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Culture Arts Academy board holds initial meeting

The first meeting of the American Samoa Culture Arts Academy board of governors convened Wednesday, presided over by Gov. Togiola Tulafono, who stated that the Academy is going to be a non-profit organization and a stand-alone statutory cooperation appointed by law.

In a news release from the governor’s office, it quotes Togiola saying that  the initial meeting was the continuance and start of an effort “critical for all 18 members of the board to work together and accomplish a vision that would not only benefit us today, but also our children in the future.”

He went on to saying that the Academy will be located at the old “Korean House” in Pago Pago, and that it should be ready for use by the end of this year. Moreover, he informed the board that he and his office will work diligently to obtain funding to start-up and maintain the academy.

Attending the meeting were the three of the nine voting members: Secretary of Samoan Affairs, District Governor of Manu’a and President of the American Samoa Community College. Also in attendance were five of the nine non-voting members: Governor, House Representative, Territorial Historic Preservation Officer, Territorial Archivist and the Superintendent of the National Park of American Samoa.

The Academy was established by law about 12 years ago with four main purposes: establish a Samoan Language Institute, which is an organized program where the Samoan language, and its origins, meanings, diction, grammar and usage of Samoan words are studied extensively, establish a “Samoan-English words transformation institute” which is an organized program to properly transform as many words as practical of the English language into words of the Samoan language, establish a “Samoan-English dictionary institute,” which is an organized program whereby a comprehensive Samoan-English dictionary text be written and compiled, and properly screen, review and give approval, support or non-support of proposals that claim expertise on Samoan culture.

The meeting concluded with governor appointing his office to assume all chairperson duties until board elects an official chairperson. The next meeting date will be announced by the governor, but it was agreed by the board members that it will be held at ASCC.

Source: ASG press release