OBSERVANCE OF ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH 2009

UNCLASSIFIED//
ROUTINE
R 011535Z MAY 09
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FM CNO WASHINGTON DC//N00//
TO NAVADMIN
NAVADMIN 132/09
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SUBJ/OBSERVANCE OF ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH 2009//



RMKS/1.  IN MAY WE CELEBRATE THE MANY CONTRIBUTIONS OF AMERICANS OF 
ASIAN AND PACIFIC ISLANDS DESCENT TO OUR NATION AND OUR NAVY.
THIS YEAR, WE CELEBRATE WITH THE NATIONAL THEME, "LEADERSHIP TO MEET 
THE CHALLENGES OF A CHANGING WORLD."

2.  CONGRESS PROPOSED AND PRESIDENT JIMMY CARTER SIGNED A JOINT 
RESOLUTION ESTABLISHING THE FIRST 10 DAYS OF MAY AS ASIAN/PACIFIC 
AMERICAN HERITAGE WEEK IN 1978.  TWELVE YEARS LATER PRESIDENT GEORGE H. 
W. BUSH EXPANDED THE OBSERVANCE TO ENCOMPASS THE FULL MONTH OF MAY, AND 
IN 1992, MAY WAS OFFICIALLY DESIGNATED "ASIAN/PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE 
MONTH."

3.  THE TIMING OF ASIAN/PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH COINCIDES WITH 
THE ARRIVAL OF THE FIRST JAPANESE IMMIGRANTS ON 7 MAY 1843, AND THE 
COMPLETION OF THE TRANSCONTINENTAL RAILROAD ON 10 MAY 1869, CONSTRUCTED 
LARGELY BY CHINESE IMMIGRANT WORKERS.  OUR CELEBRATION ENCOMPASSES MORE 
THAN AMERICANS OF JAPANESE AND CHINESE DESCENT; IT INCLUDES THOSE OF 
FAR EAST OR SOUTHEAST ASIA, INDIAN, AND THE PACIFIC ISLANDS OF 
MELANESIA, MICRONESIA, AND POLYNESIA AS WELL.

4.  "LEADERSHIP TO MEET THE CHALLENGES OF A CHANGING WORLD," HAS BEEN 
EXEMPLIFIED BY MANY ASIAN/PACIFIC AMERICAN SAILORS THROUGHOUT OUR NAVAL 
HISTORY.  THE FOLLOWING ARE JUST A FEW OF THE MANY EXAMPLES:
A.  CHINESE AMERICAN WILLIAM AH HANG, WHO IN 1863 BECAME ONE OF THE 
FIRST ASIAN AMERICANS TO ENLIST IN THE U.S. NAVY.
B.  NAVY FIREMAN 2ND CLASS TELESFORO DE LA CRUZ TRINIDAD, A FILIPINO 
AMERICAN, WHO EARNED THE MEDAL OF HONOR FOR EXTRAORDINARY HEROISM 
RESCUING SHIPMATES FROM THE INFERNO OF A BOILER EXPLOSION ONBOARD USS 
SAN DIEGO, 21 JANUARY 1915.
C.  RADM GORDON PAI'EA CHUNG-HOON, OF MIXED CHINESE AND HAWAIIAN 
HERITAGE, RECEIVED THE NAVY CROSS AND SILVER STAR FOR CONSPICUOUS 
GALLANTRY AND EXTRAORDINARY HEROISM AS COMMANDING OFFICER OF USS 
SIGSBEE FROM MAY 1944 TO OCTOBER 1945.  ON 14 APRIL 1945, WHILE ON 
RADAR PICKET STATION OFF OKINAWA, A KAMIKAZE CRASHED INTO SIGSBEE, 
REDUCING HER STARBOARD ENGINE TO FIVE KNOTS AND KNOCKING OUT THE SHIP'S 
PORT ENGINE AND STEERING CONTROL.  DESPITE THE DAMAGE, ADMIRAL CHUNG-
HOON, THEN A COMMANDER, VALIANTLY KEPT HIS ANTI-AIRCRAFT BATTERIES 
DELIVERING PROLONGED AND EFFECTIVE FIRE AGAINST THE CONTINUOUS ENEMY 
AIR ATTACK WHILE SIMULTANEOUSLY DIRECTING THE DAMAGE CONTROL EFFORTS 
THAT ALLOWED SIGSBEE TO MAKE PORT UNDER HER OWN POWER.
USS CHUNG-HOON SAILS TODAY IN HIS HONOR.
D.  ET1(SS) JOHN YOSHIKAWA KUAPAHI RECEIVED COMMENDATION FOR KNOWING 
AND WILLINGLY RISKING HIS LIFE AND POSSIBLY PREVENTING A MAJOR DISASTER 
BY HIS HEROIC EFFORTS IN FIGHTING AN ENGINE ROOM FIRE ON USS SARGO.
E.  ASTRONAUT AND NAVY CAPTAIN SUNITA WILLIAMS, WHO IS OF INDIAN 
HERITAGE.
F.  CAPT MARY J. LOGSDON, THE FIRST ASIAN AMERICAN AND FIRST WOMAN 
COMMANDER OF NAVAL SURFACE WARFARE CENTER, CARDEROCK DIVISION - NAVAL 
SHIP SYSTEMS ENGINEERING STATION.
G.  VADM HARRY B. HARRIS, JR., OF JAPANESE DESCENT, WHO SERVES AS 
DEPUTY CHIEF OF NAVAL OPERATIONS, COMMUNICATION NETWORKS (CNO N6).

