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

Founder and Director


Yulia Leberfarb

Founder and Director

Elena Hlamenko

Event Coordinator




Social Media Director


Parv Aggarwal

U.S. - Russia Relations Director / Legal Advisor