- Densho Staff
- Densho Board
Tom Ikeda, Executive Director
Tom is the founding Executive Director of Densho. He is a sansei (third generation Japanese American) who was born and raised in Seattle. Tom's parents and grandparents were incarcerated during World War II at Minidoka, Idaho. In addition to leading the organization over the last 15 years, Tom has conducted over 200 video-recorded, oral history interviews with Japanese Americans. Prior to working at Densho, Tom was a General Manager at Microsoft Corporation in the Multimedia Publishing Group. Tom also worked as a research engineer developing hemodializers (artificial kidneys) with Cordis Dow Corporation and as a financial analyst at the Weyerhaeuser Company. Tom graduated from the University of Washington with a BS in Chemical Engineering, BA in Chemistry and an MBA. He has received numerous awards for his historical contributions, including the Humanities Washington Award for outstanding achievement in the public humanities, the National JACL Japanese American of the Biennium award for Education, and the Microsoft Alumni Fellows Award.
Geoff Froh, Deputy Director
Though trained as a social scientist, Geoff has over 15 years of experience developing technology and information management strategies for a variety of for-profit and non-profit ventures, ranging from small think-tanks and startups to the Department of State, the Adobe Corporation and his Holiness the Dalai Lama. Most recently, Geoff served as the Chief Information Officer of Health Alliance International, an NGO engaged in global health work. Born and raised in the Washington, DC metro area, Geoff has a BA in Asian Studies from the University of Virginia
and an MS in Information Management from the University of Washington. His interests range from information
science to political thought in 19th century Japan, and -- when he is not
chained to a computer -- Geoff enjoys engaging in ill-conceived mountain-biking
Dana Hoshide, Production Manager
Dana is a Yonsei who was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, but grew up in Seattle. She first learned about the incarceration in part from her maternal and paternal grandparents who were incarcerated at Tule Lake and Minidoka camps during World War II. She graduated from the University of Washington with a BA in American Ethnic Studies and has worked for Densho ever since. Her work with the project includes videography, digitizing visual history interviews, and processing interview transcripts and historic photographs and documents.
Geoffrey Jost, Senior Software Developer
Geoffrey graduated from California State University Fresno with a BA in Linguistics and minors in Music and Japanese, and a year's study at Waseda University in Tokyo. He then joined the JET Program and taught English in Kawai-cho, Nara Prefecture, following that with a Masters in Library & Information Studies from the University of California Los Angeles. Because working in a library would be too obvious, he then became a web developer, cutting his teeth in the computer games industry before moving to the Japanese American National Museum, where he was the primary software developer for all the Museum's web sites including DiscoverNikkei.org. His first computer was a TRS-80 Model I.
Naoko Magasis, Office Manager/Event Coordinator
Naoko Magasis was born in Kobe, Seattle's sister city, and raised in Kyoto, Japan. She graduated from Kobe College with a BA in English and worked in Osaka before she came to the U.S. in 1987. She manages Densho's fundraising events, processes financial transactions and reports, and translates materials.
Brian Niiya, Content Director
Brian Niiya is a Sansei born and raised in Southern California to
Nisei parents who were born and raised in Hawai'i. His maternal
grandfather was one of the small number of Japanese Americans from
Hawai'i who were interned, and his mother's family went to Japan on an
exchange ship during the war. Brian is a graduate of Harvey Mudd
College (a hard core science and engineering school, Mudd has somehow
produced two well known Japanese Americanists, both of whom once
worked for Densho) and holds an M.A. in Asian American Studies from
UCLA. His professional life has been dedicated to Japanese American
public history and information management, having held various
positions with the UCLA Asian American Studies Center, the Japanese
American National Museum, and the Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai'i
that have involved managing collections, curating exhibitions,
developing public programs, and producing videos, books, and websites.
He has also written widely read newspaper columns for the Rafu
Shimpo, Nikkei West, and the Pacific Citizen and edited the
Encyclopedia of Japanese American History, published in 1993 with a
second edition in 2000. He has lived and worked in Honolulu since
Caitlin Oiye, Photo and Document Collections Manager
Caitlin Oiye is a yonsei who was born and raised in Seattle, Washington. Her interest in the incarceration stems from her paternal family's experiences at Tule Lake incarceration camp. She graduated from the University of Washington with a BA in History and from Western Washington University with an MA in History/Archives and Records Management. Caitlin is also in the process of earning her Master of Library and Information Science from San Jose State University. Before joining Densho she worked at Windermere, Lane Powell, and, most recently, King County where she focused much of her time on electronic records management systems.
Natasha Varner, Communications Manager
Growing up in Arizona, Natasha was aware of Japanese American incarceration from an early age but gained a deeper understanding of it after moving to Seattle in 2013 and while working to promote books on the subject at the University of Washington Press. Prior to her move to Seattle, Natasha worked at the University of Arizona Press where she ran First Peoples: New Directions in Indigenous Studies, an innovative collaboration aimed at supporting first-time authors and building community with Indigenous studies scholars and publishers. She is currently completing a dissertation on the creation of racial stereotypes in 20th century Mexico. Both her academic and professional work is motivated by an interest in bringing marginalized histories to light through the printed word, digital media, and other creative forms of expression.
Nina Wallace, Special Projects
Nina is a yonsei who grew up in Phoenix, Arizona. Her maternal grandmother, one of six children to the only Japanese American family in a small town a few miles west of the Washington-Idaho border, was not incarcerated during World War II but recalls the day her father was arrested by the FBI. Nina graduated from Seattle University in 2009, where she worked as a consultant in the campus writing center and received a BA in English and Philosophy. She manages Densho's contacts, processes donations, and transcribes oral history interviews.
