This month, Member of the Legacy Council Allen Okamoto and Council Leader Gary Mukai each received the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Rays from the Government of Japan. Their decorations were part of the 2017 Autumn Conferment. Many USJC members in Northern California attended the ceremonies that San Francisco Consul General Jun Yamada held for each of the leaders.
Mr. Okamoto was recognized on February 14 for his contributions to the promotion of friendship and mutual understanding between Japan and the United States, including his work as co-chair of the San Francisco Osaka Sister City Association, co-chair of the Northern California Cherry Blossom Festival and President of the Japanese Cultural and Community Center of Northern California.
Consul General Yamada with Mr. Okamoto
Dr. Mukai was recognized on February 8 for his contributions to promoting mutual understanding and strengthening U.S.-Japan relations through education, especially as Director of the Stanford Program on International & Cross-Cultural Education (SPICE). Member of the USJC Board of Councilors Dr. Daniel Okimoto (who is also Stanford Professor Emeritus of Political Science) made remarks at the ceremony, and USJC members including Associate Rylan Sekiguchi (who wrote this article for SPICE) were in attendance.
Consul General Yamada pinning the ribbon on Dr. Mukai