SF JACL Japantown History Mural Project

Japantown Journey: The Birth of A Community

The Mural will honor and celebrate the 115 years of a community’s survival and resilience.

Vector image for the Scholarship section

Project Summary

The San Francisco Chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League, working with the artistic team of MissionArt415 will create a mural on the high-traffic exterior wall facing Geary Boulevard at the entrance to the Peace Plaza. 

The historical mural is funded by three generous Trust Funds: Yo Hironaka, Greg Marutani and Frank Minami, who were members of JACL and integral to the preservation of San Francisco Japantown. It is in their names, that SFJACL launched the project. 

The mural will depict the history of SF’s Japantown and artfully create images of persons, places and events that will tell the story of one of the three remaining Japantowns in the U.S. The purpose is to educate and enlighten visitors to the value of diverse communities to our City, and to instill pride and gratitude for the community’s future generations.

To contact us for more information

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The Team

It takes a collective heart to build something great

SF JACL Board of Directors:

Judy Hamaguchi

David Takashima

Emily Murase

John Hayashi

Merry Nishimura

Elena Nielsen

Joyce Nakamura


Artists Team

Lisa Brewer, CEO MissionArt415, Project Manager

Randolph Bowes, Founder, MissionArt415, Graphic Designer/Engineer

Rigel “Crayone” Juratovac, Master Artist

Wes “Marks” Wong, Artist, Interactive design



Kenji Taguma, Nichi Bei Foundation

Rosalyn Tonai, National Japanese American Historical Society

Video Documentarian

Greg Viloria, Monks Media Works


Upcoming Mural Related Meetings and Events


Look here for upcoming meetings

  • SF JACL Historic Japantown Mural Project Public Meeting III
    Dec 15, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
    San Francisco, 1684 Post St, San Francisco, CA 94115, USA
    Mural Updates, Phase 2 of artists sketch draft, public discussion, and next steps.
  • SF JACL Historic Japantown Mural Project Public Meeting IV
    Jan 12, 2023, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
    San Francisco, 1765 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94115, USA
    Mural Updates, presentation of notables list, Phase 3 of artist’s sketch draft, public discussion, next steps.
  • SF JACL Historic Japantown Mural Project Public Meeting V
    Jan 30, 2023, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
    San Francisco, 1840 Sutter St, San Francisco, CA 94115, USA
    Final mural updates, Final phase of artist’s sketch design, public discussion about notables list, comments.

Nominations for the Mural images

The Mural will honor persons who made a lasting difference in the survival and vitality of our community.  They are persons whose determination to build Japantown in the face of exclusion and racism helped to preserve our history and culture, and whose activism, trailblazing and vision continue to guide us today. 


Nominations must be received by 11:59 PM, December 31, 2022. 

The list will then be presented to a special advisory committee composed of community members and historians for review.  Two community meetings will be open to the public to review the final nominations and make comments.


Your nominations can be submitted by pressing the button below and filling out the form.

Some considerations:

Selection Criteria

1. Established and built Japantown and who have made significant contributions to continue to build and preserve it

2. Advanced our diverse stories and history through education, the arts and culture

3. Played a leadership role in social justice and civil rights issues

A subset of about 8-10 from this list will be featured as portraits on the Mural but the final list will remain on the website indefinitely as a testament to those who inspired community building and advocacy. 

IMPORTANT: Please include a bio, not to exceed 50 words, and submit.