エレイン・イコマ・コウ

(Elaine Ikoma Ko)

Elaine Ikoma Ko is the former Executive Director of the Hokubei Hochi Foundation, a nonprofit that helps The North American Post, Seattle’s Japanese community newspaper, where this article was first published. She is a member of the U.S.-Japan Council, an alumnus of the Japanese American Leadership Delegation (JALD) to Japan, and leads spring and autumn group tours to Japan.

Updated April 2021

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Bill Tashima: Gaining His Identity and Acceptance - Part 1

Bill Tashima is a beloved community volunteer in the Seattle Nikkei (Japanese ancestry) and Asian American communities, having been involved with many nonprofits and receiving awards for his service. Yet, readers know little about his life journey as a gay man, losing his partner to AIDS, and his family’s love and support that has allowed him to evolve into the wonderfully whole and healthy person he is today. This three-part series will explore his extraordinary story. 

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Bill, while many people know you, there are many who are not familiar with all your community activities. As an introduction, can you ...

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Larry Matsuda, A Masterful Life - Part 3

Dad never talked about Minidoka.
That was the noble thing.
Before World War II,
there was Garfield High School for him,
ice skating on Greenlake ...

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Larry Matsuda, A Masterful Life - Part 2

Read Part 1 >>

You became involved in the social and racial justice activism of the late 1960’s. What was it like and tell us about your groundbreaking success with UW’s Educational Opportunity Program (EOP)?

The Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s was exciting. African Americans were in the lead and later Asians became active. In Seattle, there were Asian American counter-culture community newspapers like “The Asian Family Affair” with activists Al Sugiyama, Kathy Sugiyama, Frank Irigon, Eugene Tagawa, and others who published the monthly. I believe the local “International Examiner” was taken over by community activists a short ...

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Larry Matsuda, A Masterful Life - Part 1

Larry Matsuda, higher education Ph.D. Racial/social-justice activist leader. Accomplished educator. Award-winning author, poet, and more. This writer was intrigued to explore what is so unique about Dr. Larry to have accomplished so much and in such diverse arenas. These interviews seek to capture key experiences that molded his life: being born in Minidoka internment camp during World War II, growing up with his family’s post-incarceration trauma, and his indefatigable efforts to bust through the many racial barriers of the 1960’s and beyond. He was more than prescient in the ’60s to understand the importance of multi-racial ...

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Mika Kurose Rothman: Perspectives from a Third Generation of Family Activists

This is the second article of a two-part interview series. The first part was with Ruthann Kurose (Sept. 11 issue of The North American Post). Today, we continue with Ruthann’s daughter, Mika Kurose Rothman.

I first met a very young Mika through her mother. Mika was aware at an early age of the examples of community service and activism set by her grandparents, Aki and “Junx” (Junelow) Kurose, and their six children (Hugo, Guy, Ruthann, Roland, Paul, and Marie).

In addition to Ruthann’s strong example of activism, Mika was also fortunate to be mentored by “Auntie” Ruth Woo ...

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