Ellen Endo

Ellen Endo is a journalist whose professional experience includes a 20-year association with The Rafu Shimpo as well as senior level positions in the television and motion picture industry. She currently serves President of the Little Tokyo Business Association and provides communications, writing, and media relations through her own business, Hapa Consulting Services. Born in Livorno, Italy, Ms. Endo is bicultural. Her mother is from Milan, Italy, and her father’s family is from Shizuoka, Japan.

Updated September 2015

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Two Veterans On A Mission

ARLETA — As Nikkei Senior Gardens prepares to mark its 10th anniversary, thoughts are turning to Harry Nakada and Harold Muraoka, whose vision and tenacity led to the establishment of the San Fernando Valley’s first senior facility for Japanese Americans.

The enduring bond between Nakada and Muraoka began as a chance meeting and grew into a lofty vision to help care for the Nikkei community’s greatest generation. Sadly, Nakada and Muraoka passed away in 2018 within four months of each other, yet they continue to inspire those who support, staff, and reside at the facility.

In many ways, the journey …

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Goliath vs. David's Angry Obaachan

Japanese Village Plaza and the Japanese American National Museum were jam-packed on Saturday and Sunday. It was a sign that business was good in Little Tokyo, but to the merchants, restaurateurs, and other J-town regulars, it represented much more.

It meant that Little Tokyo merchants asserted themselves for the first time in quite a while, and the whole thing had a unifying effect.

As previously reported in The Rafu Shimpo, Metro announced plans to close the Little Tokyo/Arts District Gold Line station December 4 through mid-February. In addition, there would be periodic closures of First Street between Alameda and …

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Nanka Nikkei Voices

The Elevator Encounter

About a year ago, a friend and I were boarding an elevator in a downtown high-rise. I pushed the button for the fifth floor.

My friend wanted to know how The Rafu Shimpo manages to gather the student’s names for it graduation issue every year. “It’s getting harder and harder every year,” I admitted. “School officials don’t always want to give us the names of students of Japanese ancestry.”

A man, who was already standing in the elevator, overheard us and piped in. “Why is it that Japanese American students do so well in school?”

My first thought was, “Hey, …

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