U.S.-Japan Council

U.S.-Japan Council Annual Conference

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U.S.-Japan Connections: Driving Growth, Security & Sustainability

October 8th-11th, 2014 in Honolulu, Hawaii

Register Now

Save up to $75 by registering before August 11!
General Admission: $250 (regularly $325)
Council Members: $195 (regularly $245)
Associate Members and Young Professionals up to age 35: $150 (regularly $175)


USJC is proud to present the Fifth Annual Conference in Honolulu, Hawaii in October 2014. The Annual Conference brings together regional, national and international leaders from government, business, academia and non-profit sectors to discuss current issues and opportunities impacting U.S.-Japan relations. With its historical, cultural and strategic significance in the Asia Pacific, Hawaii is the perfect venue for a Conference that connects the East and West.

USJC seeks to highlight Hawaii’s unique value to Japanese and U.S. mainland businesses, including industries such as tourism and hospitality, clean energy and technology, culinary and more. Over 500 attendees are expected from throughout the United States and Japan, and will exhibit innovation and entrepreneurship that can take place through international collaboration. USJC has an active membership in Hawaii, and has held many events in Honolulu, but this will be the first Annual Conference held in Hawaii. The Conference will showcase Hawaii leaders in breakout sessions and round table exchanges, and connect local individuals with visitors from across the country or abroad.

The 2014 USJC Annual Conference is made possible by our generous sponsors. To learn about sponsorship opportunities for the 2014 USJC Annual Conference, contact Development Director Georgette Furukawa-Martinez at gfurukawa-martinez[at]usjapancouncil.org.

Schedule of Events

Wednesday, October 8 - Pre-Conference Programming
Neighbor Island Visits: Maui (Clean Energy/Technology) & Kauai (Agriculture/Sustainability) (separate all day trips. Space limited, itineraries and prices to be announced. Contact sgraves[at]usjapancouncil.org for more information)

Thursday, October 9 - Opening Day (at the Hilton Hawaiian Village, unless noted otherwise
Optional Local Interest Tours (offered from Thursday - Sunday, packages and prices to be announced)
3:30pm - Council Member Briefing
5:30pm - Opening Reception (Royal Hawaiian)
9:00pm - Evening Cocktails and Networking

by invitation only:
11:00am - Emerging Leaders Program Orientation
11:00am - Emerging Leaders Program Alumni Meeting
1:30pm - Board of Directors Meeting
3:30pm - Japanese and Japanese American Business Network Meeting
7:30pm - Sponsors & VIP Dinner (Halekulani)
7:30pm - Members Dinners (no host, various restaurants in Waikiki)
7:30pm - ELP Dinner

Friday, October 10 - Annual Conference Public Symposium (all-day)
7:00am - Registration Opens
8:30am - Annual Conference Public Program (all-day)
6:00pm - Closing Reception

by invitation only:
8:00pm - Emerging Leaders Program Alumni Dinner

Saturday, October 11 - Annual Members' Meeting (at the Hawaii Convention Center, unless noted otherwise)
9:30am - Members' Day General Session
10:15am - Member Engagement Sessions
2:00pm - OffSite Member Programming (offsite)
6:30pm - Members' Day Closing Reception (offsite)

by invitation only:
7:45am - Joint Board Meeting

Keynote Speakers

• Admiral Harry B. Harris, Jr., Commander, United States Pacific Fleet
• Ms. Marillyn A. Hewson, Chairman, President & CEO, Lockheed Martin Corporation
• Mr. Masami Iijima, President & CEO, Mitsui & Co., Ltd.

Invitations are extended to other Japanese and U.S. government and business keynote speakers.

Panel Discussions (Subject to Change)

Entrepreneurial Mindset for Business Success
This session focuses on the need in both the United States and Japan for entrepreneurial thinking in our cultures in order to remain vibrant economies with bright futures. Discussion areas include identifying where innovation and entrepreneurship are flourishing, capitalizing on these opportunities and how it all integrates into a strategic plan for local economies and individual companies.

- Ms. Susan Yamada, Executive Director, Pacific Asian Center for Entrepreneurship, University of Hawaii at Manoa (moderator)
- Amb. John V. Roos, Former Ambassador Extraordinary & Plenipotentiary of the United States to Japan
- Mr. Warren Haruki, President & CEO, Grove Farm Company, Inc.
- Ms. Merle Aiko Okawara, Chairman, JC Comsa Corp.

Diversity & Inclusion in the Global Marketplace
Diversity & Inclusion addresses untapped business opportunities and unmet societal challenges. The goal of this session is to explore practical solutions on how both the Japanese and Japanese American experiences can help bridge the D&I gap in Japan. We have four inspiring global and inclusive leaders from Japan and the U.S. sharing best practices on the do’s and don’ts of Diversity & Inclusion initiatives. To function in our global marketplace and communities, it’s imperative to have a diverse and inclusive lens.

