Home Press Room LTSCene Newsletter LTSCene - March 2016

LTSCene - March 2016

LTSCene Newsletter

Photo of Yasuko Sakamoto
Yasuko’s Retirement Tickets Now Available

Tickets to Yasuko Sakamoto’s Retirement Luncheon are now available for purchase at http://yasuko.ltsc.org/. The luncheon will be held at the Los Verdes Golf Course on May 7, 2016 at 12:00 p.m. Individual tickets are $45. Sponsorship opportunities are also available for this event on the website. We hope that you will join us for this important celebration!

Read more about Yasuko’s retirement from the Rafu Shimpo.

South Bay Open House
Expanding Social Services to the South Bay

On February 19, more than 100 supporters, friends and clients dropped by our open house to celebrate the expansion of the Social Services to the South Bay. Our new office is located at the Gardena Valley Japanese Cultural Institute at 1964 W. 162nd St., Gardena.

Little Tokyo Service Center has provided services to seniors, caregivers and families with young children in the South Bay for more than 20 years. Last fall, LTSC received a grant from NeighborWorks America, a national nonprofit organization, to enhance services, provide support to establish an office, and expand accessibility and outreach to the large Japanese American community in the South Bay, including the large Shin-Issei (post-World War II Japanese immigrant) population living and working in the area.

In LA County, one in five Nikkei (Japanese Americans) is over the age of 65 and 4% of our community is over the age of 85. That means services like ours are not only needed, but crucial in continuing to make positive change.

“We’re really fortunate to be able to create a permanent space here at JCI to be able to provide even more services,” said Executive Director Dean Matsubayashi.

The new office is open Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. until 12 p.m. for walk-ins and other times by appointment.

Read the full coverage on the Rafu Shimpo here and watch Dean’s opening remarks available for viewing via Cultural News.

Gayle Wong's Retirement Party
Gayle Wong Retires

After more than 10 years of service at the Little Tokyo Service Center, Director of Asset Management Gayle Wong retires.

Gayle first joined LTSC in 2005 as a volunteer with the Property Management department. Prior to volunteering at LTSC, Gayle worked in high-rise commercial property management for 20 years before going into early retirement. When the Director of Asset & Property Management position was vacated in the fall of 2005, Gayle stepped in as the new Director.

Under Gayle's leadership, property management operations stabilized and the portfolio grew from 350 residential units in 2005 to 662 units in 2012. In 2012, LTSC formalized a split between its property management and asset management operations, and Gayle became the Director of Asset Management.

Over the last few years as director, Gayle developed systems and tools to help LTSC better manage its real estate assets. She worked with housing regulators and lenders, met with service partners and investors, worked on residual receipts calculations, examined financials, read partnership and legal documents, and much more. Although her dedication will be missed, we are all very thankful for her everlasting contributions to making positive change for people and places.

Little Tokyo Photo
The Story Of The Little Tokyo That Could…And Will

By Shelley Poticha and Dean Matsubayashi

The year 2015 saw at least a dozen local businesses close their doors in Little Tokyo - a place whose cultural identity is intertwined with local commerce that provides community residents with products and services in their own language while engaging with embedded stakeholders to appreciate and respect the history of the neighborhood. Without this authenticity, such neighborhoods cease to exist.

An initiative called Sustainable Little Tokyo (SLT) is a neighborhood-wide, collaborative and holistic approach seeking to develop a community-driven future for supporting the continued existence of this historic neighborhood. By promoting environmental, cultural and local economic sustainability, it's an innovative model for organizing and activating a community to disrupt the gentrification that began in earnest in 2013.

SLT's leadership is anchored by the Little Tokyo Community Council, the Japanese American Cultural and Community Center, and Little Tokyo Service Center. Together, with individual residents and local stakeholders, community groups, resource partners and public agencies and departments, SLT has donated more than 2,000 pounds of surplus produce from a local farmers market to a food bank, advised 50 businesses and 160 residents on how to save energy and water, hosted traditional arts events at the three historic trees in the neighborhood, and collaborated with the local council district office to decorate 12 utility boxes with SLT-inspired art.

Read the full story here on Natural Resources Defense Council’s blog.

Budokan's Logo
Big Budokan Bash Fundraiser

Join Budokan supporters and friends on April 30, 2016 at Nishi Hongwanji in Little Tokyo for the Big Budokan Bash fundraiser! Live music and dancing will accompany this fun-filled night with great people. Proceeds from this event will go to help the Budokan project get one step closer to its fundraising goal. For more information, please click here.

As a project of Little Tokyo Service Center, Budokan of Los Angeles is a multi-purpose sports and activities center and the only community-driven project in Little Tokyo. Serving as the community’s Home Court For All, Budokan is a space that will connect youth, seniors and families with the rich history and culture of our vibrant Little Tokyo.

For more information on Budokan, please visit the project’s website.

Calendar Icon
Upcoming Events
April 30, May 5, 14 and 21, 2016 - LTSC's Entrepreneur Training Program in Little Tokyo from 10 am to 4 pm. For more information: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it 213-473-1658 or 626-221-8998 (conducted in Japanese; ​$60 fee)

April 30 – Big Budokan Bash Fundraiser

May 7 – Yasuko Sakamoto's Retirement Luncheon

Sept 10 - APISBP Expo

October 15 – A3M Starnight (more info to come)
Recyle Icon
Green Tip of the Month

Heating the water in the washing machine is one of the largest uses of energy in the home. Next laundry day, try using cold water. Clothes come out just as clean and you are saving energy and money.

Donor Shout Outs for February!

Thank you for your support!
Young & Eiko Amano
Dennis Arguelles
Yi Bing Chen & Ming Shan Liang
Consulate General of Japan
Lorraine & Jeffrey Dohzen
Jennie & Arthur Hasegawa
Sharlene & Mark Hirai
Therese & JD Hokoyama
Kayoko Inohara
Minoru “Walt” Kuida
Mr. & Mrs. Liu
June & Gary Masada
Teresa & Robert Matsushima
Nichi Bei Fujin Kai
Dean Okamura
Justin Otsuji
Mable & Frank Takenaka
George Tanaka
Stacey Tanaka
Keith Umemoto
Emily & Dan Weaver
Gerald Yee
Cui Ling Zhu

In Memory of Jim Hosaki
Suzy & Tomie Katsuda

In Memory of Chor Chai Tan
Marie Tan & Gregory Tan

#GivingTuesday Donations
Misako Miyagawa

Budokan of Los Angeles Donations
Akemi Arakaki
Beatrice & Louis Danoff
Scott Ito & Nan Lee
Kimberly Kawasaki
Janet Hasegawa
Gene Matsushita
Mike Murase & June Hibino
Erich Nakano & Sandra Viera
Margie & Michael Odanaka
Ruth & Bill Watanabe
Gideon Young

In-kind Donations
Buzy Q’s Quilts for Charity
Courtney Lee
Donna Wong

Vehicle Donations
Lonin & Rick Lew
Kenneth Park

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