A trajectory of successes that has spanned decades.

A trajectory of successes that has spanned decades.

Three Generations of the Kagawa Legacy

Lawrence Takeo

L.T. Kagawa abolished racially discriminatory underwriting practices.

Siegfred

Sig Kagawa was a strong leader with a lasting message. Sig committed his life to philanthropy and flourishing the family’s business.

Stephen

Stephen Kagawa is passionate about helping advisors guide their clients anywhere in the world their lives may lead.

A Brief Timeline

We’ve been here since 1930 to serve you.
Early 1930s

Although Hawaii's Asian American community was a vital part of its economy, they faced wide-spread discrimination, even when purchasing life insurance. Companies either refused to write policies on them or demanded exorbitant premiums, believing that Asians had shorter life spans than Caucasians.

Lawrence "L.T." Kagawa - a young insurance executive - was convinced this wasn't true. He compiled detailed health data that proved it. But the insurance companies wouldn't listen to him.

A portrait of an Asian male, Lawrence Takeo Kagawa in a suit wearing glasses.
1932

L.T. travels to San Francisco. Although he does not have an appointment, he waits in the lobby until he's able to meet with A.P. Giannini, founder of Bank of America and Transamerica, the holding company for Occidental Life Insurance Company of California (which was renamed Transamerica Occidental Life Insurance Company).

He presents his findings and convinces A.P. Giannini who orders Transamerica to change its underwriting practices with regard to issuing life insurance to Asians.

A portrait of a mustached Italian man, A.P. Giannini, in a suit.
1933

L.T. opens what was to become Occidental Underwriters of Hawaii. The agency goes on to become one of Transamerica's top producers.

Lawrence Takeo Kagawa stands alongside his staff of 9 other men and women outside the Occidental Office in Honolulu, Hawaii.
1942-1945

Because of the public's fear and uncertainty following the start of WWII, L.T., his family, and 120,000 other Japanese-Americans are required to move into government internment camps. Many lose everything they own.

The Kagawa family returns to Hawaii to restart their business. Fortunately, Transamerica has helped protect the agency assets and licenses in recognition of L.T.'s contributions to the company and the insurance industry.

L.T. Kagawa, his wife and family, including 5 children, pose for a photo.
1948

L.T. convinces Giannini and Transamerica to support him in extending FHA-guaranteed home loans to lower and middle-income Asian Americans in Hawaii... creating new, lasting wealth for thousands of people shut out from owning their own homes.

Early 1950s

L.T.'s younger brother, Yoshinobu, becomes the first American employee of Sony. He provides founder Akio Morita with cross-border legal and business advice and assistance in opening the American and eventually European markets to Sony products to overwhelming success.

L.T. Kagawa’s younger brother, Yoshinobu Kagawa, posing for a photo with Akio Morita and three other individuals.
1955

L.T. and Yoshinobu enter the Japanese insurance market to serve overseas Americans and the expatriate community, securing a license from the Japanese Ministry of Finance to represent and sell Transamerica's policies to Americans and other foreign nationals in Japan.

1971

L.T.'s son, Siegfred "Sig" Kagawa, becomes President of Occidental Underwriters of Hawaii and dedicates himself to serving humanitarian causes while continuing to grow the flourishing business his father started.

A portrait of an Asian male, Siegfred Kagawa, in a suit.
1972

Japan's Emperor Hirohito awards L.T. the distinguished Third Order of the Rising Sun in recognition of his pioneering services to Japanese in America. His younger brother Yoshinobu is later awarded the Second Order of the Rising Sun for helping corporations reach out beyond Japan.

The Japan Emperor of Japan, Emperor Hirohito, awards a man, L.T. Kagawa, a medal.
1988

Sig Kagawa is instrumental in securing funding for the Japanese American National Museum in Los Angeles. It is designed to be a dynamic center for national - and global - learning that celebrates the contributions of Japanese Americans in overcoming hardship and opposition to become valued members of American society.

Sig goes on to become the first Asian American chairman of the Bishop Musuem in Hawaii and the first Asian American to serve on the National Board of the Boy Scouts of America. In 1997, he is awarded the Silver Buffalo Award, the Scout's highest and most prestigious volunteer award.

View of the front of the Japanese American National Museum in Little Tokyo, Los Angeles, California.
1992

Stephen Kagawa - L.T.'s grandson and Sig's son - opens the first Pacific Bridge Office in Pasadena, California.

Three men, Leroy Kawai, Stephen Kagawa, wearing ti leaves, and Siegfred Kagawa stand together for a photo.
2002

Stephen Kagawa continues the family tradition of community service. Both the State of California and the City of Los Angeles honor The Pacific Bridge Companies for exceptional service to the community and outstanding corporate citizenship.

A collage of various award certificates and plaques.
2005

The Pacific Bridge Companies expands to meet its growing network of worldwide clients, alliances, and financial services by opening new subsidiaries and offices in Hawaii, Tokyo, and Hong Kong.

Siegfred Kagawa, his wife, Betsy Kagawa, Hawaii Senator Daniel Inouye, and Stephen Kagawa with floral leis, pose for a photo in the lobby at the grand opening of the Hawaii Office.
2011

In response to the Lehman Crisis in 2008, Pacific Bridge partners with world class investment managers for underwriting and analysis of investment portfolios.

2013

Business and client advisory in Asia evolves, encouraging new services. Pacific Bridge Real Estate is launched, giving clients and partners access to new opportunities to collaborate with real estate advisors. 

The Pacific Bridge Real Estate logo: a brushstroke bridge and text reading “Pacific Bridge Real Estate” under the bridge.
2014

The Pacific Bridge Companies sets its focus on the United States and 1st generation communities migrating from Asia, helping with their transition to their new American homes.

New opportunities arise as tax law changes encourage new services for multi-national corporations. Lako e Pono is born.

2017

The Pacific Bridge Companies celebrates its 25th Anniversary.

The Pacific Bridge Companies group staff photo with everyone gesturing “shaka” or “hang loose” outside Roy’s Restaurant in Pasadena, California.
2017

Stephen Kagawa is invited to speak at the first multi-national panel for MDRT in Japan sponsored by MDRT Headquarters.​

Stephen Kagawa in a group photo with 12 other MDRT members in Japan.
2020

Stephen Kagawa serves on MDRT’s Top of the Table Advisory Board as its Chair of the Top of the Table Annual Meeting 

Stephen Kagawa and four other MDRT members stand in front of a sign on the wall reading, “MDRT The Premiere Association of Financial Professionals”.
2020

Stephen is honored by the National Association for Insurance and Financial Advisors as its Diversity Champion.

A poster board with a photo of Stephen a Kagawa in a tuxedo. The poster reads, “Cheers! You Rock, Stephen! Congratulations on being the 2020 NAIFA Diversity Champion!”
2021

Stephen Kagawa publishes his first book, Aloha Financial Advising: Doing Good to do Better for Your Clients and Yourself, an Amazon Best-Seller.

TPBC launches its Aloha Financial Advisors platform.

Stephen becomes the first person of Asian ancestry to chair MDRT’s Top of the Table Advisory Board Chair and serves as a Global Council Member. 

A book, with the cover featuring a pink pig in sunglasses surrounded by a floral and leaf wreath with the title, Aloha Financial Advising: Doing Good to Do Better for Your Clients and Yourself. To the left of the book are the words, “Amazon #1 Bestseller” and “Available Now”.