Virginia Yamada, Grant Manager/Visual History Coordinator
Virginia's first meaningful exposure to the incarceration came from the firsthand accounts and poems of her mother-in-law: a human rights activist and gifted story teller, who was incarcerated as a teenager at Minidoka with her mother and three brothers, while her father was held at Crystal City. In college, Virginia turned her interest in numerous social science subjects into a BA in Cultural Anthropology from UC Santa Barbara. Presently, she likes to think that this background is put to good use as she manages Densho's grants and coordinates the visual history interviews.
Ron Tanemura, Board President
Ron Tanemura is a retired partner and former advisor director for Goldman, Sachs & Co. He was also a managing director at Salomon Brothers and Deutsche Bank. During his twenty years in banking he managed a variety of fixed income sales and trading businesses in London, New York, and Tokyo, and was one of the architects of the Credit Derivatives market. Ron is an active board member of Social Venture Partners, which advances the common good by engaging a community of philanthropic leaders, strengthening local nonprofits, and catalyzing system change. Ron received a B.A. in Computer Science from U.C. Berkeley where he also serves as a Trustee of the U.C. Berkeley Foundation.
William (Bill) Kazuo Bryant, Envision Ventures
Bill Bryant is a sansei who was born and raised in Honolulu. As a Hawaiian resident, his mother was not incarcerated, but she remembers Pearl Harbor Day when she came home to find her father burning "everything Japanese" in the backyard because "there was going to be trouble." Bill is currently CEO of Envision Ventures. Previously, he was a partner with a large international venture capital firm, Atlas Ventures, and has been involved as a founder, board member, and investor with a number of software and Internet startups in the Seattle area.
Mark Fukunaga, Servco Pacific
Mark Fukunaga is the Chairman and CEO of Servco Pacific, Inc., whose core businesses are automotive retailing and distribution, appliance distribution, and insurance services. He also oversees Servco's real estate and private equity investments. Mark joined Servco in 1988, prior to which he was a corporate attorney with a New York firm serving international clients. Previously, he worked as a legislative aide for Senator Daniel Inouye. He sits on a number of boards, including Fender Musical Instruments Corporation, Hoku Scientific, Nippon Golden Network, Children's Discovery Center, Contemporary Museum, Hawaii Business Roundtable, Honolulu Academy of Arts, Japan America Society, and the Japanese American National Museum.
Mari Horita, ArtsFund
Mari Horita is the CEO of ArtsFund, an organization that strengthens the community by supporting the arts through leadership, advocacy and grant making. Prior to joining ArtsFund, Mari was the Managing Director of the Seattle Office of Major, Lindsey & Africa, and practiced real estate law with K&L Gates and Dorsey Whitney. She also has an extensive background in nonprofit and community service and currently serves on the board of United Way of King County. Mari holds a B.A. in Asian Studies from Pomona College, a J.D. from the University of Washington School of Law, and a Masters in Nonprofit Leadership from Seattle University. Mari's mother, Lillian Hayashi, was interned at Tule Lake and Minidoka during the war.
Tom Ikeda, Densho
Gene S. Kanamori, Keiro Senior HealthCare
Gene S. Kanamori is the Director of Human Resources of Keiro Senior HealthCare (KSHC). Prior to joining KSHC, Gene spent 28 years at United Parcel Service as the Director of Human Resources for different regions around the country. He also spent two years at Pepsi Bottling Group as the Health and Safety manager. Gene has served on many boards such as United Way of Greater New Orleans, Urban League of Greater New Orleans, JACL of Greater Seattle, Organization of Chinese Americans of Greater Seattle, and the Japanese American Chamber of Commerce of Washington State. He is currently involved as a Board of Governor for the Japanese American National Museum and is a co-founder of the Sansei Legacy of Southern California. Other organizations that he is active with are Asians for Miracle Marrow Match, Grateful Crane Ensemble, Japanese American Cultural and Community Center and the Go for Broke National Educational Center. Gene resides in Cerritos, California, with his wife Vickie and two children, Traci and Lance.
Tomio Moriguchi, Uwajimaya
Tomio Moriguchi is chairman of Uwajimaya, Inc., the largest family-owned Asian food and merchandise business in the Pacific Northwest. His father opened the first store in 1928 and restarted the business in Seattle's International District after the family was released from Tule Lake camp. A respected civic volunteer, Tomio has served on advisory and governing boards for numerous business, educational, and cultural organizations, including the International District Improvement Association, Japan-America Society of Washington State, KCTS Television, LEAP (Leadership Education for Asian Pacific), National Japanese American Memorial Foundation, Nikkei Concerns, Seattle Art Museum, and University of Washington. Tomio was recognized by the YMCA in 2001 for his many years of volunteerism.
Scott Oki, Oki Developments
Scott Oki is the founder, chairman, and CEO of Oki Developments, Inc., and is a professed entrepreneur, venture capitalist, philanthropist, and community activist. His personal mission statement is "to marry my passion for things entrepreneurial with things philanthropic in a way that encourages others to do the same." Prior to founding Oki Developments, Scott retired after ten years with Microsoft Corporation where he held a variety of executive positions. Scott serves on dozens of advisory boards and boards of directors for both for-profit and not-for-profit organizations. He has founded or co-founded more than a dozen not-for-profit organizations.
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