Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Diversity is celebrated at Seattle City Hall

(l to r) Gil Gido, president , National Association of Asian American Professionals-Seattle Chapter; Mazvita Maraire, coordinator, Garfield Community Center; Moderator: Bruce Harrell, Seattle City Council; Fern Renville, executive director, Red Eagle Soaring; and Ricardo Sanchez, vice-president of communications, SeaMar Community Health Centers
Seattle, Wa - Before a diverse audience in the Bertha Knight Landes Room at City Hall, a panel reflecting the mulitcultural essence of Seattle assembled to celebrate Black History Month responding to questions about their careers, leadership characteristics, achieving goals and offering their perspectives on leadership because in the everchanging world, leadership today is essential, not only in one's career but in the community. This event gave everyone an opportunity to share experiences and perspectives.

Seattle Council member, Bruce Harrell moderated for nearly two hours having the audience engaged in the conversation. At the end of it all, everyone's leadership and appreciation for diversity expanded. Here are a couple of the questions asked to panelists and not surprising, many of the answers are alive in each community.

  • As you reflect on your career, what personal traits or characteristics have helped you become a successful leader?
    • Answer: Passion, self awareness, being a team player, integrity and communication. These are all learned skills that you can master with a little bit of practice. Pick two and see what difference it makes in your career.

  • What have been your greatest challenges toward doing your job and achieving your goals in the workplace? 
    • Answer: Being different can be percieved as a challenge, but realizing that it can be a career asset will not only make you valuable, but also helps in the enjoyment of your career and for those around you, so embrace your differences and express them.

  • What advice would you give on surviving in multicultural environment?
    • Answer: Part of all of our jobs in the workplace is to educate. While it may seem that everyone knows about you, they really don't. Share and be open. It will only create inclusiveness and demystify assumptions, which most often create conflict.

Thank you to the African American Affinity Group of the Seattle Public Utilities for organizing and hosting this event.

Monday, February 14, 2011

NAAAP volunteers with FareStart, 2/6

NAAAP-Seattle volunteered at FareStart on Feb. 6 for the first time of 2011.

As usual, FareStart attracts more volunteers than NAAAP-Seattle has spots available. NAAAP-Seattle members are given priority when registering for this popular volunteer event.

Volunteers this time include: Sherwin Tsao, Jenafer Park, Wilson Ung, Heng Sun, Katie Phan, Rina Shin, Charles Davis, Lilly Kuo, John Park, and Jiunn Lee.

For any information on NAAAP-Seattle's award-winning community service program, please contact NAAAP-Seattle Community Service Chair Jenafer Park at

February's First Friday Mixer at O'Asian

Over 100 people packed the lounge area O'Asian Restaurant in Seattle on Feb. 4 for NAAAP-Seattle's First Friday Monthly Mixer. Twelve new members signed up at the event

NAAAP-Seattle member Eric Pao said, "It was definitely one of the better mixers. There were a lot of new faces."

Three photographers volunteered their services, including Ben Zheng, Like Zhang, and Steven Quan.

Volunteers at registration included: Pearl Pan, Lily Lee, Chen Wang, Sherwin Tsao, and Mikii Liu.

The next First Friday Monthly Mixer will be in downtown Bellevue on March 4.

For questions or to volunteer on the NAAAP-Seattle social committee, please contact NAAAP-Seattle Social Chair Heidi Yu at

Photos by Ben Zheng.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Measure twice. Cut once.

Redmond, Wa - It's a well known fact that a little bit of planning goes along way, so every year the NAAAP Seattle Board meets to plan the upcoming year and to provide learning opportunities to our Board members. This year was no different.

Returning as our facilitator was Wendy Watanabe. She led us through discussions on conflict resolution and building joint solutions through consensus. When all was said and done, we landed on an annual operating plan to fulfill on the vision and mission of NAAAP Seattle.

Rounding out the day was our resident media mavens, Julie Pham (Northwest Vietnamese News) and Marian Liu (Seattle Times) training the Board on branding. This was especially effective since we all became reaquainted with our accomplishments.

Lastly, we had an opportunity to welcome our newest Board members, Jen Park as Community Service Chair (Google) Micheal Okimura as Professional Development Chair (Pacific Capital Resource Group) and Sherwin Tsao as Technology Chair (Guidant Financial Group).

With the planning done, we can now focus on executing our plan. We considered many factors such as our membership base, our partner and sponsor ecosystem and our community needs. We hope you'll join us in what we think as a defining year for NAAAP Seattle.

NAAAP Seattle Board of Directors

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

NAAAP-Seattle helps clean up International District

Next time you go to the International District, be aware that So. Jackson Street and So. King Street between Fifth and Twelve Ave So. are adopted by NAAAP-Seattle.

Sixteen NAAAP-Seattle volunteers hit their adopted streets of the International District on Sunday, Jan. 23.

Items NAAAP-Seattle picked up included hubcaps and windshield glass.

Repeat volunteer Steven Quan said he always signs up for the ID clean-ups organized by NAAAP-Seattle.

"It's important to keep our community clean," said Quan. "Even when I'm just out on the street, if I see a bit of trash, I can't help it,...I'll pick it up."

James Tabafunda said he had a few hours to spare on a Sunday, "so I thought it'd volunteering would be a good way to spend it."

Photos by James Tabafunda.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

EDI Leadership Together

NAAAP Board members, Gil Gido, David Eam, Hang Pin Chen, Vivian Hauer and Ke (Clair) Ding participated in Executive Development Institute’s (EDI) 2nd Annual Leadership Together Conference on January 22, 2011. Richard Velazquez, the Co-Founder of NSHMBA and the Sr. Global Product Manager for Xbox delivered an excellent speech on how to lead team through innovation and creativity. Other presenters included Lillian Tsai on “Interpersonal Communications”, John Chen on “12 Fixes for Team Fails” and Misha Mercer on “Team Innovation”. The event was put together by the planning committee at EDI. Joyce Zhou and Starr McDnald were members of the planning committee.

Joyce Zhou of ACRS said, “As part of the planning committee, I was very excited to see the great turnout. The conference successfully served its purpose of developing diverse leaders by bringing together professionals from a wide variety of backgrounds and companies to learn team building and communications skills, while fostering innovation. I’ve received many positive comments afterwards and would love to see this conference happen again next year.

Starr McDonald of EDI added, “I thought the event was stellar and exceeded its objectives in collaborating, networking and skill building. It is a privilege for EDI to align with other professional organizations that share a common mission and learn, live and grow together.”

NAAAP-Seattle is proud to be a sponsor of Executive Development Institute which is committed to train leaders in Asian Pacific & Hispanic communities. If you are interested in any of the EDI programs, complete an application at