AMERICA’S GREAT OUTDOORS: Department of the Interior & White House Office of Public Engagement Team Up to Host White House Forum on Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage



05/07/2013

Contact: Jessica Kershaw (202) 208-6416

WASHINGTON, D.C. – On Thursday, May 9, national leaders and scholars will discuss how the legacy of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders should be recognized, preserved, and interpreted for future generations as the U.S. Department of the Interior hosts the White House Forum on Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage. The event will feature remarks by Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, and senior Obama administration officials, as well as panel discussions featuring nationally recognized AAPI scholars and historians.

In the coming months, the National Park Service will continue to work with scholars representing the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities to explore ways to celebrate and understand their unique heritage. The Service’s National Historic Landmark Program will continue to develop a theme study to help guide future nominations of National Historic Landmarks and National Register of Historic Places properties.

In February, then-Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced that the National Park Service would undertake an Asian American Pacific Islander Theme Study to investigate the stories, places, and people of AAPI heritage. The new study is part of a broader effort under President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors program to commemorate and tell a more inclusive story of all Americans, including minorities and women who have made significant contributions to our nation’s history and culture.

The event will also be live streamed at: www.doi.gov/live

WHO

Welcoming Remarks

Sally Jewell, Secretary of the Interior
Tina Tchen, Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff to the First Lady
Jonathan B. Jarvis, Director, National Park Service U.S. Representative
Judy Chu, Chair, Congressional AAPI Caucus
Rhea Suh, Assistant Secretary, Policy, Management and Budget, DOI
Jon Jang, Musician & Composer

Panel 1: Telling America’s Story, An AAPI Lens 

Lisa Hasegawa, Executive Director, National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development
Joan Shigekawa, Acting Chair of the National Endowment of the Arts
Robin Danner, President & CEO, Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement
Helen Zia, Journalist and Author, Asian American Dreams: The Emergence of an American People
Brian Yang, American Actor and Producer Nikolao Pula, Director, Office of Insular Affairs
Raiatea Helm, Hawaiian Vocalist/Ukulele Player

Panel 2: AAPI Contributions to America’s Culture

Kiran Ahuja, Executive Director, White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders
Kathy Ko Chin, President and CEO, Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF)
Franklin Odo, AAPI Scholars Panel Chair, Asian American Government Executives Network
Dawn Mabalon, Professor, San Francisco State University
Pawan Dhingra, Professor of Sociology, Tufts University
Sue Lee, Executive Director, Chinese Historical Society of America

Closing Remarks

The Honorable Norman Y. Mineta, Former U.S. Secretary of Transportation & Former U.S. Secretary of Commerce

WHAT

Department of the Interior and White House Office of Public Engagement will host a forum on Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage to build on President Obama’s America’s Great Outdoors program to tell a more inclusive story of all Americans

WHEN

Thursday, May 9, 2013
12:30pm—1:00pm EST: Registration and Networking
1:45pm—2:45pm EST: Panel 1: Telling America’s Story, An AAPI Lens
2:45pm—3:15pm EST: Networking break with refreshments
3:15pm—3:30pm EST: Musical Performance
3:30pm—4:30pm EST: Panel 2: AAPI Contributions to America’s Culture
4:40pm—5:00pm EST: Closing Remarks

WHERE

The U.S. Department of the Interior
Yates Auditorium
1849 C St., NW
Washington, DC

MEDIA

Members of the media are encouraged to RSVP to Jessica Kershaw (Jessica_kershaw@ios.doi.gov) by Wednesday, May 8, at 6:00pm EST.

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