Mom Portrait

Sida Lei

Sida Lei was born in Cambodia in 1965. She survived as an orphan during the 1975-1979 Khmer Rouge holocaust. Against all odds, she led her siblings in a daring escape to Thailand in 1979. After living in refugee camps for two years, Sida and her siblings were granted visas, sponsored by Saint Margaret Mary Church in Rochester, New York. Ms. Lei graduated from the University at Buffalo with a BS degree in Medical Technology, wanting a profession where she could give back and save lives. Ms. Lei is married and has three lovely children. She works as a clinical microbiologist for the Inova Health System in Virginia, performing tests for viruses and other organisms, like COVID-19.



Monica Boothe

A writer of both fiction and
nonfiction, Monica Boothe earned her MFA in
creative writing at George Mason
Univ. She lives in Maryland with her
husband, three children, and her cat. She
now works at Bowie State Univ.