Can’t Attend the 2018 Gala Dinner? Show Your Support Anyway!

JANM’s 2018 Gala Dinner is just a few days away, on April 21. Even if you’re not able to attend in person, you can still support an important JANM initiative that is the focus of a portion of the evening: the Bid for Education.

JANM’s Bid for Education program was officially launched at the 2000 Gala Dinner by the late US Senator Daniel K. Inouye in response to state budget cuts that threatened bus transportation for school field trips. Since then, it has become a galvanizing force behind the museum’s School Visits program, making field trips to JANM possible for more than 12,000 primary and secondary school students and teachers every year.

Funds raised by the Bid for Education are earmarked to support bus transportation and museum admission for primary and secondary school students from Title I schools and groups who have demonstrated financial need. Both school buses and public transportation are eligible for funding. Bid for Education funds also support K–12 educator workshops, the development of free resources for educators, docent recruitment and training, and many other educational initiatives.

3rd-grade-students-visit
Bid for Education funds support bus transportation to JANM for primary and secondary school students, like these third-graders. Photo by Gary Ono.

One teacher from Bell Gardens, California, recently shared this with us: “As a Title I school with financial need, your grants have provided us with the opportunity to coordinate a field trip to such a worthwhile institution, which provides our students with an invaluable cultural experience.”

mas-yamashita-tour
The Bid for Education allows students to have docent-led tours of JANM’s Common Ground exhibition, like this one led by volunteer Mas Yamashita. Photo by Tracy Kumono.

Another educator, from Lynwood, California, said, “We thank JANM for the generous Bid for Education scholarship that made our great day possible. We wish you continued success in your mission to educate, enlighten, and inspire.”

Bid for Education receives much of its funding during the annual Gala Dinner, but donations can be made at any time. If you won’t be with us at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel and Suites this Saturday, please consider making a gift online now. Support at any level is greatly appreciated!

JANM’s Biggest Annual Event is Just Around the Corner

2016-Gala-Dinner-header-600px

On March 19, JANM will hold its annual Gala Dinner, Silent Auction, and After Party at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel and Suites in Los Angeles. A lavish affair that typically attracts over 1,000 guests, this event raises crucial funds that support the museum’s operations throughout the year.

The theme of this year’s dinner is “Moving Images, Telling Stories.” Those who know JANM for its exhibitions exploring various facets of the Japanese American experience, from the World War II incarceration to Hello Kitty and Giant Robot, may not be aware that the museum is home to a groundbreaking collection of home movies and video life histories—the former dating back to the Issei of the early 20th century.

Representing rare footage of Japanese American life taken by Japanese Americans, the home movies are a glimpse back in time, providing an invaluable counterpoint to mainstream media in which Asians were either absent or portrayed unfavorably. The video life histories are in-depth interviews conducted by JANM with a diverse spectrum of Japanese Americans, recording the lives of Japanese Americans in their own words. These compelling first-person resources have helped to portray the Japanese American story as an integral part of the broader American narrative.

Karen L. Ishizuka and Robert A. Nakamura
Karen L. Ishizuka and Robert A. Nakamura

 

This year’s dinner will honor Karen L. Ishizuka and Robert A. Nakamura, who pioneered the museum’s moving image collection and founded its Frank H. Watase Media Arts Center. Nakamura is also a seminal Asian American filmmaker, having made some of the first films by and about Asian Americans. Ishizuka was instrumental in advocating for the historical and cultural significance of home movies, lobbying successfully for the inclusion of amateur footage shot at the Topaz, Utah, concentration camp during World War II on the National Film Registry. Together, Ishizuka and Nakamura will receive the inaugural JANM Legacy Award, established to recognize individuals and organizations that have made a lasting contribution to the museum’s institutional legacy and helped to distinguish the museum as a unique, vital, and valuable community resource.

Ken Burns. Photo by Cable Risdon.
Ken Burns. Photo by Cable Risdon.

 

Also honored will be the acclaimed documentary filmmaker Ken Burns, who has made significant use of JANM’s home movies and other archival materials in three of his highly popular historical sagas, bringing the museum’s resources to a broad national audience. Burns will receive the inaugural JANM Founders’ Award, established to recognize an individual or organization that advances the mission and vision of the museum’s founders in a meaningful way on a national or international scale.

