Board Directions

NEB updateNational Executive Board (NEB) Update
by Bev Ohashi, President

National Executive Board Members and Administrators at the Inaugural Meeting Photo by:  Lisa Schoenhofer

At the 2014 NAJC National Conference in Vancouver hosted by the Greater Vancouver Japanese Canadian Citizens’ Association (GVJCCA) under the leadership of Derek Iwanaka, the National Executive Board (NEB) for the next 2 years (2014 – 2016) was elected at the AGM held on September 20th.

One of our priorities as the NEB will be to keep you informed about the work that we do and the tasks being completed by the 8 standing committees:  Community Development, Constitution, Endowment Fund, Finance, Heritage, Human Rights, Membership, and Young Leaders.  We are always looking for new individuals who can join these committees to support NAJC initiatives.

As President, I am pleased to be working with the following executive directors where we met at our inaugural meeting in Winnipeg Oct 18 and 19, 2014:

Tosh Kitagawa, Vice President
Chair of Human Rights Committee

From Vancouver, Tosh has been involved with the GVJCCA Human Rights Committee for over 20 years and the recipient with his wife Mary of the 2013 NAJC National Award.  Tosh will continue to work on significant human rights issues including Aboriginal matters.

Kevin Okabe, Treasurer
Chair of Finance Committee

From Calgary, Kevin is an active volunteer in the Japanese Canadian communities of Winnipeg and Calgary.  Recognized as one of Calgary’s Top 40 chartered accountants, Kevin has been instrumental in moving the NAJC towards financial growth to support our profile and strategic planning.

Susan Matsumoto, Secretary
Chair of Community Development Committee

From Calgary, Susan has served on the NAJC Endowment Fund Committee and appointed as Director of Constitution and By-Laws last year.  Susan believes that the NAJC has the responsibility to strengthen local communities as well as providing leadership to individuals and JC groups.

Valerie Hoshizaki Nordin, Director
Chair of Membership Committee

From Winnipeg, Valerie has been involved on the MJCCA in many capacities as President, Treasurer, Chair of Community Fund, and volunteer for various committees.  Valerie has been elected in her second term as Director focusing on strengthening membership and commitment to human rights for all.

Lillian Nakamura Maguire, Director
Chair of Constitution and By-Laws Committee

From Whitehorse, Lillian also lived in Saskatchewan as a strong advocate for social justice.  As founding member of JCAY (Yukon), member of GVJCCA, Nikkei National Museum, and the Canadian Race Relations Foundation, Lillian has served for 4 years as Vice President of NAJC.  She begins her new role focusing on the constitution and by-laws.

Lisa Schoenhofer, Director
Chair of  JC Young Leaders Committee (JCYLC)

From Ottawa, Lisa has served on the OJCA (Ottawa) Board as Vice President and Director.  Lisa is beginning her second term as an NEB Director focusing on developing the involvement of young people in the NAJC and establishing a Young Leaders Conference.

The challenging work of the NEB has begun to establish our strategic plan for 2014-15 based on the priorities identified by our members:  improving our communications, strengthening our membership, increasing our national profile, and supporting youth and young people programs. It will be an exciting year of building leadership and capacity within our national organization.

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