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Keiko Ikari Miya


Keiko Ikari Miya’s upbringing both in Kesennuma, Japan and in the US (New York City and Southern California) has made her keenly aware of the differences in societies. She was able to enjoy being a classroom teacher at an elementary school in Maywood, CA for 11 years, then at Roosevelt High School, Boyle Heights as a teacher of Japanese for 17 years. The 23 years in NYC and 35 plus years in SoCal have afforded Keiko experiences working with people of many races and ethnicities, and she finds joy in working with people emphatically. Keiko has been enjoying volunteering at the Japanese American National Museum (JANM) since 2017, especially helping the offspring of Issei and Nisei families research their ancestors’ roots, mainly in the U.S. The Hirasaki National Resource Center of the Museum offers this opportunity for research.

Updated August 2021


Stories from This Author

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Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column
Tribute to Amy Uyemastu: After — Part 5

Oct. 19, 2023 • Kathy Nishimoto Masaoka , Nina Chan , Keiko Ikari Miya , Janice Iwanaga Yen , Lynn Taise , traci kato-kiriyama

As we continue to pay homage to the great Amy Uyematsu, we wanted to feature a special collective poem that was just presented last weekend at the Japanese American National Museum at Amy’s Celebration of Life by five friends of Amy - her best friend Lynn Taise and four writers from Amy’s class in Little Tokyo — the Women Word Warriors (Nina Chan, Kathy Masaoka, Keiko Miya, Janice Yen). We provided prompts and questions for the group to consider, including a …

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Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column
Tribute to Amy Uyematsu: After — Part 1

July 20, 2023 • Keiko Ikari Miya , Kathy Nishimoto Masaoka , traci kato-kiriyama

When first asked to curate the Nikkei Uncovered poetry column in 2016, the very first person I wanted to feature was the great Amy Uyematsu. Alongside the countless many, I am yet another poet/writer who holds so much sorrow with the loss of Amy after her long and fierce battle with cancer. She survived through many years, showing up year after year with her poetry and gracing the "classroom" even in retirement, to lead a special group of writers in …

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Nikkei Uncovered: a poetry column
Owed to Amy

Aug. 19, 2021 • Nina Chan , Miya Iwataki , Kathy Nishimoto Masaoka , Keiko Ikari Miya , traci kato-kiriyama

To borrow from the title of one of this month’s features, the theme for this month is all about paying homage to one of our most beloved writers, Amy Uyematsu. Amy has been writing and teaching for decades and is going through the fight of her life right now—and what is a community-based poetry column if not a platform to support the best energies and wishes possible for the better health of one of our own poets? You will see …

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