February 1, 2011 > Robert Sakai, Business Person of the Year
Robert Sakai, Business Person of the Year
Submitted by Hayward Chamber of Commerce
Photo by Simon Wong
Bob Sakai is a long-term local attorney, volunteer and community activist who has been called a "Hayward original."
He grew up in Hayward, graduated from Tennyson High School, UC Berkley and Hastings College of Law before practicing with the Hayward firm of Haley, Purchio, Sakai & Smith for 33 years. He has had his own practice since 2008, specializing in probate, wills, trusts, zoning and use permit applications. He also serves as a California Probate Referee, a position to which he was appointed by the California State Controller in 1993.
Sakai's contributions as a community volunteer include past service on the boards of the Boy Scouts of America Tres Ranchos District, Japanese American Services of the East Bay, Eden Township Japanese Community Center, Hayward Education Foundation, One Hundred Club of Alameda County, the United Way and the California State University East Bay Foundation, Inc.
His work with local non-profits included handling the incorporation of Chime-In, which supports music programs in Hayward schools, the PC Clubhouse and the Hayward-Funabashi Sister City Committee.
As a 27-year member of the Hayward Rotary Club, Sakai has served as president and received the 2008 Outstanding Rotarian Award. He has headed numerous club philanthropic activates, including the club's foundation from 2000 to 2006 when it its assets reached $1M in assets. Sakai presided at the club's meeting on December 13, 2010, when the foundation distributed $30,000 in checks to 18 community service organizations.
"Bob has worked both in his business and as a volunteer to improve the Hayward community," said Councilman Bill Quirk. "He is truly a Hayward original."
Sakai received his award, sponsored by Kaiser Permanente, at the Hayward Chamber of Commerce's 67th Annual Celebration Awards Gala at Cal State University, East Bay on January 22, 2011.