Mitchell T. Maki

Mitchell T. Maki is president and CEO of Go For Broke National Education Center. He is the lead author of the award-winning book Achieving the Impossible Dream: How Japanese Americans Obtained Redress (University of Illinois Press).

Updated December 2016

identity en

Time’s a ticking, focus on what’s important!

It was a typically hectic Saturday morning. My son, Troy, and I were frantically driving home from basketball practice in order to be at baseball practice in an hour—and we couldn’t be late since I was the coach! As we turned onto our street, I told Troy, “When we get home, grab your baseball gear, grab a granola bar, and we are out of here! Time’s a ticking; focus on what’s important!” We were two dudes on a mission!

As we pulled into the driveway, I noticed an elderly man shuffling up the street. He had ...

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identity en

Thank You, Mrs. Klein

I must have passed her house a thousand times. Each time, I wanted to stop, to see if she would hear my story and accept my gratitude. Would she even remember? I don’t know why, but on this one afternoon I stopped, got out of my car, and walked to her front door.

I will always remember her from that lazy autumn day from more than four decades ago. I was a ten-year-old boy playing touch football with some boys at the park. As the game wore on, the “touch” turned into “push,” then the “push” turned into aggressive ...

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politics en

Japanese American National Museum Magazine

Memories Too Painful to Remember; Lessons Too Important to Forget

Six years ago, we all watched the terrifying images of passenger planes crashing into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, the carnage and death of fellow Americans, and the damage to our national sense of identity and security. Throughout that first day and the weeks to follow, I kept wondering: Who were these attackers? Why did they choose such a devastating method of killing innocent people? Most importantly, I asked what our response would be.

The words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. kept running through my mind. Dr. King avowed that “the ultimate measure” of a nation ...

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