By RYOKO NAKAMURA, Rafu Japanese Staff Writer
Approximately 60 members along with distinguished guests gathered at the Double Tree by Hilton in Downtown Los Angeles on Feb. 7 to celebrate the Japanese Women’s Society of Southern California’s 2015 New Year’s Luncheon.
Kay Kayoko Inose, president of JWSSC, welcomed everyone in the room: “Thank you all for joining us today. I just want to take this opportunity to thank all of the members and guests who supported and participated in our 110-year anniversary celebration last October. It was truly a special occasion.”
As JWSSC enters its 111th year, Inose pledged its continuous volunteer support for Nikkei community organizations and events, including the Japanese Chamber of Commerce of Southern California, annual Memorial Day services at Evergreen Cemetery, and Keiro Nursing Home. JWSSC will again co-sponsor the Women of the Year luncheon with the Japanese American Citizens League in May and have its annual fundraising booth at Nisei Week in August.
Inose promised that the JWSSC will keep fulfilling its role to promote the well-being of the Japanese American community by educating youth, providing friendship and maintaining goodwill between the United States and Japan.
Before lunch was served, Yoshio Lee Aoki, president of the JCCSC, and Sabine Horinouchi, honorary president of the JWSSC, made congratulatory addresses to one of the oldest and most historical community organizations.
Aoki said, “Fujinkai does not only assist the Chamber, but they have gone the extra mile to help us. You have made us all that we are. … I truly believe that Fujinkai is the backbone of our society. Without this group, I don’t think the Japanese community would be what it is today.”
Masami Kobayashi, president of Nanka Kenjinkai Kyogikai, led everyone in a kanpai toast.
After lunch, participants enjoyed kodan (traditional oral Japanese storytelling) by Hanta Handa. He shared the story “Nanbuzaka Yuki no Wakare” (Parting in the Snow at Nanbuzaka).
The 2015 officers are: Madame Sabine Horinouchi, honorary president; Kay Kayoko Inose, president; Kitty Sankey, Yoshiko Yamaguchi, Itsuko Ramos and Kiyoko Yoshiyama, vice presidents; Atsuko Lee, secretary (Japanese); Yuriko Shikai, secretary (English); Keiko Miyahara, treasurer; Miyako Arao, assistant treasurer; Kiyo Doizaki, Toshie Kawaguchi, Marie Tanaka, and Akiyo Kawabe, auditors.
Photos by RYOKO NAKAMURA/Rafu Shimpo