NEWS: Career histories of two more LAICCC
alumni can now be viewed on the Performing
Arts Legacy Project website - More Info

EVENTS: Hattie Winston, Emily Yancy star in
"Having Our Say" play reading Sat., April 13 at
The Kirk Douglas Theatre -​ More Info


Recipient: Inner City Essence Award (ICE)

Those who say there are no second acts in American life don’t know George Takei. For the young boy who spent his childhood in an American concentration camp for persons of Japanese ancestry, life has offered not just a second act, but a third, fourth and fifth — with many, one hopes, still to come. His unique journey through pop culture and politics has made him not just a witness, but a prime mover during some of the most critical moments in our history. As a result, through the lens of his life, we are able to experience the incredible changes of 20th and 21st century America, eight decades during which our nation rose to global power; went to the moon and beyond; embraced civil rights for people of all cultures; adopted new definitions of love, marriage and the family; allowed diversity to blossom and inclusion to become the norm, and unleashed disruptive technologies that connect us all, and democratize our ability to connect, communicate and create.

George Takei is best known for his portrayal of Mr. Sulu in the acclaimed television and film series Star Trek.

Among current projects, Takei is set to play the role of Reciter in the revival of Stephen Sondheim’s and John Weidman’s Pacific Overtures directed by John Doyle and opening at the off-Broadway Classic Stage Company in April 2017.

He’s an actor, social justice activist, social media mega-power, star of the Broadway musical Allegiance, and subject of To Be Takei, a documentary on his life and career.

Takei’s acting career has spanned nearly six decades, with more than 40 feature films and hundreds of television guest-starring roles to his credit. Takei is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, Actors’ Equity Association, and Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists.

With the outbreak of World War II, Los Angeles, California-born Takei and his family were placed behind the barbed-wire enclosures of United States internment camps along with 120,000 other Japanese Americans. Takei spent most of his childhood at Camp Rohwer in the swamps of Arkansas and at wind-swept Camp Tule Lake in northern California. At the end of the war, Takei’s family returned to their native Los Angeles.

Inspired by this difficult chapter of American history, Takei developed the musical Allegiance, an epic story of love, family and heroism in which he starred alongside Tony Award winner Lea Salonga. Allegiance’s world premiere at the Old Globe Theatre in San Diego in 2012 was followed by a Broadway engagement at the Longacre Theatre in New York City. Takei made his Broadway debut in Allegiance, which ran for 150 performances in late 2015 and early 2016.

Now a community activist, Takei serves as chair of the council of governors of East West Players, the nation’s foremost Asian Pacific American theater.

He is also a member of the Human Rights Campaign, the largest national lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender political organization. Takei is Chairman Emeritus of the Japanese American National Museum’s Board of Trustees; a member of the US-Japan Bridging Foundation’s Board of Directors; and served on the Board of the Japan-United States Friendship Commission under President Clinton. In recognition of his contribution to the Japan-United States relationship, Takei was conferred with the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette by His Majesty the Emperor of Japan in 2004.

Takei served for 11 years on the Board of Directors of the Southern California Rapid Transit District as Los Angeles Mayor Tom Bradley’s appointee and he was vice president of human resources of the American Public Transit Association. Mayor Bradley’s mission to Takei was to get started building the first subway network in Los Angeles which is now not only operating but is being extended west along Wilshire Boulevard past Westwood.
To Be Takei, a Jennifer M. Kroot documentary on the life and career of Takei, premiered at Sundance Film Festival in January 2014 and was later released in select theaters across North America.

 Takei shared a Grammy nomination with Leonard Nimoy in 1987 in the Best Spoken Word or Non-Musical Recording category. Takei also received a star on Hollywood Boulevard’s Walk of Fame in 1986. And in 1991 he left his signature and hand print, in cement, in front of Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.

His first book, his autobiography, To the Stars, was published in 1994, and in 2012 and 2013 he published his second and third books, Oh Myyy! There Goes The Internet, and its sequel, Lions And Tigers And Bears: The Internet Strikes Back – both about his forays on social media and the internet, making the Amazon e-book and paperback best-seller lists in 2012 and 2013. named Takei the most-influential person on Facebook, where currently he has 9.8 million likes. He has 1.8 million followers on Twitter.