NVC Newsletter

NVC Foundation Scholarship Recipients

by Debbie Kashino
March 2016, Volume 66, Issue 3

NVCF Scholarship Program Announcement

Congratulations to the four outstanding recipients of this year’s NVCF Scholarship Program.  The scholarships were awarded at the 70th annual NVC Installation Luncheon held on March 19, 2016 at the Rainier Golf and Country Club.


Kacey Higa is the daughter of Helen and Les Higa.  The Higa family were active members of the organization for several years before they moved back to their hometown of Irvine, California.  During their time with us we grew to regard the Higas as part of our NVC/NVCF family.  Kacey is attending her last year of high school at University High School maintaining a 3.95 gpa.

While in Seattle, Kacey helped at the Chow Mein and Luau fundraisers, the Memorial Day Service and helped create the Vietnam Veterans tribute film.  At school she is active in the Key Club, the Honor Society, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, and she also spent many hours volunteering at the Japanese Presbyterian Church.

Kacey hopes to attend the University of Southern California majoring in Biology.


Sarah Williams is the daughter of Kathleen Okazaki and Roy Williams.  Her grandparents were long time NVC members, Fleazy and Jean Okazaki.  Sarahe attends Yale University where she maintains a 3.87 gpa majoring in Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry.

Many of us remember Sarah as a young girl often accompanying her mother to help at our various events such as the Chow Mein Dinner and the Memorial Wall Dedication Ceremony.  At Yale, Sarah has been involved in a program called Ready Set Launch College Consulting where she mentors low-income students through the college process.  She also does ESL Tutoring and helps with the Yale Club 2 Soccer Intramurals Program.

Sarah hopes to complete an M.D./P.H.D. and strives to work in a field that will help people live healthier lives.

Jayna Van Stone is another recipient of the Shiro Kashino Memorial Scholarship.  Jayna is the daughter of Lynne Okazaki and James Van Stone.  She is the granddaughter of Frank and Itsumi Okazaki and great niece to Mary and George Kozu.  Jayna attends International Community School in Kirkland and has a 3.4 gpa.

Jayna is a competitive swimmer spending much of her time training for national level competitions.  In addition she helps with homeless feedings with the Seattle Presbyterian Church, does volunteer work with the Kubota Gardens Foundation and has helped at the NVC Chowmein Fundraisers.  At school Jayna is involved in Key Club, is the secretary for the Bellevue Club Swim Team and is a member of the Lake Washington High School Swim team where she was given the MVP Award for 2015.

Jayna plans to attend Seattle University majoring in Business Finance with a minor in Mathematics.

Kellie Yoshihara is also a Shiro Kashino Memorial Scholarship recipient.  She is the daughter of Joe and Rita Yoshihara and granddaughter of Bob Yoshihara. Kellie attends Azusa Pacific University in Southern California.  Kellie is majoring in Applied Exercise and Science.  Her accumulated gpa is 3.94.

Kellie is an avid soccer player, playing throughout high school and now in college.  She is involved with Feeding the Homeless and helping with special needs students.  In high school she was given the Honorable Mention All-Conference Scholar Athlete for 2014.

Kellie’s future goals are to go on to Physician Assistant graduate school focusing on working with children as a pediatric assistant.

Thank you to the panel of judges who helped this year.  They are: Diane Yoshihara Bradshaw, May Sasaki, Kris Hiraoka. Carmen Chan, Wendi Coombs, Bruce Inaba and Louise Kashino.  Please take the time to read the excellent legacy essays our recipients have written.  They will all be published in upcoming issues of the NVC newsletters.