By JACL National
JACL is excited to welcome Alex Shinkawa as the new Daniel K. Inouye Fellow. Shinkawa, a resident of California, will be based in the organization’s Washington, D.C., office.
“I am extremely excited to be the new Daniel K. Inouye policy fellow with JACL! I hope that through this fellowship, I will be able to advocate on behalf of the community that has helped to raise me and fight for issues that are important to Japanese Americans as well as other intersected minority groups,” he said. “This fellowship represents an opportunity for me to meet with other accomplished and passionate Asian American advocates and hear their stories and learn from their careers.”
Shinkawa is a recent graduate from the University of California, Santa Barbara, with a double major with honors in Asian American Studies and political science. He was born in Sunnyvale, Calif., and his interests focus on immigration policies and community building.
On campus, he was a member of the Political Science Honors Society, and he worked to spread awareness about the Japanese American community as the culture chair for the university’s Nikkei Student Union.
He is also a past member of the Campus United party and worked as a campaign manager for his classmate. During his senior year, Shinkawa wrote a research thesis on the effects of hate crimes on Asian American civic organizations in the California Bay Area during Covid-19.
Shinkawa has a passion for community development and has worked as an intern for the Japantown Community Congress of San Jose to fight gentrification and promote community safety.
In addition, he has volunteered at the Asian Law Alliance and helped at-risk members of the community with filing N-400 citizen applications and DACA forms. On a more national level, Shinkawa is a former development intern for OCA Asian Pacific American Advocates and worked to help with the organization’s 2020 online summit.
Shinkawa hopes that this fellowship will give him the opportunity to meet with legislators and activists within the Asian American community in order to hear their stories. He also hopes that he can participate in nonprofit work centered on immigration reform and see new ways to change policy in order to help people.
Welcome, Alex, to JACL!