Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics, Inc. (LEAP) celebrated its 30th anniversary at the Westin Bonaventure Hotel & Suites in Los Angeles on Thursday. Founded in 1982, LEAP is a national, nonprofit organization that aims to advance Asians and Pacific Islanders in all areas of society. Every year, LEAP recognizes select individuals and organizations that have demonstrated leadership in the Asian and Pacific Islander community. This year, JD Hokoyama, Dr. Nguyen Dinh Thang, Maggie Mui, and Hui O Hana Pono were honored.
The evening started off with a VIP reception, hosted by Toyota Financial Services, followed by a silent auction and hors d’oeuvres. In attendance were LEAP’s Board of Directors as well as guests from LEAP’s extensive client list, which includes many leading corporations. After mingling, it was time for dinner and the presentation of awards.
The two individual honorees for the evening were JD Hokoyama and Dr. Nguyen Dinh Thang. Hokoyama is the former president and CEO of LEAP. He recently retired last October after leading LEAP for 30 years. Hokoyama still acts as a leadership consultant in the Asian and Pacific Islander community. Dr. Thang is the Executive Director of Boat People SOS, a Vietnamese American nonprofit organization that focuses on disaster relief in the U.S. and several Asian countries. Dr. Thang has won several other awards, including the Outstanding Citizen Achievement Award from OCA in 2010.
The David R. Barclay Alumni Leadership Award is given to a LEAP alumnae who exemplifies the values of equal opportunity, social justice, diversity and inclusion, integrity and servant leadership. This year’s recipient was Maggie Miu, the Senior Vice President and Regional Director of Diverse Segments at Wells Fargo, who has been with the company for 22 years.
Last but not least, the Community Award was given to Hui o Hana Pono, a nonprofit corporation that aims to improve the lives of Native Hawaiians. Founded by David EK Cooper in 2003, Hui o Hana Pono now consists of five companies – The Hana Group, Hana Industries, HBC Management Services, Haka Incorporated, and Hana Technologies and Systems.
Learn more about LEAP and how you can help here.