5.  TODAY, ABOUT 55,000 INDIVIDUALS OF ASIAN/PACIFIC ISLAND DESCENT 
SERVE IN THE NAVY'S TOTAL FORCE - ACTIVE, RESERVE, AND CIVILIAN.
AS LEADERS, WE MUST TAKE TIME TO RECOGNIZE THE CONTRIBUTIONS OF THESE 
EXTRAORDINARY MEN AND WOMEN, AND ALL WHO SERVE IN OUR DIVERSE NAVY.

6.  WHEN CONSIDERING OUR ROLE AS LEADERS AND DETERMINING A ROUTE FOR 
FUTURE SUCCESS, IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT WE SEEK OUT MENTORS FOR INPUT, 
ADVICE, AND COUNSEL.  THE NAVAL OFFICER MENTORSHIP ASSOCIATION (NOMA), 
WHICH WILL CELEBRATE ITS ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY THIS YEAR, IS A VALUABLE 
SOURCE OF MENTORSHIP AND GUIDANCE FOR OFFICERS OF ASIAN AND PACIFIC 
ISLAND DESCENT.  ADDITIONALLY, COMMANDS ARE ENCOURAGED TO CELEBRATE 
ASIAN/PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE MONTH THROUGH SPONSORSHIP OF LOCAL 
ACTIVITIES AND EXHIBITS, PUBLISHING ITEMS OF INTEREST IN COMMAND 
BULLETINS, AND SUPPORTING COMMAND AND INDIVIDUAL PARTICIPATION IN 
APPROPRIATE OBSERVANCES AND EVENTS THROUGHOUT THE YEAR, TO INCLUDE:
A.  FEDERAL ASIAN/PACIFIC AMERICAN COUNCIL ANNUAL SYMPOSIUM 
(WWW.FAPAC.ORG), 11-15 MAY 2009, HOUSTON, TX.
B.  ASIAN AMERICAN GOVERNMENT EXECUTIVES NETWORK
(WWW.AAGEN.ORG)
SUMMIT AND LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE, 24-25 JUNE 2009, ARLINGTON, VA.
C.  PHILIPPINE NURSES ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA 
(WWW.PHILIPPINENURSESAA.ORG), 15-19 JULY 2009, BALTIMORE, MD.
D.  ASIAN AND PACIFIC ISLANDER AMERICAN SCHOLARSHIP FUND 
(WWW.APIASF.ORG), DATE TO BE DETERMINED OCTOBER 2009.
E.  12TH ANNUAL FILIPINAS MAGAZINE ACHIEVEMENT AWARDS 
(WWW.FILIPINASMAG.COM), DATE TO BE DETERMINED OCTOBER 2009, SAN 
FRANCISCO.
F.  NATIONAL ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN BAR ASSOCIATION (WWW.NAPABA.ORG), 
18-22 NOVEMBER 2009, BOSTON, MA.  I ENCOURAGE YOU TO SUBMIT YOUR 
SAILORS AND CIVILIANS FOR AWARDS WITH THESE AND OTHER SIMILAR 
ORGANIZATIONS.  VISIT 
WWW.NPC.NAVY.MIL/COMMANDSUPPORT/DIVERSITY/AWARDS.HTM FOR SPECIFICS.

7.  FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT ASIAN/PACIFIC AMERICAN HERITAGE AND FOR 
MATERIALS TO HELP PLAN YOUR OBSERVANCE, VISIT THE FOLLOWING WEB SITES:
A.  LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, WWW.LOC.GOV/TOPICS/ASIANPACIFIC/.
B.  DEFENSE EQUAL OPPORTUNITY MANAGEMENT INSTITUTE (DEOMI), 
WWW.DEOMI.ORG/SPECIALOBSERVANCE/PRESENTATIONS_CATEGORY.CF
M.
C.  COMMISSION ON ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN AFFAIRS, WWW.CAPAA.WA.GOV.
MENTORING RESOURCES ARE AVAILABLE AT THE NAVAL OFFICER MENTORSHIP 
ASSOCIATION (NOMA) WEB SITE: WWW.NAVALOFFICERMENTORSHIP.ORG.

8.  MORE INFORMATION ON DIVERSITY CONFERENCES, EVENTS, AWARDS, AND 
OBSERVANCES IS AVAILABLE AT THE NAVY DIVERSITY WEBSITE:
WWW.NPC.NAVY.MIL/COMMANDSUPPORT/DIVERSITY/.

9.  POINT OF CONTACT IS LCDR ELIZABETH ZIMMERMANN, OPNAV N134, AT (703) 
614-5392, OR EMAIL AT ELIZABETH.ZIMMERMANN(AT)NAVY.MIL.

10.  RELEASED BY ADMIRAL G. ROUGHEAD, CHIEF OF NAVAL OPERATIONS.//

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