• Taiwanese American Professionals Celebrate at Annual Banquet

    by Winston Chua

    The Taiwanese American Professionals Los Angeles (TAP-LA) celebrated a year of good work Saturday night at their 9th annual TAP Banquet and Casino Night at the Double Tree in Downtown Los Angeles.

    The banquet was themed “A Night in Hualien,” invoking thoughts of the beautiful East coast Taiwan city.

    “TAP is open to all people, not just people of Taiwanese descent,” said TAP Internal Vice President Yingka Chou. “On any given month we host professional, social, cultural and community service events.”

    “I’ve always been a fan of the work TAP does and how they support young professionals to become community-oriented leaders,” said San Marino dentist Linus Chong.

    TAP brings together Taiwanese American professionals who have a hunger for leadership, networking, citizenship and a desire to build an understanding of Taiwanese-American heritage. There are more than 200 members in the L.A. chapter, the largest in the nation. TAP is a sub-group of a larger parent organization known as the Taiwanese American Citizens League (TACL).

    “TAP and TACL play a significant role because these nonprofits cultivate a sense of cultural appreciation for Taiwanese heritage,” said Emily Wu Truong. “I believe that developing this appreciation for one’s own family allows the younger generation to discover their own self-identity.”

    TAP Outgoing President Julie Chao said, “Ten years ago, a distinguished group of Los Angeles professionals decided they wanted to leave a legacy of support, network and advocacy to young people by providing leadership and direction.” And with the efforts of founders like Ben Ling, Teddy Liaw and Ed Chen, TAP-LA was born.

    At Casino Night, members Jasmine Hsieh, Sara Ho, George Shaw and Priscilla Liang entertained the crowd with instrumental music and vocal performances.

    The group honored Samuel Wang, an engineer-turned-fashionista, who founded Akfuncture, a clothing brand dedicated to fusing urban style together with Chinese culture.

    TAP events, which include TAPpy hour mixers for professionals, take place each month, with as many as four meetings on any given month.

    Guests, friends and members of TAP had the opportunity later in the evening to win silent auction items and casino raffle items, including a Kobe Bryant autographed jersey. New York, San Francisco, Philadelphia, D.C, Chicago and Boston are among the other cities which have TAP chapters.

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