October 18 Guest Lecture: Civil Rights Attorney Don Tamaki on Japanese American History

By ehkim

2012 Guest Lecture Series for Asian American/Asian Diaspora Studies 122:
“Japanese American History: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives”

Civil Rights Attorney Don Tamaki will be speaking on campus as a guest of the Asian
American/Asian Diaspora Studies 122 course. Students, staff, and faculty are welcome
to attend his lecture. For additional information, please contact Dr. Lisa Hirai Tsuchitani
at lhtsuchitani@berkeley.edu

October 18, 2012 (Thursday): “Redress, Reparations, and Beyond”
4:30 PM – 6:00 PM, 118 Barrows Hall

Mr. Don Tamaki graduated from U.C. Berkeley in 1973 with Phi Beta Kappa honors, and
received his J.D. from Boalt Hall in 1976. Upon graduation, Tamaki received the Reginald
Heber Smith Fellowship to practice poverty and civil rights law in San Jose. During his
fellowship, he would help to cofound the Asian Law Alliance, a public interest law firm
that represents thousands of low-income Asian Americans in Santa Clara County.

From 1980 to 1983, Tamaki served as the Executive Director of the Asian Law Caucus in
San Francisco, the nation’s first public interest law firm representing Asian Americans
in civil rights and poverty law cases. From 1983 to 1985, he served on the legal team
that re-opened the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case of Fred Korematsu, overturning
his criminal convictions for refusing to be incarcerated during World War II as a
result of Executive Order 9066. From 1998 to 2001, Tamaki served on the legal team
representing the Japanese American community in a suit against the San Francisco
YWCA arising out of California’s racist Alien Land laws, which barred immigrant Japanese
Americans from owning certain types of property.

Tamaki has been recognized for his achievements with the 1987 Loren Miller Award,
the State Bar of California’s highest recognition for providing legal services to the poor
and for working on civil rights issues; as well as the 2003 Trailblazer Award from the
National Asian Pacific Bar Association (NAPABA). He also has been selected to Northern
California Super Lawyers from 2004 through 2012, and has received the highest ratings
for competency and ethics from Martindale-Hubble.