The Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA), an affiliate of the ALA (American Library Association), IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations Institutions), and JCLC (Joint Council of Librarians of Color), was founded in 1973. Currently, CALA has eight chapters: Greater Mid-Atlantic (GMA), Midwest Chapter (MW), Northeast Chapter (NE), Northern California Chapter (NCA), Southern California Chapter (SCA), Southeast Chapter (SE), Southwest Chapter (SW) and Canada Chapter.

The Southern California Chapter was founded in July 2006 when the CALA California Chapter was divided into two chapters of Northern California Chapter (NCA) and Southern California Chapter (SCA). The geographic division between the North and the South is by the line on Luis Obispo and Bakersfield of California. The chapter board, elected by chapter members, consists of the president, vice president/president-elect, membership chair, program chair, and immediate past president. The election takes place in May or June each year.