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Weekly Digest
February 9, 2021


COVID-19 and JACL operations and resources

JACL's physical offices remain closed. Staff continue to do the work of the organization remotely.  Please direct all phone calls to our Washington, D.C. Office at (202) 223-1240 and we will get back to you as quickly as possible. Otherwise, we will all be available via email. All staff emails can be found HERE. You can also check our website, jacl.org, for updates and COVID-19 resources. You can view our resources page here. 

Stay safe everyone and we hope to see you all in person again soon. 

- JACL National Staff


2021 JACL National Convention Announcement

Due to the ongoing safety issues presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, the JACL National Board has decided to postpone a physical convention until at least the Summer of 2022. In the interim, JACL National will be conducting a virtual convention hosted this coming summer, July 15-18, 2021. The virtual convention will include National Council sessions, as well as the usual breakout sessions and workshops that are hosted during convention. More information around the virtual convention and registration will be announced soon!


JACL 2021 Legacy Fund Grant Announcement

The JACL Legacy Fund Grants Committee is pleased to announce that applications are now being accepted for 2021 Legacy Fund grants. The LFG Co-Chairs, Roberta Barton, and Toshi Abe encourage JACL chapters in good standing and JACL District Councils to apply. This year, the maximum grant award is $6,000. 

Legacy Fund grants will be awarded for projects and activities that support the mission of JACL and are supportive of the National JACL Strategic Plan. Instructions and application forms may be downloaded from the National JACL’s website at https://jacl.org/legacy-fund-grants/ and submissions for grants must be received by May 1, 2021.

The Legacy Fund was established by the JACL National Council at the 1990 JACL National Convention in San Diego. Much of the original funds were donated by JACL members who gave portions of their redress awards to further the legacy of the JACL. Each year, a portion of the earnings from the Legacy Fund Endowment provides the funds to run the LFG program. 

For questions or additional information, please contact the co-chairs, Roberta Barton (rbarton4106@comcast.net) and Toshi Abe (tabe@jacl.org). Completed applications are due by May 1, 2021. Grant award recipients will be announced at the JACL National Convention.


Immigrant Families Are Essential Statement


Looking for Testimony in Support of HR 40

The House Judiciary Subcommittee on Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties hearing will be held on Wednesday, February 17th, 2021 at 10am EST/7am PST. 


National Veterans Network NextGen Series Finale - Terry Nakanishi

Join the National Veterans Network on Saturday February 13 at 11:00am HT, 1:00pm PT, 2:00pm MT, 3:00pm CT, 4:00pm ET for the third episode of NVN NextGen: A conversational virtual series where the next generation of Japanese Americans learn about their World War II heritage through historical objects. This 15-minute episode features two 7th grade students from Hawaii and Washington discussing Terry Nakanishi’s service in the Women's Army Corps with Paul Morando, Chief of Exhibits at the National Museum of the United States Army.

Throughout their conversation, the students learn about Terry’s life story and ask questions to better understand the significance of Terry’s service during World War II. Tracy Bradford, Director of the U.S. Army Women's  Museum will also provide remarks about the contributions of women in the U.S. Army. 


Book Talk with Professor David M. Forman

Join Honolulu JACL Member and Professor at the William S. Richardson School of Law at the University of Hawai'i at Manoa, David Forman, for the launch of his new book: Legal Actions for Future Generations. The event will be free, with no RSVP necessary! You can join using the login information here! 

Join Zoom Meeting:


Passcode:  DavidF


2021 JACL National Day of Remembrance Event and DOR Event Listings

JACL National will once again be co-sponsoring a Day of Remembrance event with the Smithsonian Institute's Museum of American History titled FACEism: A panel discussion of history and accountability. The event will be hosted by Modupe Labode, Curator and Public Historian, Smithsonian, National Museum of American History. Panelists will include JACL National Fellows, Matthew Weisbly and Cheyenne Cheng, ABC7 Anchor and FACEism host, David Ono, and President and CEO of JANM, Ann Burroughs. The event will be streamed online, Friday, February 19th at 6pm EST/3pm PST. 

JACL is also looking to compile a list of all of the Day of Remembrance Events coming up around the country for members and their communities to be able to search for events near them. If you have any DOR events in your city or know of any, please email our Policy Fellow, Matthew Weisbly, at mweisbly@jacl.org with details for the event! We'll start posting a list of dates, times, and locations online and here in the digest starting next week! 


JACL Organizational Sign Ons




JACL National 2021 Scholarship Program -

1 month left for Freshman Apps!


WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) announced that the 2021 National Scholarship and Awards Program is now underway.  The JACL annually offers approximately 30 college scholarships for students who are incoming college freshmen, undergraduates and graduates, and those specializing in law and the creative/performing arts. There are also financial aid scholarships for those demonstrating a need for financial assistance.  

Scholarship Program guidelines, instructions, and applications have been posted on the JACL website, www.jacl.org, and can be accessed by clicking the “Youth” tab on the menu bar. You may also click the button below “To Learn More or Apply Click Here.”

Starting this year, the application forms for the scholarship program will be completely online. Freshman applications must be submitted directly by the applicant to National JACL through the online form no later than March 1, 2021, 11:59 p.m. Hawaiian Standard Time (HST).  

Applications for the non-freshman scholarship categories (undergraduate, graduate, law, creative/performing arts, and financial aid) are also to be sent directly by the applicant to National JACL through the online form no later than April 1, 2021, 11:59 p.m. Hawaiian Standard Time (HST).  

For more information on the National JACL Scholarship Program, contact Scholarship Program Manager Matthew Weisbly at scholarships@jacl.org.


JACL Promotes Program Director and We're Hiring!

Click the pencil icon above to replace this temporary copy. When you add the content for this text block, make sure it's personal, informational, emotional, and actionable. That's how to ignite change!

JACL is pleased to announce the promotion of Phillip Ozaki to Program Director - Membership and Fund Development. Phillip has served on staff for a cumulative four years including as Membership Coordinator and Norman Y. Mineta Fellow. He has extensive fundraising experience and is a founding board member of the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance. Phillip also brings work experience at several tech companies and an MBA from ESADE Business School in Spain.

Phillip writes to Digest readers: “First of all, I’m proud to announce that membership revenue grew in 2020 - thank you! We could not have done that without you! I’m honored to take on this challenging new role to carry on my Grandparents’ legacy and because we all know that JACL has a lot to offer. It’s time to engage new funding partners to reinvigorate current programs and innovate new ones. If you’re interested in joining a fundraising initiative, please reach out to me at pozaki@jacl.org.”

JACL is now hiring for a Membership Coordinator. Phillip says, “It’s a great time to work in the movement for social justice and in the Japanese American community. Plus, you get to work with our awesome volunteers (and youth) while developing highly sought fundraising skills.”

Please feel free to forward the position widely. 
View the full Membership Coordinator job posting at here or the PDF here.


"Black + Japanese Reparations" Virtual Event Series and Book Club


Help find a Bone Marrow Match for

Paul and Kazumi!


2021 Minoru Yasui Student Contest

“If there is suffering or pain that is unfairly imposed upon anyone, it’s my duty, it’s your duty to try to alleviate it because that’s the way in which we gain a better life for all of us.” — Minoru Yasui 

The Minoru Yasui Student Contest is proud to announce its 2021 essay competition on Refugee and Immigrant Experiences.  We celebrate the ideas and opinions of students in grades 6 through 12 and challenge them to write an original and thoughtful essay exploring refugee or immigrant experiences. Their essay should also demonstrate an understanding of the life and legacy of Minoru Yasui, who spent over 40 years as a dedicated leader serving diverse and often marginalized communities. 

Students are encouraged to research and share meaningful stories about the conditions, challenges, and support experienced by immigrants and refugees coming to the United States. At the same time, we hope to inspire the next generation of leaders who can embrace complex issues as Min Yasui did - with courage, agility, and thoughtfulness.

For more information on contest details, please go to the Minoru Yasui Legacy Project website:  minoruyasuilegacy.org/student-contest.  

Here’s what you need to know:

Other resources include:

  • For curriculum, logistics, and educational resources related to the life and legacy of Minoru Yasui and primary sources about Oregon’s Nikkei community, please contact Jennifer Fang at jennifer@oregonnikkei.org 

  • For student experience and research guidance, please contact Alan Zhou at alanzhou2018@gmail.com  or Kyler Wang at kyler.y.wang@gmail.com


Join Us in Support of H.R. 40

JACL Executive Director, David Inoue, discusses JACL’s support of H.R. 40. H.R. 40 would create a commission to examine the institution of slavery, its legacy, and make recommendations to Congress for reparations, beginning a process of repairing and restoring after centuries of enslavement. Click the image above to watch the full video statement. 


Hate Crime Resources 

We've updated our Hate Crimes Page to include more information and reporting options for members of the community as hate crimes increase as a result of COVID-19. You can visit the updated page here. 


Follow JACL on:


JACL Headquarters
1765 Sutter Street
San Francisco, California 94115
(415) 921-5225 | mbr@jacl.org

JACL DC Office
1629 K Street NW, Suite 400
Washington, D.C. 20006
(202) 223-1240 | policy@jacl.org

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