SAN JOSE — The Japanese American Museum of San Jose has named James Nagareda as its first-ever executive director.

James Nagareda

Nagareda will provide overarching leadership and management of the museum, while working closely with the board of directors and volunteers. In this role, he will further develop the JAMsj volunteer corps and will participate in fundraising, marketing, development of strategic vision, collection development, general management, and financial management. He will collaborate with community organizations and volunteers to enhance and communicate the museum’s vision.

JAMsj Board President Aggie Idemoto, who led the executive director search, said, “We are fortunate to have a leader who has served in the San Jose Japantown community for more than 25 years. We are definitely in good hands.”

Similarly, as JAMsj’s executive director, Nagareda will put his expertise to use in cultivating relationships among volunteers and major stakeholders. His finance background will also positively impact the museum’s fundraising efforts, including special projects, operations and the development of the museum collection.

As an avid community volunteer, Nagareda brings an energetic spirit to JAMsj events and programs. For example, he dedicated many hours as project manager to the production of the book “San Jose Japantown — A Journey.” As a business owner in Japantown, he brings a wealth of business development and management experience to JAMsj.

Additionally, Nagareda was a founding board member of the Japanese American Chamber of Commerce and served as a three-year president of the West Valley JACL Next Generation.

JAMsj collects, preserves and shares Japanese American history, art and culture with an emphasis on the greater Bay Area. The museum is located at 535 N. Fifth St. in San Joe Japantown. For more information, visit

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