The Fairfax County Asian American History Project (FCAAHP) will co-sponsor the 5th Naturalization Ceremony on May 24 for 100 New Americans at the Fairfax County Government Center in Virginia.
“This event is in honor of the Asian American Heritage Month in Fairfax County,” said FCAAHP Founding Chairman Corazon Sandoval Foley. “It’s a key program of the county’s largest minority group since 1990, to promote a strong, integrated and inclusive community.”
Event partners include the Fairfax County government, headed by County Chairman Sharon Bulova and the US Citizens and Immigration Service (USCIS).
Chairman Sharon Bulova also heads the bipartisan FCAAHP Advisory Council with Braddock Supervisor John Cook, along with Honorary Director Congressman Gerry Connolly. The private sector, including Cox Communications, BASE and Amour LLC, also supports FCAAHP programs,
The event is free and open to the public. For more details, visit the FCAAHP website: www.fairfaxstories.sharepoint.com. FCAAHP will also formally launch the second volume in its on-going project, “VALOR: Asian American Soldiers, Police, Firefighters Protecting Fairfax County and Our Nation,” written by Founding Chairman Foley, and is available at Amazon.com.
The event begins with a pre-ceremony program from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., honoring the Congressional Gold Medal Award to the WWII Japanese American Veterans of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, 100th Infantry Battalion and the Military Intelligence Service (MIS) units. Pre-ceremony event emcee is FCAAHP member and county official Jaya Kori.
A video honoring the late Senator Daniel K. Inouye will be shown, followed by presentations by WWII Japanese American Veterans Terry Shima and long-time county citizen Grant Ichikawa. Other speakers are: Gerald Yamada, president of the Japanese American Veterans Association (JAVA) and Barbara Nekoba, one of 120,000 Japanese Americans interned during WWII, a historical wrong addressed by the Civil Liberties Act of 1988.
The ceremony starts at 11 a.m. with the welcome address Robert Nakamoto, former JAVA president, followed by remarks from Chairman Bulova,
The Inspirational Message will be given by Dr. Thu Huu Bui, former assistant principal of JEB Stuart and George Marshal high schools and Vietnamese American community leader.
USCIS officials Sarah Taylor and Kimberly Zanotti will lead the presentation of candidates and the Oath of Allegiance. Delegate Mark Keam, the first Asian American state delegate from Fairfax County, has been invited to lead the Pledge of Allegiance.
The ceremony will be moderated by FCAAHP Founding Chairman Foley. The New Americans and their families will celebrate the day with a noon reception at the Forum. A cultural performance will be presented by the Hawaiian Stars of the Burke/West Springfield Senior Center Without Walls.
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