The Georgia Straight’s Charlie Smith (pictured here with legendary Vancouver real-estate agent Faye Leung) is one of two individuals who will be honoured at the end of Asian Heritage Month. Asian Heritage Month officially starts on May 1, but its 2013 launch was held Tuesday (April 30) at Richmond City Hall. Numerous events will be held throughout the month and at the end of it all, the explorASIAN 2013 Recognition Gala will be held on June 1 at Pink Pearl Restaurant.
This year, two individuals will be recognized at the gala for their contributions in supporting Asian Canadian communities. One of them is retired publisher Scott McIntyre of D&M Publishing. His firm produced Saltwater City, the first coffee table book about Chinese people in Vancouver. Scott and editor Saeko Usukawa also were instrumental in producing Many-Mouthed Birds, a groundbreaking anthology of Chinese Canadian writing. Numerous Asian Canadian writers, such as David Suzuki, SKY Lee, Wayson Choy, Paul Yee, and more, garnered national attention and awards.
The other person that will be honoured is the Georgia Straight’s own editor, Charlie Smith. Smith worked at CBC Radio and TV and wrote for numerous publications before joining the Georgia Straight in 1994. After being appointed editor in 2005, Smith has worked tirelessly to educate both readers and staff about diversity within B.C.’s Asian Canadian communities. He credits the Georgia Straight’s owners, the McLeod family, and the editors and writers of the paper for supporting his vision of community-building. He also thanks the editorial staff of Asian descent—Carolyn Ali, Michelle da Silva, Stephen Hui, Carlito Pablo, and Craig Takeuchi—for enhancing his sensitivity to the daily issues that impact the diverse citizens in our communities.