MONTEREY PARK — The Monterey Park Japanese American Senior Citizens’ Club held its 41st annual installation of officers and New Year’s luncheon at the Quiet Cannon Restaurant in Montebello.
The mistress of ceremonies was Janis Uba and the invocation was given by Rev. Alfred Tsuyuki of Konko Church of Los Angeles.
President Bill Shishima honored board member Grace Kanada as the 2013 Volunteer of the Year.
“Ms. Kanada has been an active board member since 1998,” Shishima said. “As a board member, she was asked to be the club’s auditor. Many said that she is a very good, dedicated worker and a generous person. When our treasurer was hospitalized, without being asked, she did the treasurer’s duties very competently.
“Grace also volunteers regularly at the Japanese American National Museum in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles. At the museum, she was awarded the Administration Award in 2007. The club is very fortunate to have such a dedicated board member.”
Uba welcomed the following members into the 88 Years Young Life Membership Society: Irene Hoshizaki, Miyoko Inaba, Yoshiko Kaneko, Tats Kuwahara, Ben Matsunaga, Fumi Mizuno, Sid Okazaki, Betty Shishido, Frank Sumida, George H. Sumida, Ruby Takeshita, Edith Tanizaki and Ukie Yano.
Keynote speaker was Dr. Greg Kimura, president/CEO of JANM. He gave a brief update about the upcoming exhibits of the museum and a very interesting family story, including the incarceration of his grandfather and father in Alaska during World War II. This was the first time for many members to hear first-hand about Japanese Americans in Alaska. The members were so captivated by the story, you could have heard a pin drop.
Recreation Superintendent Ben Herrera of Langley Senior Center installed the following officers for 2014:
President: Bill Shishima
Vice President: Jack Miyagawa
Recording Secretary: Janis Uba
Treasurer: Sam Miyamoto
Corresponding Secretary: Charlotte Okada
Audio Engineer: Ray Mayeda
Auditor: Grace Kanada
Craft Class: Louise Ionia
Historian: Rose Mayeda
Membership: Joyce Hyskell, Junko Yee
Newsletter, English Editor: Eiko Sakuda
Newsletter, Japanese Editor: Yuriko Anderson
Photographer: Ray Mayeda
Socials: Betty Burris
Trips & Tours: Chico Iguchi, Jack Miyagawa, Judy Shima, Les Shima
Trustees: Robert Hamataka (Chairman), Aileen Endo, Kiyo Kuromi, Tak Murase, Harry Taguchi, Don Yamamoto, Ray Yamashita, Hal Yoshizumi
Ways & Means: Bob Miwa
Entertainment was provided by the Punama Ukulele Group. Uba led an abbreviated line-dancing session.
“The club was able to give out many, many wonderful door prizes because of the many generous supporting members, friends and businesses in and around the communities surrounding Monterey Park — from the San Gabriel Valley to Little Tokyo in Downtown Los Angeles — and wewould like to thank them all for their generosity and continued support,” Shishima said.
Monterey Park Japanese American Senior Citizens’ Club is one of the largest senior clubs in Southern California with over 550 members. It endeavors to improve the quality of life for senior citizens through good food, entertainment, and lots of socializing. Members enjoy recreational activities, make new friends, renew friendships, and stimulate a spirit of fellowship. The club arranges trips and tours locally and abroad, lectures, exhibits, bingo, informative meetings, and a variety of performances.