2019 Gala: 25 Groundbreaking Years

April 11, 2019 @ 6:00PM — 9:00PM

AIISF's annual gala "Immigrant Dreams: Hero Voices" and Immigrant Heritage Awards celebration

2019 Gala: 25 Groundbreaking Years image

Support AIISF's efforts to tell the story of Pacific Immigration nationwide!

There are currently no tickets available for this event, but you can still make a donation.


Co-Chairs Claudine Cheng, Vish Mishra, and Gerrye Wong cordially invite you to join us for Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation's 2019 Annual Gala.

Immigrant Dreams: Hero Voices

This year we celebrate 25 Groundbreaking Years. Since 1994, AIISF has been recognized as a national leader in preserving immigrant history. From reaching National Historic Landmark status, to the ongoing restoration of the Immigration Station, we celebrate the achievements and milestones made by the Foundation over the years. We also recognize the heroes who have played an important role in raising public awareness of the Immigration Station and all those who made the journey to America through the Pacific.

We also recognize that 2019 sits at a crossroads. Ten years ago (February 15, 2009), AIISF helped reopen the Detention Barracks with interpretive exhibits, reconstructed outdoor stairway, new landscaping around the property, and terraces built on the former Administration building site.

This year, site construction will conclude on the Immigration Station Hospital. With community and government support, the former Hospital will be transformed into the Pacific Coast Immigration Center. The museum is scheduled to open Summer 2020.

Immigrant Heritage Awards

This year, AIISF will recognize with its Immigrant Heritage Award, special immigrant Americans whose work in the Bay Area bears witness to the exceptional contributions of Asian immigrants - a group once excluded from entry into the United States.


Dennis immigrated to the Bay Area from the Philippines. He became a business leader as an accounting partner at Deloitte and a civic leader as the first person of color elected as President of the Commonwealth Club of California, and the President of the Cal Business Alumni Association. He also served on the boards of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce and the San Francisco Ballet. He currently serves as the Board Chair of Recology, the Chair of the Northern California Chapter of the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD), and as the Chair of the San Francisco Chapter of Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs Association (APAPA). He also currently serves as a Member of the Board of the Committee of 100.

  • PHILANTHROPY - Vijay Amritraj

Vijay was appointed United Nations Messenger of Peace in 2001 and is the only Asian to receive the United Nation’s prestigious Pierre Coubertin Award. He was awared the Padma Shri by the Government of India for enhancing India's image overseas. In 2006, Vijay founded The Vijay Amritraj Foundation, an international charity serving the destitute of India. In addition to his philanthropy work, Vijay is an accomplished ESPN anchor and host, actor, and tennis player. Among his sports accomplishments, Vijay has repeated as a Quarterfinalist at Wimbledon and the US Open. Vijay also had the distinct honor of carrying the Olympic Torch at the 1988 Seoul Games.


Thuy and her family fled their native Vietnam by boat at the end of the Vietnam War, winding up in a refugee camp in Guam before being allowed to settle in America. Now an award-winning Bay Area broadcast journalist, she currently co-hosts KQED "Newsroom."

Further, on this special evening – we wish to acknowledge the dedication and service of volunteer docents, Joe and Eliz Chan with the Spirit of Angel Island Award. For the past decade, they have led tours for thousands of school children and other visitors at the immigration station.

The 2019 award recipients will join previous honorees: I.M. Pei, Norman Mineta, Dr. Herbert Yee, The Honorable Mazie K. Hirono, and C.C. & Regina Yin.

Ticket Information

Sponsorship Acknowledgements

With the purchase of our a sponsorship, the attendee will be acknowledged by name in all event materials (print and electronic), on the AIISF event website page, and on event signage. For printed acknowledgements, tickets must be purchased on or before April 1, 2019. Tickets purchased after the cutoff date for printing will receive all digital acknowledgements associated with their sponsorship level.

Tax Deduction

AIISF is an approved nonprofit under Sec. 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code, tax identification number 94-2909759. Your contribution to the gala is tax deductible, to the extent permitted by law, less goods and services received by attendees.