Please visit our newly revamped Gala Dinner website for complete details and to purchase tickets. We hope you can join us for what promises to be a very exciting evening.

2014 Gala Dinner Thanks!

Jamie Hagiya, Wat Misaka, and Natalie Nakase at the 2014 Gala Dinner. Photo by Tracy Kumono.
Jamie Hagiya, Wat Misaka, and Natalie Nakase at the 2014 Gala Dinner, Silent Auction & After Party. Photo by Tracy Kumono.

 

Thank you to everyone who supported our 2014 Gala Dinner, Silent Auction & After Party on April 12!

The Gala is our biggest fundraising event of the year, and the funds raised allow us to continue the important work that we do. To the many people who attended the Gala, donated and bid on silent auction gifts, purchased Lexus Opportunity Drawing tickets, made Bid For Education gifts and more, we extend our deepest gratitude for your support.

One of our photographers, Tracy Kumono, produced a short slide show of the evening’s highlights, which she has graciously allowed us to share with you.

View the slideshow >>

She also has the complete set of Gala photos (more than 650) on her website, and you can order individual prints from her directly. You will need to provide your name and email address to enter the gallery and order prints.

View more photos and order prints >>

In addition, we are pleased to announce that the winner of this year’s Lexus Opportunity Drawing is Craig Tomiyoshi of Huntington Beach, California. He will pick up his brand new 2015 Lexus RC F in the fall.

We are interested in hearing your comments about the evening. If you’d like to share your thoughts, please send an email to galadinner@janm.org.

Once again, thank you for your support. We hope to see you next year!

 

Photos by Tracy Kumono, Nobuyuki Okada, Daryl Kobayashi, and Russell Kitagawa.

Save the Date: JANM 2014 Gala Dinner

2014 Gala Dinner - Evolving Pastimes

It’s time again for JANM’s annual Gala Dinner! This year’s theme is Evolving Pastimes: Connecting Communities & Generations through Sports. It will be an evening of enlightening stories of history-making men and women who took sports beyond play to inspire, unite, elevate, and shape Japanese Americans.

We will celebrate athletes and sports personalities who not only made an impact at the highest levels of competition but helped forge enduring bonds—from the Nisei who sought normalcy through during the dark days of camp through sports like football, baseball, and basketball to the phenomenal growth of Japanese American leagues after the war.

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Photo by Tracy Kumono

 

When: Saturday, April 12, 2014

Where: Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel
2025 Avenue of the Stars
Los Angeles, CA 90067

5PM – Silent Auction & Seafood Reception
7PM – Gala Dinner & Program
9:30PM – After Party

For more information about the Gala, please visit the 2014 Gala Dinner page: janm.org/dinner2014.

2012 Gala Dinner & After Party photos

Thank you to everyone who supported our 2012 Gala Dinner & Silent Auction!

Here are a few photos from the Gala Dinner and the After Party, plus links to a LOT more photos from the night.

Yosh Uchida, Deni & Norman Mineta, and Gordon Yamate
Yosh Uchida, Deni & Norman Mineta, and Gordon Yamate

One of our volunteer photographers, Tracy Kumono, has produced a short slide show of the evening’s highlights, which she has graciously allowed us to share with everyone.

JANM President/CEO G.W. Kimura with Tomoshige Mizutani

View the slideshow >>

She also has the complete set of photos (750+) on her website, from which you can order individual prints. You will need to enter your name and email address to enter the gallery and order prints directly from her.

View the Dinner photos and order prints >>

Kaji Family

Wyatt Conlon was our “Red Carpet” and “After Party” photographer. He has put an album together. You can order prints directly from him as well. If you would like to order individual prints, simply enter the code word “gala” to receive a 20% discount off your purchase.

View the Red Carpet and After Party photos >>

We are interested in hearing your comments of the evening. If you’d like to share your thoughts, please send us an email to specialevents@janm.org.

Thank you!

John, Josh, and Jack Morey
T. Candice Nakagawa, George Tanaka, and Guest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photos by Tracy Kumono & Wyatt Conlon
2012 Gala Dinner After Party

2012 Gala Dinner this Saturday!

Our 2012 Gala Dinner & Silent Auction is just 2 days away!!!

