Wednesday, November 10, 2010

31st Annual Leadership and Scholarship Gala: A masquer-Asian Ball

By Ninette Cheng

Last Saturday (November 6), NAAAP-Seattle celebrated thirty-one years of scholarship, leadership and the future at the 31st Annual Leadership and Awards Gala.

180 of us dined, networked, auctioned for items and danced the night away at the Golf Club at Newcastle. This year’s scholarship winners included Stacy Huynh, Erin Kim and Tian Kisch. The NAAAP national scholarship awarded Seattle’s Erika Sanchez, also in attendance.

Huynh is a recent graduate of the University of Washington and former director of UW’s Asian Student Commission. She will be using the scholarship to continue her education in UW’s Master of Professional Accounting Program for Audit & Assurance.

NAAAP-Seattle MasquerAsian Ball Photo Booth, Nov. 6, 2010, Newcastle Golf Club.
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Photo by Don Pham (
Kim is a graduating senior from Issaquah and founder of charity Fostering Tunes, a branch of the Treehouse foster care organization, which allows foster children to share their stories through music.

Kisch is the co-president and co-founder of Redmond High School’s first Asian Student Association and is a lifelong member of the Families with Children from China Northwest (FCC-NW). Kisch organized and planned a volunteer trip to work in Chinese orphanages in and around Beijing and Xian during the summer of 2009.

Sanchez is a senior at Seattle University. She is currently involved with the United Filipino Club (UFC) and her youth group Bukas Loob sa Diyos (BLD).

Christine Umayam, founder and CEO of Child United, stepped in at the last minute (replacing James Sun) as the keynote interviewer. Umayam spoke about her charity and the importance of working with and helping children receive an education.

“Education is the key to everything: a better future, limitless opportunities and intellectual growth,” Umayam said. “Through education, we are seeing a ripple effect happening before our own eyes... seeing a child shine gives hope to their families, in turn it helps their community.”

The gala is not only for the scholarship; like all our events, it’s a great networking opportunity and time for our members.

“It’s a good way to network and meet people and see what’s happening in the community a little bit,” guest and NAAAP member Ed Goh said. “In that sense it was good to see some of the work and the initiatives that are happening. It was good to see young people moving ahead and getting their dreams fulfilled. I didn’t grow up here so to hear these high school kids talk about their conflicts and confusions was a little interesting.”

Despite the stormy weather outside, the evening was great fun. We hope you had fun and if you did not attend, be sure to join us next year!

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