15th Annual Unity Luncheon Explores ?Diversity and Excellence?

The campus community will come together to celebrate diversity during the 15th annual Unity Luncheon, “Hand in Hand: Diversity and Excellence.” The event is scheduled for Tuesday, Feb. 7, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Bronco Student Center's Ursa Major Suite.

The event will feature an Asian-themed buffet lunch, opportunity drawing for great electronics prizes that will benefit student scholarships, an inspirational keynote address and cultural performances.

Delivering the keynote address is J.D. Hokoyama, who has dedicated his professional life to education and service. Today, Hokoyama is president and CEO of Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics (LEAP) Inc. LEAP is a national, nonprofit organization that seeks to achieve full participation and equality for Asian Pacific Americans through leadership, empowerment and policy. In addition, the organization provides customized leadership and cultural diversity training throughout the country, reaching more than 100,000 people. Under Hokoyamas vision and leadership, LEAP has steadily grown from its roots as a volunteer organization. LEAPs clientele currently includes federal and state government agencies, colleges and university, and Fortune 500 companies.

A former Peace Corps volunteer serving in Ethiopia, Hokoyama has previously been a high school teacher and principal before becoming the Associate National Director of the Japanese American Citizens League, the oldest and largest national organization in the country serving Japanese Americans.

Hokoyama will also be accepting the fifth Diversity Leadership Award on behalf of LEAP. The Diversity Leadership Award recognizes individuals and/or organizations that are advocates and leaders for diversity both on and off campus.

In addition, 10 faculty, staff and students will be honored as Diversity Champions for their leadership and service to the university. Receiving awards are:

  • Barbara Burke, professor of Chemistry and director of Science Educational Enhancement Services        
  • Marie Caudill, associate professor of Human Nutrition & Food Science    
  • Tony Cerda, tribal chairman of the Costanoan Rumsen Carmel Tribal Council  
  • Carmen Franklin, senior political science major and student community liaison in the Community Service-Learning Center        
  • Victor Okada, professor of English and Foreign Languages and adviser to Alpha Sigma Lambda fraternity        
  • Aileen Orlino, political science senior and National Model United Nations delegate        
  • Renford Reese, associate professor of political science and creator of Colorful Flags program        
  • Gloria Reyes, senior psychology major and James Bell intern        
  • Diane Sands, Stop Violence Grant Office Coordinator        
  • Sheryl Santiaguel, third year music business student and Pride Center student Leadership Program Coordinator        

The Unity Luncheon is co-sponsored by the Asian Pacific Faculty, Staff & Student Association; the Black Faculty & Staff Association; the Latino Faculty, Staff & Student Association;  the Pride Alliance (the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered faculty and staff association); and the Native American Outreach Committee. Each year, leadership for the luncheon rotates between these groups, and this year' event is under the direction of the APFSSA.

Space for the luncheon is limited. Tickets are $18 general admission and $12 for students. To register, contact Koji Uesugi, at kmuesugi@cpp.edu or (909) 869-4690. Additional information is available at www.cpp.edu/~apfssa.