GFBNEC 2020 Evening of Aloha Virtual Gala to Showcase Two New Veteran Recognition Opportunities

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Portraits of Nisei veterans, such as MIS veteran Ken Akune, will be featured in the Go For Broke virtual gala.

Go For Broke National Education Center (GFBNEC) is scheduled to present a livestream broadcast of its 19th annual Evening of Aloha Virtual Gala (EOA) on Saturday, Nov. 14, from 4 to 5 p.m. PST (1 to 2 p.m. HST).

In keeping with the spirit of community, family and sharing of stories, the annual gala will incorporate the unique traditions of EOA, honoring the Nisei veterans of WWII, while keeping the safety of our communities top of mind.

Why “aloha”? From the islands of Hawai’i to the mainland’s Japanese American concentration camps, the young Americans of Japanese ancestry from the 100th Infantry Battalion, 442nd Regimental Combat Team and Military Intelligence Service faced WWII together with shared values and cultural understandings. The Hawaiian spirit of “aloha” illustrates the values of kindness, unity, humility, and perseverance. In the context of relationships, it is how each person is an important piece of the collective existence.

“We anticipate the largest viewing audience ever for this year’s gala. During the current pandemic, we have made tremendous strides in broadening our online presence,” said Mitch Maki, GFBNEC president and CEO. “From the over 10,000 Monument Anniversary Tribute viewers this past June to our recent virtual public programming viewed by thousands, this gala will illustrate further that the Nisei veterans experience is a compelling American story with relevance and significance to today.”

Hosted live by Maki and David Ono, ABC7 Eyewitness News anchor and member of the GFBNEC Board of Directors, this EOA will retain all the celebratory hallmarks that make this event a true community highlight. New to the event this year, GFBNEC will present two unique veteran recognition opportunities.

The first, Living Nisei WWII Photo Tribute, will replicate one of the event’s most treasured moments — live recognition of veterans onstage. This year, GFBNEC has expanded the opportunity to all Nisei veteran organizations nationwide, allowing families and organizations to submit an in-service military and a current photo of living Nisei WWII veterans. All veteran photos will be displayed during the EOA program. To participate, visit GFBNEC’s website for more information. Deadline for free submission of photos is Friday, Oct. 30.

The second opportunity is a special Thank a Veteran pre-show digital ad sponsorship, which can be purchased on GFBNEC’s website and must be submitted by Oct. 30. Benefits include having an honoree’s photo and donor message scrolled during the event pre-show; photo and tribute posted on GFBNEC’s Facebook page and on www.goforbroke.org; and honoree’s photo included in an Evening of Aloha wrap up e-blast.

Proceeds from this event will directly support GFBNEC’s new educational initiatives, including its expanded national outreach, enhanced online and social media presence, and dynamic online programming to engage younger, more diverse audiences.  For more information on how to support GFBNEC and EOA, visit www.goforbroke.org, email [email protected], or call (310) 328-0907.

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