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Shotaro Hayashigatani
Shotaro Hayashigatani
Professor Emeritus Shotaro F. Hayashigatani will receive a Local Heroes Award from KVIE Public Television as part of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. The former Sacramento State professor, along with Jean Chew and James Chew, will receive the awards during a reception and ceremony at 5:30 p.m., Thursday, May 14, at the television studio at 2030 W. El Camino Ave.

KVIE has been celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month for nine years, recognizing leaders in the Asian Pacific American culture. Each winner is the subject of a short video that is shown in between KVIE programs and online, says station Marketing Communications Manager Sheryl Brown.

In addition to his teaching duties in Sacramento State’s Ethnic Studies Department, Hayashigatani was a co-founder of the Port of Sacramento Japanese School and currently serves as its principal. He also has volunteered with the Japanese American Citizens League, Senator Lions Club, and the Japan Society of Sacramento Valley Chapter.

During his tenure at Sacramento State, Hayashigatani’s students took first, second and third place on numerous occasions in the West Coast Japanese Speech Contest.

“This is a great honor. I’m so happy,” says Hayashigatani, who taught 33 years at Sacramento State before retiring four years ago.

This isn’t the only award garnered by the former professor. His efforts to promote cultural exchange between Japan and America were recently recognized by Japan’s Foreign Affairs Department, which awarded Hayashigatani the Order of the Sacred Treasure, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon.

The other recipients are also active in the community.

Jean Chew worked 41 years with the state, and is involved with the Asian Community Center of Sacramento Valley, the Asian Community Center Nursing Home and My Sister’s House, among others.

James Chew is a state retiree who also is active with the Asian Community Center Nursing Home, My Sister’s House and Rebuilding Together Sacramento.

Seating for the reception is limited. To make a reservation, visit www.kvie.org/rsvp/apa or call (916) 641-3561. For media assistance, call Sacramento State’s Public Affairs office at (916) 278-6156.

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