AAJA San Diego presented awards to its chapter members for outstanding work that furthers the mission of the Asian American Journalists San Diego. Members were awardedÃ‚Â on Saturday, Dec. 11Ã‚Â at the end-of-the yearÃ‚Â Holiday Luncheon Meeting, where current and new members enjoyed a meal at Seafood Island, networked about all things related to journalism and discussed how to improve the chapter’s services to its members.
Here are this year’s award recipients:
- Board Member of the Year: Nikki Jimenez
- Chapter Member of the Year: Regina Ip
- Most Awesome AAJA President Ever: Hoa Quach
In case you weren’t able to attend, below is a transcript of speeches made by Chapter President Hoa Quach and Vice President Savy Hak:
HOA: It’s hard to believe I’ve been the president of AAJA San Diego for a full-term! Well, after having my first white hair, I can say everything that has come out of AAJA has been worth it because all of you are here with me today during the crazy holiday season.
As some of you may know, the purpose of AAJA has changed over the years. Nearly 30 years ago, AAJA was created to appropriately cover Asian Americans in the news and encourage Asian Americans to get into the news industry. Ten years ago, it came to San Diego to empower the Asian American journalists in our region and that mission hasn’t changed. But with the growing technology and the changes in the news industry, we want to know first, what do you need from AAJA as a journalist and second, what do you want to see from your Asian American journalists as a community leader.
We think we know what you want from our board members and me but we want to hear it from you. With that said, I’ll quickly introduce your board members for 2011 and I’ll tell you more about what AAJA has in stored for you next year.
I’ll be serving a second term as your president while Savy Hak is your vice president. Alex Tri Minh Nguyen is Treasurer, Nikki Jimenez is the Outreach Committee Chair, Dennis-Michael Broussard is the Fundraising Committee Chair, Lily Leung is the Programs Committee Chair, Regina Ip is Student Board Member and Jenny Hamel is National Board Representative.
On the advisory board is Lee Ann Kim, Michael Rocha and Darlynne Menkin Reyes.
We’re all excited and ready to work for you in 2011!
Even though the news industry is changing, AAJA is determined to stay alive and relevant that is why the theme for 2011 is “Vitality” but we need your support. So far, we have planned “How to get your story at the top of Google News” and “How to make your own website” workshops, plenty of mixers…because we hear we’re good at partying….and of course, San Diego’s Got Talent is set for April as our main fundraising event. But what else would you like from me and AAJA this year? We want to hear it straight from you. So after a brief presentation of two awards, each of you we’ll have an opportunity to speak to a board member one-on-one and offer your suggestions, comments and concerns.
The first award is “Board Member of the Year” and I’m honored to give this award to Nikki Jimenez. Nikki, who joined AAJA in college, quickly became involved as a leader when she graduated. She joined the board, revamped the Outreach Committee and works amazingly hard for AAJA in unimaginable ways. On behalf of the board members of AAJA – I’d like to present this award to Nikki. Thank you for your contributions to this chapter, AAJA as a whole and me as president and your friend – people like you inspire me to work harder for organizations like AAJA.
Now, Savy will present the member of the year award.
SAVY: The “Chapter Member of the Year” award goes to a young woman who works harder than most people I’ve met in my 30 years of existence. Regina Ip, a UCSD senior and a member of AAJA since high school, is currently an editor for The Guardian but she does so much for our chapter – from organizing workshops to maintaining our websites to fulfilling the administrative duties necessary for our chapter…Not only that, when Regina was informed of the financial problems at the national level – she donated $1,000 of her personal money to AAJA. Regina, you’re amazing…On behalf of AAJA, thank you so much for your hardwork and dedication.
I would also like to present another award and that award goes to Hoa for theÃ‚Â ”Most Awesome AAJA President Ever“Ã‚Â award. And she really deserves it!
Now IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been involved with AAJA since my high school days and I have gotten to know all the previous presidents and seen the transitions from president to president. Never have I seen a person who is as hardworking, passionate and committed as Hoa. She really goes above and beyond to make our chapter an important resource to its members and the local community.
She is involved with all important aspects of the board operations and commitments to the members and that includes making sure weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re using AAJA funds appropriately, ensuring we offer enough useful and relevant professional workshops for the members, and personally reaching out to members and the community to be a resource and offer her support.
She also will go out of her way to help students reaching out to her for advice and mentoring. She is always working on increasing membership and is very good with getting more members involved.
Not only that, she does all this as a volunteer while working full time for AOL Patch.com as an editor, and is also a board member for Rolling Readers, is a contributing writer for Global Voices, and volunteers helping refugee children to learn to read. And she manages to find time to bake delicious cookies and cakes for her board members, friends.
And with doing all this, she always manages to do it in style wearing the cutest outfits and perfectly matching shoes. So Hoa, you truly deserve this award for the Ã¢â‚¬Å“Most Awesome AAJA President Ever!Ã¢â‚¬Â
Thank you for all your hard work and dedication.
Ok, now, letÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s finish our lunch and the rest of the time is for networking. And during this time, please let us know personally how AAJA can serve you better next year and what you want out of our chapter. We really want to know. And thank you all for coming today and Happy Holidays.