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LITTLE TOKYO : Hirano Appointed to Presidential Panel

October 09, 1994|TOMMY LI

Irene Hirano, 47, the president and executive director of the Japanese American National Museum, has been appointed to a presidential committee that studies and promotes public arts and humanities programs.

The Committee on the Arts and Humanities comprises a diverse group of artists, scholars, writers, business leaders and community activists--including music producer Quincy Jones and "M. Butterfly" playwright David Henry Hwang.

"The President wanted to assure that there was good ethnic diversity on the committee, and so hopefully I can bring my experience as a Japanese American and as an Asian American to the deliberations that the committee will undertake," Hirano said.

During the group's first meeting Sept. 21, Clinton asked that members report in a year on the status of America's cultural life, whether programs nationwide have made any strides in bridging cultural and ethnic differences.

The committee, created by executive order in 1982, will also be responsible for seeking new ways to increase private and public funding of the arts and humanities.

Hirano, of West Los Angeles, has served as president and executive director of the nonprofit Japanese American National Museum since 1988.

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