technology.