Over 400 guests of the 5th Annual Laotian American Community of Fresno Dok Dao Huang, Marigold Flower, Gala Scholarship Fundraiser were treated to a night of culture, cuisine, and camaraderie at the stunning Toca Madera Winery. Upon arrival, guests were greeted by the rich aromas of Central Valley wines and the delicious flavors of Laotian cuisine from Khin Khin Food.
As guests savored the delectable dinner catered by B&K Asian Kitchen, the spirit of generosity filled the air. We paused to recognize our esteemed sponsors, whose unwavering commitment to our cause has been instrumental in shaping the success of our students and community.
The excitement escalated with the silent auction, where guests eagerly bid on a treasure trove of items, from exquisite artwork and enticing gift baskets to the grand prize of a brand-new flat-screen TV.
Guests were treated to a beautiful assortment of Lao desserts provided by Noelle’s Creative Cuisine. From the classic nam vahn (coconut tapioca pudding) to the layered coconut pandan flavors, guests were delighted to immerse themselves in these iconic Lao delicacies.
The evening took a cultural turn as guests were invited to join the traditional Lao Lumvong Dance, immersing themselves in the rhythmic grace and vibrant energy of Lao heritage.
As the night progressed, the dance floor ignited with lively beats provided by AirVieng Band and DJ Randy, keeping guests on their feet until the stroke of midnight.
We extend our heartfelt gratitude to every guest and volunteer who made this event a resounding success. Your presence, enthusiasm, and generosity have left an indelible mark on our hearts and fueled our mission to empower the next generation of Laotian leaders.
The gala has become a tradition in the Central Valley, bringing together Lao people and supporters from all over. Thank you for being a part of this unforgettable celebration!
Congratulations to the 2023 Scholarship Recipients! These outstanding students have demonstrated academic excellence, community leadership, and a commitment to making a difference in the world. We are so proud to have them represent our community, and we wish them all the success in their educational and professional endeavors.
⭐ Davanee Vongdara, UC Santa Cruz, Biochemistry
⭐ Angel Phakonekham, California State University, Fresno, Sports Administration
⭐ Brenda Manyvanh, California State University, Fresno, Speech Pathology
⭐ Deken Jones, Fresno City College, Business
⭐ Hailey Bounyavong, California State University, Fresno, Pre-Health
⭐ Tom Inthavong, Merced College, Global Arts Studies
⭐ Skyla Bun, UC Merced, Sociology
⭐ Breanna Somsack, California State University, Fresno, Journalism
⭐ Logan Phomsopha, Fresno City College, Dentistry
⭐ Jaylynn Kaysena, University of California, San Diego, Biology
⭐ Howard Lao, Medical
Our scholarship recipients are pursuing a wide range of academic majors, including STEM, healthcare, and the arts. They are also committed to giving back to their communities, volunteering their time to organizations that support education, social justice, and environmental protection.
We are grateful for the opportunity to support these bright and talented students. Your investment in their education is an investment in our future.
Community Recognition Awards 🙌🌟
With heartfelt gratitude, we celebrate our community’s outstanding leaders. Their accomplishments and dedication inspire us all.
Golden Heart: Salong Namsa, Laos Supply, SabaideeFest
Given to an individual for their tireless work and commitment to making a positive difference in the lives of Laotian-Americans.
Lao Business of the Year: Thai Phuket Restaurant, Paul Sayavong
Awarded to a Lao-owned business for its remarkable contributions to economic growth, community development, and charitable giving.
Emerging Leadership: Xayaphone M. Salinthone, Lao Student Association, Fresno State Student, Business Administration, Computer Information Systems
Given to a young, talented individual in the community who has made outstanding contributions to improving the community through their courage, leadership, and selfless dedication.
Laotian American Community Appreciation: Joi & Noelle Simmaly, Spicy Joi Banh Mi x Lao Street Food, Noelle’s Creative Cuisine
Given to exemplary individuals who have shown great dedication, care and contribution to the livelihood of the community.
Special Recognition: Christina Alejo, Program Director, The Fresno Center
This award is given to an individual who has demonstrated unmatched strength and dedication that has had a positive impact on our community.