Dennis Yen


By Justin Japitana

Read more interviews with generous donors to the California Masonic Foundation here.

California Freemason: You’re a member of the magicians’ affinity lodge, Ye Olde Cup & Ball No. 880. How did you get interested in magic?
Dennis Yen: As a child, I got my first exposure to magic seeing Marshall Brodien doing card tricks in a TV commercial. So I went to the library and got all the magic books I could find and started practicing. It was difficult at first, being a child with ADHD, but it taught me how to focus, and that spilled over into other aspects of my life. I like performing coin magic the best. You can do it at any time, and it always brings a smile to someone’s face.

CFM: And how did you get involved in Masonry?
DY: When I was 13, my grandfather gave me a keychain with the square and compass on it, and I thought it was one of the coolest things I ever saw. Years later, at my Rotary Club, I noticed the same logo on one of my fellow Rotarians, and I brought it up with him. He introduced me to Pasadena № 272 and eventually I submitted an application. My mother was so excited about it that she told my uncle James, who told me that he was also a Mason, as was my grandfather, who had been the grand master of China. It wasn’t until I was initiated that I found out about any of that.

CFM: What about Masonry resonates with you the most?
DY: Every time I recite a passage of the ritual, it opens a new level of understanding of myself. Self-discovery requires a little guidance. Self-practice in this craft is extremely important, because the better you understand yourself and the paths you take, the more effective you can be as a guide and leader of others. So the ritual is definitely one of my favorite things, and of course I have more friends than I can count.

CFM: How does your work on the Public Education Advisory Committee fit into that
DY: I was over the moon when I was asked to serve on the PEAC. That role helps me leverage the support of the California Masonic Foundation to spearhead local programs and ensure that schools in our area have Masonic support. Raising A Reader, for example, is an awesome program to develop kids through the power of reading. Finding innovative and exciting ways to educate kids outside the current academic climate is a major positive in my book.

To donate to the California Masonic Foundation, please visit

Mathew Scott

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