Sera Koulabdara (Sa-rah Goo-lap-dah lah) serves as Executive Director of Legacies of War, the only international U.S.-based advocacy and educational organization working to address the impacts of the American Secret War in Laos and conflict in its neighboring countries of Cambodia and Vietnam during the Vietnam War-era. This includes the removal of unexploded ordnance (UXO) and victims/survivor assistance. In this episode, Sera discusses this part of our joint history as Americans that isn’t taught or talked about.
Under Sera’s leadership, US funding for UXO clearance in Laos reached $45M – the highest level in history and the Legacies of War Recognition and UXO Removal Act was introduced by Senator Baldwin (D-WI). If approved, this historic bill authorizes landmark funding of $500M over 5 years divided among the 3 countries of Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. Legacies of War also received the inaugural Humanitarian Award of 2022 given by the Lao PDR for its successful advocacy efforts in securing funds for bomb removal and victims assistance.
Sera is a proud Buckeye and received her undergraduate degree from THE Ohio State University.