By Henry Fuhrmann
Actor Randall Park, the star of ABC’s hit comedy series “Fresh Off the Boat,” has been named the recipient of the 2015 Visibility Award, to be presented at the annual V3 Digital Media Conference by the Los Angeles Chapter of the Asian American Journalists Association.
Park will appear at both days of V3con, to be held June 26-27 in Los Angeles. The program, in its fourth year, recognizes the “Vision. Visibility. Voice” of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in digital and social media. As in past years, the goal is to showcase the most influential and interesting Asian Americans online while connecting diverse communities and enabling participants to build new media skills.
“Randall Park has brought a new level of visibility to the AAPI community with his work in television and the movies, especially in the last year,” said Jocelyn “Joz” Wang, the founder of V3con and a longtime officer of AAJA-Los Angeles. “With his star turns in ‘Fresh Off the Boat’ and ‘The Interview,’ he has helped redefine the place of Asian Americans on our screens.”
Park just finished his first season playing the patriarch of a Taiwanese American family in “Fresh Off the Boat,” the breakout hit based on the memoir of restaurateur Eddie Huang. The show, the first network series to focus on an Asian American family in 20 years, was recently picked up for a second season.
In “The Interview,” one of the most-talked-about films of 2014, Park played North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. And Park continues in a recurring role on HBO’s “Veep,” playing Danny Chung, governor of Minnesota.
On television, Park can next be seen in the Netflix original series “Wet Hot American Summer: First Day of Camp,” based on the cult classic 2001 film of the same name. The series will be released in full on July 17.
“It is such an honor to be recognized by the kind people of the Asian American Journalists Association for helping to bring more visibility to the AAPI community,” Park said. “I humbly accept the award, along with the $500,000 prize money that has yet to be confirmed, but it’s something I’d like to discuss with AAJA when you have a moment. Thanks.”
The two-day V3con drew several hundred attendees in each of its first three years. This year’s edition will consist of the Opening Awards Reception on Friday, June 26, to be followed by the all-day Digital Media Conference on Saturday, June 27, both at the Japanese American National Museum in Little Tokyo in downtown Los Angeles.
Park will accept his award on June 26 and return on June 27 for a one-on-one “Conversation With” session to close out the conference.
The Visibility Award is one of three “V” awards given annually at V3con to recognize the contributions, talents and values of path-breaking individuals who have enabled Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders to become recognized as a significant force in media and the broader community.
In winning the 2015 Visibility Award, Park joins a list of media personalities and artists who are helping Asian Americans become accepted as part of the mainstream popular culture. Past winners were David Choi and Lisa Ling (2012), Grace Lee Boggs (2013) and Jonathan Gold (2014).
AAJA-Los Angeles will soon announce the winners of its Vision and Voice awards.
The Vision Award is given for a career spent covering or promoting Asian America. The previous winners were Jeff Yang (2012), Roy Choi and Richard Lui (2013) and Ann Curry (2014).
The Voice Award honors a recipient who gives voice to Asian Americans and helps others find their voices. The previous winners were Jocelyn “Joz” Wang (2012), Gil Asakawa (2013) and Judith Hill (2014).
Registration for V3con is open now. Current AAJA members qualify for a discounted early-bird registration rate of $22, which has been extended through June 7. For nonmembers, the student rate is $25 and the general rate is $30, also good through June 7, after which the general rate will be $50. Registrants may sign up at www.v3con.com/registration.
Opening Awards Reception
Friday, June 26, 6 to 9 p.m.
V3 Digital Media Conference
Saturday, June 27, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Japanese American National Museum
100 N. Central Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012
V3con is the only digital media conference centered on AAPI mainstream journalists, digital media journalists, bloggers and those interested in social media. The conference is an opportunity for those communicating on multiple digital platforms, including social media and blogs, and their audiences to interact, engage in person and inspire those who are interested in communicating online.
The mission of the Asian American Journalists Association is to provide a means of association and support among Asian American and Pacific Islander journalists; provide encouragement, information, advice and scholarship assistance to AAPI students who aspire to professional journalism careers; provide to the AAPI community an awareness of new media and an understanding of how to gain fair access; and research and point out when news media organizations stray from accuracy and fairness in coverage of AAPIs. The Los Angeles Chapter, established in 1981, is the organization’s founding chapter. www.aaja-la.org.