Magic Continues at TACL-LID Camp

It ended with a pinch, a squeeze, or even a simple hand on a shoulder. “Touch somebody who has made an impact on your life. Touch somebody who made you laugh. Touch somebody who is now your friend”. Such a simple gesture left 42 youths with a deep connection and impact after attending TACL-Leadership Identity Development (LID) Camp at UC San Diego during the month of August. It had been 10 years since I last attended LID Camp and it was now my first time serving as a camp counselor. I was…

On Two Decades of Blacklava and Celebrating the “Other”: A Taiwanese American Perspective

I recently attended the 20th anniversary celebration of Blacklava, an online store for “all things Asian American,” which was founded by Japanese American Ryan Suda. I had heard about this event at least a month prior, and even though it was taking place in Los Angeles, I was compelled to fly down from the San Francisco Bay area, where I live, in order to celebrate this occasion. “But it’s just a T-shirt company,” you may say. “And it’s not even a Taiwanese American thing…” I’m…

In Memory of my Son, Keimay Yang – A Devoted Supporter of ITASA

I am Agnes Wu, and I would like to share a story about my son, Keimay Yang, which happened nearly five years ago… one month before he passed away. As Ho Chie Tsai, the founder of TaiwaneseAmerican.org and a friend of my son, shared with me, “Keimay spent more time thinking about others, not just friends and family, but even strangers. His true character really shined.” It is this story about Keimay’s values that I hope will resonate with the ITASA community: One late afternoon in September…

Heart and Soul: Introducing American Citizens for Taiwan

Recently, I stopped by Seattle and caught up with a couple of the organizers behind a new advocacy-oriented website and organization called American Citizens for Taiwan. In a quiet corner of a University of Washington cafe, Brock and Julie Freeman sat with me and shared their perspectives on and motivation for creating this online social media tool to mobilize the broader American community in support of Taiwan's democracy. As I listened to each share about their own personal thoughts and journeys,…

A Snapshot of the Taiwanese American Community and Immigrant Diaspora

I recently came across the website Migration Information Source, which provides analysis of international migration data and trends. They recently published a document entitled "Taiwanese Immigrants in the United States," using the most recent Census data, including the more comprehensive 2010 American Community Survey. As many of you might remember, TaiwaneseAmerican.org and many of our community's organizations worked hard to encourage people to check the "Other" box and write in "Taiwanese"…

Inside NATWA II: An Interview with Co-founder Joann Lo

Guest contributor Hanna Huang, interviews Joann Lo, one of the two founding co-coordinators of the North American Taiwanese Women's Association 2nd generation group (NATWA II) during their 2011 National Convention, which took place in St. Louis, MO. NATWA II's mission consists of establishing a network for 1.5- and 2nd-generation Taiwanese American and Canadian women in order to cultivate and promote talents among young Taiwanese American and Canadian women and to preserve Taiwanese culture and identity.…

Inspire, Empower, and Activate: ITASA’s “Coming of Age”

By: Amy Lee & Hanna Huang It started with something simple: the idea that Taiwanese American college students from across the nation needed an organized way to get together and celebrate what it meant to be “Taiwanese.” Throughout the eighteen years since the Intercollegiate Taiwanese American Students Association’s (ITASA) creation, the organization has grown from a private startup by a small group of founders to one of the oldest and biggest intercollegiate Asian American organizations…

Reflecting on the Taiwanese American Citizens League’s 25 Year History and Legacy

by Erica Ling On a recent summer’s night, over 300 members of the Taiwanese community gathered to celebrate the 25th birthday of the Taiwanese American Citizens League (TACL). At the request of Ben Ling (TACL National President), who had been working tirelessly in directing the entire event, several mentors, interns, and board members arrived early to help set up. As we walked through the doors of Café Pinot, it was clear that the hustle and bustle of preparation was well underway (and…

Introducing the Next Chapter of the Taiwanese American Student Movement: JTASA

2010 has been an exciting year for Taiwanese America... from the release of Formosa Betrayed to the 2010 Taiwanese Census campaign to TACL's 25th anniversary. Now, there's one more thing to add to the mix. Behold JTASA, the Junior Taiwanese American Student Association. Born in the minds of two high school students and an ambitious camp director, after a summer's worth of sweat, tears, and high blood pressure, JTASA has finally materialized as a national high school organization designed…