Staff, volunteers, and leadership are busy with the many, many final preparations for the big event. This is our biggest fundraiser of the year where we raise much of our annual operating funds. It’s also a great event to attend!

Here’s a preview of what we have planned for this Saturday night at the JW Marriott at L.A. Live:

2012 Silent Auction catalogAn incredible Silent Auction jam-packed with all kinds of great packages in 8 sections (Art, Buy-It-Now, Entertainment, Food & Wine, Luxury, Sports, Travel, and Treasures). You can get a sneak peek by downloading the Silent Auction Catalog. The Silent Auction is open during our yummy Seafood Reception hosted by American Fish & Seafood Co. and Sumitomo Corporation of America.

Our Gala Dinner & Program theme this year is Transforming a Forgotten Story, and will highlight the evolution of the Japanese American World War II story from almost forgotten to being shared internationally today. We will be presenting former Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta with our Distinguished Medal of Honor for Lifetime Achievement and Public Service.

The program will also include Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston, author of Farewell to Manzanar and filmmaker John Korty who was the director of the made-for-TV film based on the book. Plus, a song from George Takei’s upcoming musical Allegiance will be performed!

2013 Lexus GS 450hWe will also be drawing the winner of the Lexus Opportunity Drawing where a lucky person will win a 2013 Lexus GS 450h, and a live Bid for Education where we raise money that provides free admission and buses for many school groups to visit throughout the year and learn about the Japanese American experience.

2012 Gala Dinner After PartyBut that’s not all! Our Young Professionals Network is hosting an After Party! It’s free for Gala Dinner guests, or $20 for JANM Members / $25 for non-members. Download the flyer for more details.

Check janm.org/dinner2012 for more details!

 

 

 

 

Save the Date: 2012 Gala Dinner

We’ve already begun planning for next year’s Gala Dinner!

The 2012 Gala Dinner is set for Saturday, May 5. We’ll be back at the JW Mariott Hotel at L.A. Live.

Our staff is currently working to finalize ticket & sponsorship opportunities, so stay tuned for more info.

In the meantime, we’re excited to announce that Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. will once again be providing a Lexus for our Lexus Opportunity Drawing! This time, you’ll be able to win an all-new 2013 Lexus GS 450h hybrid!

The model is being redesigned for 2013. For those who know something about cars (not me!), it’s the world’s first premium performance sedan to be equipped with a V6 Atkinson cycle gas engine and two-motor hybrid system, in a front engine rear-wheel drive vehicle.

For a chance to win, tickets are $25 each, or 5 for $100 (buy 4, get 1 free!). For details, download the flier/form below.

Download the Opportunity Drawing form (PDF) >>

2013 Lexus GS 450h

Stan Sakai: The Cartoonist

Stan & Sharon Sakai at the 2011 Japanese American National Museum Gala Dinner

We recently honored cartoonist Stan Sakai at our 2011 Gala Dinner where he was awarded the Cultural Ambassador Award.For those of you who are not familiar with his work, he’s best known for his iconic character, Usagi Yojimbo—a samurai rabbit in feudal Japan, which he created in 1984.

His comic books have been translated into a dozen languages and in Empire magazine’s list of greatest comic book characters of all time, Usagi Yojimbo placed 31st, ahead of Green Lantern, Daredevil, and Hellboy!

We’re also working with Stan on a retrospective exhibition of his work that opens on July 9. Our award-winning Watase Media Arts Center staff is working on a short documentary to accompany the exhibition. Last summer they went to the Comicon in San Diego where they interviewed some of his fellow cartoonists who all agreed that he’s one of the nicest guys in the business. After meeting him, we all agree and can’t wait for his exhibition!

Chris Komai, the Public Information Officer at JANM, wrote an article about Stan for the Gala Dinner journal. It’s now online on our Discover Nikkei site:

Stan Sakai: The Cartoonist
by Chris Komai
Read the article >>

For more info about the upcoming exhibition:

Year of the Rabbit: Stan Sakai’s Usagi Yojimbo
July 9 through October 30, 2011
Learn more about this exhibition >>

Stan Sakai drawing Usagi Yojimbo on stage at the 2011 Gala Dinner. Photos by Tracy Kumono.