Asian American Leadership Delegation


Funded by


The 2018 Delegates with U.S. Ambassador William Hagerty (center) in Tokyo


The Asian American Leadership Delegation (AALD) program provides the opportunity for a select group of Asian American leaders from across the U.S. to travel to Japan to engage with Japanese leaders in the business, government, academic, and nonprofit sectors. USJC works with these state legislators to broaden the understanding of the U.S.-Japan relationship in United States legislative bodies and to foster connections among diverse Asian American leaders and Japanese government, business and civil society leaders. After taking part in the Asian American Leadership Delegation (AALD) program, participants will have opportunities to continue pursuing an active role in U.S.-Japan relations by connecting with USJC’s extensive international, national and regional networks. The program is funded by The Sasakawa Peace Foundation and supported by The National Asian Pacific American Caucus of State Legislators. 

The AALD Program began in 2014, and 29 delegates have participated to date.


2019 Program

In the sixth year of this signature program, the Asian American Leadership Delegation will consist of a one-week trip for a delegation of six state legislators plus two trip leaders to visit Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo to meet with Japanese national and local political and governmental officials, business executives and community leaders to exchange ideas as well as create networks that can mutually benefit each other in the short- to long-term. The program provides business class airfare travel from the United States to Japan and back and hotel accommodations, meals, and ground transportation expenses within Japan.


Goals of the Delegation Program

  1. Improve understanding and strengthen long term relations between Asian Americans and Japan.
  2. Develop and implement ongoing strategies to expand the role of Asian Americans in advancing U.S.-Japan relations.
  3. Develop a network of Asian American leaders that will continue to work together to advance long term U.S.-Japan relations at the state and regional levels.


2019 Schedule

  • The trip to Japan will be December 6 – December 14, 2019.
  • Orientation –This is a mandatory conference call that will take place in November for all delegates that will travel to Japan.
  • The itinerary will include travel to Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka (subject to change).
  • Transportation, hotels and meals will be provided.
  • Delegates are required to attend all meetings and events during the trip.
  • Spouses & guests are not permitted to attend the trip but may join delegates after the trip, at their own expense.


Criteria & Selection of the 2019 Delegation

The U.S.-Japan Council will approve the final six Asian American leaders for the 2019 delegation. Selection for the 2019 delegation will give consideration to individuals who are serving as elected officials at the state level. Members of the delegation will speak at a symposium in Tokyo sponsored by the U.S.-Japan Council and funded by the Sasakawa Peace Foundation.

In making the final recommendations for the delegation, criteria will also include:

  • Regional representation
  • Diversity of legislative committee assignments and professional backgrounds
  • Gender balance


Submission of Applications / Nominations

Applications have closed. Thank you to everyone who submitted an application. 



Irene Kawanabe, Director, National Asian Pacific American Caucus of State Legislators at

Tamaki Laycock, Program Coordinator, U.S.-Japan Council at



2018 Asian American Leadership Delegation Program

2017 Asian American Leadership Delegation Program

2016 Asian American Leadership Delegation Program 

2015 Asian American Leadership Delegation Program

2014 Asian American Leadership Delegation Program