On March 11, 2011, an earthquake struck off the coast of Japan, churning up a devastating tsunami that swept over cities and farmland in the northern part of the country and set off warnings as far away the west coast of the United States and South America. Recorded as 9.0 on the Richter scale, it was the most powerful quake ever to hit the country. As the nation struggled with a rescue effort, it also faced the worst nuclear emergency since Chernobyl.
As of March 31, the official death toll had been raised to more than 11,600, and more than 16,000 people were listed as missing, although there may be some overlap between the two groups. The final toll is expected to reach nearly 20,000. More than 190,000 people remained housed in temporary shelters; tens of thousands of others evacuated their homes due to the nuclear crisis.
Sachiko Yamasaki (born and raised in Japan) is a recent graduate from CSUN. Team TAG recognized Sachiko’s leadership potential, and she was hired in February to work in our Los Angeles office.
During this crisis in Japan, Sachiko stepped up and rallied the troops of Team TAG.
Sachiko Yamasaki: “Being from Japan, the recent environmental disaster had a huge impact on me. The opportunity to give back to my country following the disaster was not only important to me, but personal. I experienced the 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake, which happened in my hometown. During that time resources were scarce; we lived with limited food, water and gas. My people and I were able to survive through the help of volunteers and many generous donations. Now, it’s my opportunity to give something back to my country and help as many people as possible survive through the disaster.”
Sachiko continued: “This event not only allowed me to help my country, but gave me the opportunity to hone my leadership skills. More specifically, I learned how to influence and encourage people to do something. If I did not commit to the event full force and did not truly believe that raising money for Japan would help, then why would anyone else follow me? Without committed followers it would not have been a successful event. Believing in what you do, with a goal and purpose in mind is definitely the key to success.
My friends at Team TAG helped me organize a fundraiser (Texas Hold ‘Em Tournament) that raised over $500. The contributions were paid the Red Cross in Japan.
I want to personally thank a few people for their help: Heather Corbin, Frank Brito, Helen Davidov, Calvin Barbosa, Frida Karlsson, Rosario Valenzuela, Mirza Ulasoglu, Andy Kang, Eric Denq, Michael White, Jinu Park, Manilynn Disuanco, Gus Wang, Hovhannes Avagyen, Adrian Flores, Sam Chen, Andrew Barkman, and Jaime Hepp. My countrymen appreciate your concern and your help.”