Date(s) - 06/24/2021
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
WSCRC Anti-Asian Racism Webinar Series: Exploring Anti-Asian Violence & Crime in Our Community
Violent attacks and other crimes against Asians and Pacific Islanders have increased dramatically in recent months all over the United States, including in our own region. The most violent of these was the murder of eight people in Atlanta on March 16, where six of the eight victims were women of Asian descent. Such crimes have both frightened and shocked the entire country. In the Puget Sound area, immigrants from all parts of Asia and the Pacific Islands have long made important economic, technological, educational and cultural contributions, and, at least in the decades since the end of World War II, they have lived largely peacefully and without fear.
The Washington State China Relations Fund will explore this topic from two perspectives in a series of two webinars. In the first webinar, members of the AAPI community will share their experiences, concerns and responses to the upsurge in violence. In the second webinar, officials from the FBI, the Seattle Police Department, and other legal entities will discuss how both victims and bystanders can respond to such criminal activity safely and effectively. They will also explore community-based responses and the ability and limitations of different law enforcement techniques to combat such violence, including use of hate crime laws.
This event is produced by the Washington State China Relations Fund, a 501(c)3 non-profit sister organization operated by the Washington State China Relations Council.
Session 1: Anti-Asian Violence and Hate Crimes: Community Voices and Responses
June 24, 2021, 4:00 – 5:00 PM PDT
Representatives of the AAPI Community in Seattle will share their views on why there has been such an upsurge in violence and their experiences and stories about the growth of this worrying trend. Our panelists will describe how their respective communities have responded to this development and their thoughts about support from our government institutions and the wider community as a whole.
Ms. Lori Matsukawa is an Emmy award winning broadcast journalist with more than 40 years in the industry. She retired after 36 years as an anchor and reporter at KING TV in Seattle. She previously worked in Redding, CA and Portland, OR.
Ms. Matsukawa won two Northwest Regional Emmy Awards, one in 2017 for her series “Prisoners in Their Own Land” about the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II and another in 2018 for “Shane Sato: Portraits of Courage” about a photographer’s mission to photograph Nisei veterans who served as part of America’s “Greatest Generation.”
Ms. Matsukawa is an alumna of the Japanese American Leadership Delegation, a program of the US-Japan Council. She is a co-founder of the Seattle Chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association.
Ms. Matsukawa graduated with a BA in Communication from Stanford University and received an MA in Communication from the University of Washington. Ms. Matsukawa served as Miss Teenage America 1974, which allowed her to travel outside her native Hawaii.
Dr. Connie So is a professor at the University of Washington. An immigrant from Hong Kong, Dr. So grew up in Seattle’s Beacon Hill neighborhood. She received her BAs in English and Communications from the University of Washington (1987), MPA from Princeton University (1989) and Ph.D. in Ethnic Studies at U.C. Berkeley (2000). She is a Professor of Teaching (2020) at UW’s American Ethnic Studies department and the Supervisor of the department’s Community Practicum and Internship. She has been active and served on the boards of several local Asian American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander American groups.
Helen Wong is the Coordinator of the Anti-Bias/Anti-Hate Program and Kaleidoscope Play and Learn at the Chinese Information and Service Center. Helen has over 20 years experience in community-based, non-profit work as well as in government and post-secondary settings with a focus in anti-racism, equity and social justice.
Sam Cho was elected to the Port of Seattle’s Commission in 2019. Commissioner Cho is the son of immigrants from South Korea, who came to the United States through the Port of Seattle. He is currently the only person of color serving on the Commission. His priorities as a commissioner include promoting trade, working towards environmental sustainability, ensuring diversity and inclusion in the workforce and contracting, and stopping human trafficking.
Commissioner Cho was the Founder and CEO of Seven Seas Export, an international trading company that was headquartered in Seattle and exported to Asia.
Prior to his entrepreneurial endeavor, Commissioner Cho was a political appointee under President Barack Obama serving at the U.S. General Services Administration. He helped manage a federal agency of more than 10,000 federal employees and worked on executing the administration’s agency-wide policies in real asset management, federal procurements, acquisitions, and technology.
Commissioner Cho’s prior experience also included serving as a Legislative Assistant to a Washington State Senator and a member of the United States Congress, and as an analyst at the U.S. Department of State.
Nelson Dong is a partner in the Seattle office of the Dorsey & Whitney law firm and is head of its National Security Group and co-head of its Asia Group. He is an Adjunct Senior Fellow at the East-West Center in Honolulu and serves on the boards of the Washington State China Relations Council in Seattle and the National Committee on US-China Relations in New York City. Nelson is also an active member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Committee of 100, and he has been deeply involved in Asian American civic and civil rights activities and causes for over 50 years.
During the Carter Administration, Nelson served as a White House Fellow and Special Assistant to Attorney General Griffin B. Bell and was Deputy Associate Attorney General at the U.S. Department of Justice.