Each year, the Asian American Cultural Center presents an Outstanding Asian American Alumni Award.

2024 Update: The AACC will not be accepting award nominations for this year. Please stay tuned for future opportunities.


Established in 2005, this honor recognizes alumni who have distinguished themselves through

  1. outstanding contributions to the Asian American community,
  2. exceptional success in their professional careers, and
  3. meritorious service supporting the mission of the university.

AACC alum receiving award from Director Chih


Nomination Guidelines

  • Describe how the nominee meets all three criteria for the award as listed above (links to external websites are welcomed).
  • Include full name and e-mail address for both nominee and nominator.
  • Email as an attached Word document to
  • Questions may be directed to

As in past years, a panel of students, alumni, faculty, and staff will determine the final selection. Nominations will be considered for three years if NOT selected for the award this year. The award will be presented publicly at the annual Asian American Leadership Awards Ceremony.

Past Recipients

  • 2020: Gordon Liao, social entrepreneur and activist
  • 2019: Deborah Ikeda, student affairs professional 
  • 2018: Anna Hui, public service 
  • 2017: Dennis Mondero, community advocate
  • 2016: Sandra Yamate, attorney and children’s book publisher
  • 2014: Jasjit Singh, civil rights advocate
  • 2013: Karin Wang, civil rights lawyer
  • 2012: Ho Chie Tsai, community organizer
  • 2011: Eboo Patel, interfaith organizer
  • 2010: Kelly Tsai, spoken word artist
  • 2009: Yoshi Hayasaki, hall of fame gymnastics coach
  • 2008: Betty Lee Sung, Chinese American studies pioneer
  • 2007: KW Lee, dean of Asian American journalists
  • 2006: Ang Lee and Jane Lin, film director and medical researcher
  • 2005: Iris Chang, best-selling author and journalist