HomeCity NewsLCF Quartet Honored at AAPI Event

LCF Quartet Honored at AAPI Event

In honor of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, state Sen. Anthony Portantino (D–Burbank) recognized AAPI women, businesses and nonprofit organizations Friday, May 31, in Pasadena. The event highlighted the rich cultural heritage of the AAPI community and the achievements and contributions of the community’s leaders in the 25th Senate District.

Since 1990, the U.S. government has designated May as Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month, celebrating the achievements and contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States.

May was chosen as the annual AAPI Heritage Month by Congress because of two significant historical events for the AAPI community in the United States. On May 7, 1843, the first Japanese immigrant traveled to the United States. On May 10, 1869, the transcontinental railroad was completed and the majority of the workers who laid the tracks were Chinese immigrants.

“Taking time to raise awareness and appreciation of our broad communities in our state helps us remember that we all play a part in working towards creating inclusivity and understanding in our society,” Portantino said. “During AAPI Heritage Month, I am proud to recognize our community champions throughout the 25th District who are dedicated to serving our cities and neighborhoods with distinction. It is important to recognize our diverse and rich cultural heritage, as well as the ongoing challenges they face, not only during the month of May, but year-round.”

Portantino recognized 20 deserving honorees who have positively contributed to our communities and the state of California.

25th Senate District AAPI Honorees:

Ahee Han, La Cañada Flintridge

Ahee Han is committed to promoting excellence within her community through her professional career and as a community volunteer. As president of the La Cañada Flintridge Educational Foundation and chair of the Korean Outreach Committee, she actively fundraises for the La Cañada Unified School District and fosters increased Korean American involvement in the larger school community. Han’s dedication to public service and strong leadership extends through her contributions on the LCUSD DEI Committee.

Caroline Que Anderson, La Cañada Flintridge

Caroline Que Anderson was elected to the La Cañada Unified School District Board of Education in 2020. She is the first Asian American woman to serve on the board and brings her grassroots energy to making policy decisions that advance the interests of all students. Anderson is a dedicated volunteer not just to the school district but also to her community. She is on the executive board of the La Cañada Flintridge Tournament of Roses Association, Kiwanis Club of La Cañada, La Cañada Sister Cities Association, Foothills Community Scholarship Foundation, and is an ambassador for the La Cañada Flintridge Chamber of Commerce.

Li Hsiang (Lisa) Chung, La Cañada Flintridge

Lisa Chung is the college & career counselor/specialist at La Cañada High School. Prior to establishing the College & Career Center, Chung was the Engineering & Medical Academy counselor in Burbank. She started her counseling career over 20 years ago at Granada Hills Charter High School as its first Asian American counselor. Chung also worked as an adjunct professor at California Lutheran University and at UC San Diego as a senior learning skills counselor. She is passionate about supporting AAPI youth and hopes to inspire others to be brave change agents. Chung has presented “Unseen & Unheard: Elevating AAPI Adolescents’ Mental Health” at conferences.

Mijung Konakov, La Cañada Flintridge

Mijung Konakov has been an active member of the La Cañada Flintridge Unified School District community since 2017, serving as a dedicated parent volunteer and educator. Beyond her involvement in education, Konakov has also played active roles in the Korean American Federation of North Los Angeles, the Korean National Association Memorial Foundation and the La Cañada Engineering Club. Konakov holds certifications in teaching Korean as a foreign language and teaches Korean at the Korean Education Center in Los Angeles. She is deeply committed to empowering individuals’ cultural intelligence by facilitating multicultural events and engaging with diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives in educational and community settings.

Korean American Federation of North Los Angeles (KAFNLA)

KAFNLA serves to represent and advocate for the interests of Korean Americans and associated citizens in North Los Angeles. Their mission encompasses supporting and empowering the Korean American community through a range of initiatives and services. These include establishing communication networks to provide important information on citizen rights, health, safety, welfare, and education. KAFNLA promotes friendly relations within Korean communities and with other groups through joint activities like cultural festivals and sports events, fostering youth education, and drug/alcohol prevention programs. They provide educational and hobby programs for the elderly, conduct fundraising activities to support their programs, and recognize contributions to the organization with certificates and appreciation plaques. KAFNLA stands as a pillar of support and empowerment for the Korean American population in North Los Angeles, striving to enhance their quality of life and strengthen their sense of belonging.

Korean American Youth Association (KAYA), North Los Angeles

KAYA pursues and provides an appropriate environment for youth to explore and develop their potential –reaching it to a maximum level– and to train the whole child concept under specially designed after-school programs. The organization represents and advocates the interests and voices of the Korean American youth and other associated youth communities residing in the areas of Northern Los Angeles by providing and promoting various services and community activities. This includes promoting friendly relations and collaborations between different groups within the Korean communities, as well as between Korean communities, in the area through  cultural festivals, food fairs, sports events, and sports projects.

The Korean American Federation of North Los Angeles, which represents and advocates for the interest of Korean Americans and the associated citizens of north L.A., was recognized by state Sen. Anthony Portantino for its contributions to the community. — Photos courtesy state Sen. Anthony Portantino’s office
<br><em>The Korean American Youth Association a nonprofit organization was recognized by state Sen Anthony Portantino on May 31 for its achievements and contributions to the AAPI community<em>

First published in the June 20 print issue of the Outlook Valley Sun.

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