Monday, January 24, 2011

Steve Ballmer and Harry Shum hand out red envelopes at the Asian Spring Festival

Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer
Redmond, Wa - In celebrating with the community at the 2011 Asian Spring Festival, Microsoft's CEO, Steve Ballmer and Corporate Vice President, Harry Shum handed out red envelopes which symbolizes 'good luck' to children dancers from the Chinese Dance Academy and Youth Dance Troup at the Microsoft Asian Spring Festival. The event attracted over 4000 community and business leaders, in addition the families of Microsoft employees.

(l to r) Tazin Shadid, Microsoft Asian Employee Resource Group Chair and Gil Gido, NAAAP Seattle President

Overlake Christian Center
This event was co-organized by the Chinese Employees at Microsoft (CHIME) and other Microsoft Asian communities. It is one of the the largest diversity and inclusion events at Microsoft and is the largest Spring Festival celebration in the Seattle area. We look to participating next year!

Other links:

Business: New York Times: Business Leaders Meet with Hu.



Monday, January 17, 2011

A Night at the Symphony

Over fifty NAAAP-Seattle members and attended the Celebrate Asia! Seattle Symphony Concert on Jan. 14, 2011. For many NAAAP members, this was their first time going to Benaroya Hall, which is the home of the Seattle Symphony.

The Seattle Symphony and a committee made up of representatives from the Chinese, Vietnamese, Japanese, Korean, Filipino, Thai, and Indian communities organized the annual concert, which has drawn 2,400 people for the past three years.

NAAAP Seattle PR/ Marketing Chair Julie Pham represented the Vietnamese community. Because of her participation on the concert organizing committee, NAAAP Seattle was considered an organizational partner for the concert.

"This is a world-class concert and a joyous event," said Pham. "I love sharing this experience with people.

Many audience members wore their Asian ethnic costumes, such as Qipaos, Batiks, Kimonos, Ao dais.

The concert included highlights from the Grammy-winning opera singer Sumi Jo, sheng player Hu Jianbing, koto player, Masayo Ishigure, the winner of the first-ever Celebrate Asia! composer competition Huang Ruo introduced his piece, "The Yellow Earth," performed by the Seattle Symphony.

Special guests in the audience included Attorney General Rob McKenna and Bellevue Deputy Mayor Conrad Lee.

For Japanese exchange student Yugo Nawa, it was his first time at the Seattle Symphony. He said, "The concert was amazingly impressive. I was having tough time in terms of work. But the awesome music and ambiance made me feel great, and encouraged me to keep moving ahead."

Daniel Nguyen, the winner of the 2009 NAAAP-Seattle High School Scholarship, also learned about this event through NAAAP. The University of Washington freshman said it was his first time going to the Seattle Symphony.

"A lot of people my age, I feel don’t really appreciate classical music and I believe it’s because we do not go to venues such as these," said Nguyen. "What was fantastic especially for me was how my appreciation for Asian American music grew deeper."

Photos by Don Pham/Northwest Vietnamese News.

Top: Grammy winning opera singer Sumi Jo starring in Celebrate Asia! Middle: Chaopraya Ensemble (Thai) performing in the preconcert. Bottom: NAAAP-Seattle board members posing during intermission.

For more photos, visit NAAAP-Seattle on Facebook.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

First Friday NAAAP Mixer of 2011

On January 7, 2011, NAAAP Seattle organized its First Friday mixer of the year at Grand Cru Bar in Bellevue. Sixty people came and six people signed up for new membership. Social Chair Heidi Yu said she was pleased about the turnout. She added there were many new faces.

Helen Lee signed up for membership at the event. She said she wanted to join because, she "wanted to become better connected with other Asian American professionals in our community."

"I was impressed by the number of people that were in attendance, as well as the variety of professions which were represented," added Lee. "Great people, good fun!"

Jenafer Park, the new Community Service chair, conducted a survey about the NAAAP community service program. The 35 survey takers were entered in a drawing to win Starbucks gift cards. The winners included Karen Lin, Lisa Chen, and Jason Chu. The survey results will be used to improve NAAAPS' community service program.

Former Community Service Chair David Eam was elected as Vice President of Internal Affairs in December.

PR/ marketing Chair Julie Pham, Technology Chair Sherwin Tsao, NAAAP members Karen Lin and Mikii Liu, and first-time NAAAP event goer Paul Hopkins volunteered to register attendees.

Heidi Yu plans to organize a Dim Sum brunch sometime this spring at Wild Ginger. If you have any suggestions for mixer venues and social events please email

The next First Friday Mixer will be held in Seattle on February 4, 2011. Please check the NAAAP website for details.

Photos by Mikii Liu.