About Us

The Russian American Youth Alliance (RAYA) is a student-led organization dedicated to building a network of young adults from Russia and the United States to foster bilateral discourse about culture, language, and politics. In our current unsteady political climate — one full of misunderstanding and animosity — we aspire to bridge the gap on a path to mutual understanding and cooperation. We hope to cultivate an environment where our members can immerse themselves in the culture of both countries and build long-lasting friendships and ties. The RAYA has the following goals:

  • Provide our members with the opportunity to express their views about American and Russian politics and their cultural insights through our online news network. 

  • Establish online forums and chats that encourage bilateral discussion about the culture, language, and politics of both nations.

  • Provide our Russian members a deeper understanding of American political systems, culture, traditions, domestic issues, and outlook on foreign policy. 

  • Allow American members to achieve a more comprehensive insight into contemporary and historical Russian political systems, culture, traditions, domestic issues, and foreign policy. 

  • Run social media accounts to post content about Russian/American culture to bring the two cultures closer together on the path to mutual understanding.

  • Host speakers who will discuss Russian-American political relations to resolve misconceptions and foster conversation about these pressing issues. 

  • Partner with politicians involved in Russian-American relations, programs dedicated to providing linguistic and cultural awareness, and other cultural immersion organizations.  

Meet the Team

Leaders of the RAYA

Ivan Sinyavin

 Co-Founder and Director


Yulia Leberfarb

Co-Founder and Director

Elena Hlamenko

Event Coordinator




Social Media Director


Parv Aggarwal

U.S. - Russia Relations Director / Legal Advisor