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OCA and JACL Host Successful Leadership Summit
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OCA and JACL Host Successful Leadership Summit

16 March 2012

Lin Li | Director of Membership and Chapter Relations 
202 223 5500 |

Washington, DC – OCA, a national organization dedicated to advancing the social, political and economic well-being of Asian Pacific Americans (APAs) and in partnership with the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) hosted a successful JACL/OCA Leadership Summit which took place March 10-13 in the nation’s capital.

OCA co-convened with JACL in 1994 on this initiative to provide leadership development to chapter leaders across the country.  The JACL/OCA Leadership Summit brings in 30 participants from the JACL and OCA to attend a three-day intensive training in Washington, DC. During the training, participants from both organizations enhanced their leadership and coalition building skills by becoming familiar with the political process, while learning critical issues that affect the APA community. Participants also had the opportunity to meet with APA leaders in Congress, the Administration, and partners from the social justice community. 

"I am very pleased to co-produce this high impact program for the last 18 years through our continued partnership with JACL, as well as the faithful and generous support of State Farm,” said Tom Hayashi, OCA Executive Director.  "As a former participant myself, there is no substitute for hands-on experience in an array of civic engagement briefings, skills building sessions and networking for our accomplished and ardent advocates from all across the country…this is truly a unique program for APAs that bring folks from all walks of life for life changing, community building experience.”  

"State Farm is proud to be associated with the JACL/OCA Leadership Summit. Ensuring the continuity of leadership talent is essential for sustaining two outstanding civil rights organizations dedicated to the well-being of Asian Pacific Islander Americans.  We applaud participants’ sustained commitment to their communities and wish them every success,” said Leslie Moe-Kaiser, State Farm Public Affairs.

Participants for the 2012 JACL/OCA Leadership Summit were: Amy Watanabe (JACL-PSW), Cecilia Pham (OCA-Greater Houston),  Christopher Loo  (OCA-Hawaii), Curtis Suyematsu (JACL-PNW), Donna Hansen (JACL-IDC), Dora Quach (OCA-Greater Los Angeles), Elaine Akagi (JACL-PNW), Esther Choi (OCA-New York), Gary Chiu (OCA-Dallas-Fort Worth), Hanako Wakatsuki (JACL-IDC), Harvey Dam (OCA-Utah), Jacce Mikulanec (JACL-NCWNP), Jeffrey Wu (OCA-Greater Washington DC), Jessica Moy (JACL-IDC), Kelly Honda (JACL-NCWNP), Kenjiro Lecroix (JACL-MDW), Kevin Mori (OCA-Orange County), Laura Ng (JACL- EDC), Lily Li (OCA-Eastern Virginia), Lisa Drake (OCA-Las Vegas),  Lynn Longfellow (JACL-PNW), Marissa Kitazawa (JACL-PSW), Matthew Asada (JACL-EDC),  Renuka Mishra (OCA-Tucson), Shan Cong (OCA-Saint Louis), Stacy Matsuura (JACL-CCDC), Susie Wong (OCA-Sacramento), Teresa Chao (OCA-Georgia), Yoon Yim (OCA-Central Illinois), Yuka Ogino (JACL-PSW). They were deeply honored to have met with U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye, Tina Tchen, the Chief of Staff, Office of First Lady, Mark Keam, 39 District Delegate, Virginia House of Delegates, Bruce Yamashita, former Marine Officer, and many other inspirational leaders and speakers.

"The JACL/OCA Leadership Summit was an amazing opportunity to network with both new and veteran APIA community leaders…I gained further insight of our country’s federal government and opportunities to effectively advocate on behalf of our community,” stated Kevin Mori, 2012 participant (OCA-Orange County). "It has given me idea and knowledge that I hope to utilize and share on a local level with support from national leaders.”

This year’s JACL/OCA Leadership Summit has been generously supported by State Farm and Southwest Airlines. We are truly grateful for their commitment to building a strong and lasting legacy of community based leadership.
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