From Oppression to Empowerment, My American Journey from Concentration Camp to Corporate Management–Ron Osajima

I am now 85 years old and am reaching the end of life. As I look back on my life, as shown in part in the chapters of this story, I conclude that I have been blessed with knowing and loving many people but most of all, BJ Watanabe, my wife of 40 years, and my children from both my marriages. And I have been fortunate to live in a country that, despite its many flaws, enables people from all over the world to pursue a better life and, if they so desire, to be friends with people of all colors.  I have also been blessed with enough brainpower to qualify for work that enables my family and me to live comfortable lives.

Ron Osajima standing in front of Wall of Names at Camp Manzanar, California

Ever wonder what it was like to be alive in 1935? Or to be imprisoned by your own government for three years just for being Japanese American? How about being the
only person of color in your UCLA classes? Or being the first Asian American promoted to a high-level management position of a prestigious technology company?

All of these experiences and more make up the life of Ron Osajima, husband, father, grandfather, affirmative action advocate, former chief information officer, concentration camp internee and community activist. His experiences of oppression, assimilation and empowerment tell a compelling and uniquely Japanese-American story.

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