The PSF Society is run primarily by a group of committed volunteers comprising the board of directors, several committees, and hundreds of other volunteers during Festival weekend.
Our active and dedicated volunteer Board of Directors sit on four volunteer committees (Advocacy, Programming, Fundraising, Festival) along with other community members. Our directors bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the Society and share a love of the arts, Japanese culture and food! (See info on our community cookbook on our merch page!)
Edward Takayanagi :: President
Carly Yoshida-Butryn :: Vice President
Hiromi Grace Mikasa :: Treasurer
Miko Hoffman :: Secretary
Naomi Ostwald Kawamura :: Director
Shoko Kitano :: Director
Mike Okada :: Director
Colin Chan :: Past President
Originally from Alberta, Edward Takayanagi attended university in Japan on the Monbusho Scholarship and lived in Kyoto for 4 years studying archaeology. He moved to Vancouver upon returning to Canada and attended Law School at UBC. After working for a Japanese plastics company for a number of years and practicing law in Vancouver, he is currently working Coast Mental Health Foundation. Edward has also been the president of the Vancouver Mokuyokai Society, is on the board of the Tomoe Arts Society and volunteers frequently with other community organizations.
Carly Yoshida is the breaking news producer for CTV Vancouver and has been working in the broadcast industry for more than four years. She has Japanese-Canadian heritage, and her family originally hailed from B.C. before settling in Toronto after the Second World War. Although she grew up in Toronto, she has many fond memories of visiting family on the west coast and volunteering at the Powell Street Festival. Carly recently moved to Vancouver with her husband. She is looking forward to her first year as a board member and is excited to be part of an organization that celebrates Japanese-Canadian culture in Vancouver.
Hiromi Grace Mikasa is an Academic Director at a private English school. She grew up going to the Powell Street Festival and has seen it grow over the years. She wants to be part of the board to make the festival a summer custom for everybody and share all of the wonderful art, good food and the great vibe. She also hopes to bring some of her Human Resource knowledge that she is currently gaining to the board.
Miko Hoffman has been working in non-profit management for more than 15 years. She was the Executive Director for the Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre for five years, after spending eight years as General Manager for the Powell Street Festival Society. She has also participated in the local non-profit arts community in curatorial, programming and volunteering capacities, and writes and performs in various musical projects.
Originally from California, Naomi Ostwald Kawamura is a Nisei educator and arts administrator who has held senior leadership positions with numerous arts & cultural organizations in the United States. Naomi currently works as a Development Officer with the Nikkei Place Foundation and is a Phd student at the University of British Columbia. Beyond Powell Street Festival Society, she is also a Board Member with the Museum Education Roundtable, which publishes the Journal of Museum Education. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Washington and her Master’s degree in Arts-in-Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Mike Okada works in the marketing industry, where he specializes in copywriting and brand consulting, and he is excited to be bringing his skills to continue building upon the successes of festivals past. Born and raised in BC, Mike is a fourth generation Japanese Canadian who has been coming to the Powell Street Festival since he was young. As a member of the board, he looks forward to working with an amazing team, getting back in touch with his roots, and helping the next generation make their own lasting memories of the festival in the years to come.
Colin Chan is a Professional Engineer, working at a local environmental consultancy. He holds a B.A.Sc. from UBC and an M.Eng. from the University of Melbourne, in Australia. Colin has both Chinese and Japanese-Canadian heritage, and grew up spending much of his time with his grandparents, aunts, and uncles in the Strathcona area. The Powell Street Festival was an eagerly anticipated event for him and his family each year. Colin is honoured to be able to contribute to the continued success of the Festival, to work alongside talented Board members, and to reconnect to the neighbourhood of his youth.