This past weekend, the Japanese American Citizens League concluded two weeks of virtual proceedings in place of an in-person National Convention to elect a new National Board for the next biennium.

Jeffrey Moy (Photo by Gil Asakawa)

In addition, two individuals received the Japanese American of the Biennium Award and a chapter was given the George J. Inagaki Chapter Citizenship Award.

“While the onset of a pandemic has forced all of us to change the ways in which we work, we are glad to see many officers returning and hope to recognize awardees at our 2021 convention,” the JACL said in a statement.

The following candidates have been elected or re-elected to the JACL National Board for the next biennium:

• Jeffrey Moy as national president

• Sarah Baker as vice president of public affairs

• Marissa Kitazawa as vice president of general operations

• Mieko Kuramoto as National Youth/Student Council representative

• Justin Kawaguchi as NY/SC Council chair

The remaining board positions will be appointed by President Moy over the next several months.

Along with the National Board elections, the following awardees were named:

Lori Matsukawa

For Japanese American of the Biennium in the areas of arts, literature, and communication: Long-time broadcast journalist Lori Matsukawa was nominated by the Seattle Chapter and awarded for her many years of work in the communications field in the Pacific Northwest, including working on a documentary series on Japanese American incarceration.

For Japanese American of the Biennium in the areas of politics, public affairs, and law: Lisa Bartlett Sato was nominated by the Pacific Southwest District and awarded for her years of public service, serving Orange County for over a decade. Currently, she serves on the Orange County Board of Supervisors while also holding a seat on multiple other state and county boards.

Lisa Bartlett

For the George J. Inagaki Chapter Citizenship Award: The Seattle Chapter was awarded for their tireless work over the last biennium. Particularly in the fields of youth leadership development, API LGBTQ conversations, mixed-race workshops, JA legacy programs, outreach to other POC communities, scholarships, and much more.

“We will be formally awarding the awardees at the 2021 National Convention,” the JACL said. “On behalf of the JACL national staff, we want to congratulate the incoming National Board and awardees for all their work and contributions to the JA community.”

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