- Ms. Janelle Sasaki, Executive Director of Diversity & Inclusion, Ernst & Young Advisory Co., Ltd. (moderator)
- Ms. Phyllis Campbell, Chairman, Pacific Northwest Region, JPMorgan Chase & Co.
- Ms. Makiko Fukui, President, Harmony Residence, Inc.
- Mr. Yuta Hasumi, Talent Management and Diversity & Inclusion Manager, Dow Chemical, Japan
- Dr. Curtiss Takada Rooks, Associate Dean, Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts, Loyola Marymount University

Serving Up Culinary Diplomacy through Collaboration
Food is a significant economic driver and an important identity in all cultures. Sharing a meal is one of the oldest diplomatic tools and promotes cross-cultural dialogue and understanding, organically transcending boundaries and creating bridges. This session explores the catalytic role of food in promoting people-to-people and business relations between countries. Presentations will chronicle and share the experience of the chefs participating in the Culinary Festival at this year’s Annual Conference and provide insight into how the collaboration of chefs and culinary events can strengthen U.S.-Japan relations.

- Mr. Stephen Kagawa, President & CEO, The Pacific Bridge Companies (moderator)
- Chairman Masaki Ukai, Chairman of the Board, Ukai Co.
- Chef Roy Yamaguchi, Chef & Restaurateur, Roy’s
Additional speakers to be announced soon.

Insights into the U.S.-Japan Security Relationship
This session will explore the U.S.-Japan security relationship through senior U.S. and Japanese political, military, and diplomatic perspectives. Topics will include both “hard power” elements, such as the role of the alliance in maintaining regional stability, and “soft power” dimensions such as political and civil society engagement.

- Mr. Torkel Patterson, President, The Northeast Maglev (moderator)
- Hon. Tulsi Gabbard, U.S. House of Representatives (D-HI2)
- LT Jaden Risner, Lieutenant, United States Navy
- Min. Shigeo Yamada, Minister, Political Section, Embassy of Japan
Additional speakers to be announced soon.

Principles for Clean Energy Investments
This session will examine the implementation of clean energy initiatives and will provide guiding principles for energy investments in the areas of political/strategic communications, economics and energy technology. Case studies will be presented about Japan, Hawaii, and U.S. mainland about the tradeoff decisions in implementation through the lenses of the three topic areas.

- Ms. Dawn Lippert, Director, Energy Excelerator, Pacific International Center for High Technology Research (PICHTR) (moderator)
- RADM David M. Boone, USN (Ret.), Vice President, Strategic Development, CB&I
- Ms. Connie Lau, President & CEO, Hawaiian Electric Industries, Inc.
Additional speakers to be announced soon.

Economic Development through Tourism & Events
This session will look at successful tourism markets and how to promote international accessibility, including the impact on community and economic development. Case studies will be presented from Japan, Hawaii, and mainland United States on the development of major conferences with events of international participation.

- Mr. Randall Tanaka, President & CEO, The First Step (moderator)
- Mr. Aaron Wodin-Schwartz, Director, Public Policy, BrandUSA
Additional speakers to be announced soon.

Voices of the TOMODACHI Generation
This session will provide information about the TOMODACHI Initiative and showcase the voices from the TOMODACHI Generation, including a short presentation on the “life cycle” spectrum of exchange programs and story sharing by young people who have participated in various programs at different stages of the life cycle. Speakers will highlight the diversity of programs in TOMODACHI and demonstrate its extensive and transformative impact.

- Mr. Todd Guild, Senior Director, McKinsey & Company, Inc. (moderator)
TOMODACHI participants and alumni to be announced soon.

A Conversation with Biomedical Pioneers
Current issues and opportunities for investment, dialogue and cooperation in the U.S.-Japan relationship in the area of biomedical technology.

Roundtable Discussions (Subject to Change)

New Models of Urban Revitalization & Sustainability
Urban revitalization efforts have focused on smart cities to reduce the negative impacts of urban migration (waste, greenhouse gas emissions and consumption of natural resources) while increasing community engagement, sustainability and energy efficiency and production. Japan alone has developed over 200 smart city projects. Globally, thousands of smart-city projects are collectively worth at least USD 650 billion in 2014. This session will explore new urban models including innovations in disaster resiliency including food, water and energy security, community engagement, and public-private collaboration in financing and planning.

- Ms. Bernice Bowers, Program Director, Center for Environment Research Education & Development (CERED), Asia Pacific (moderator)
- Mr. Jon Wallenstrom, President, Forest City Hawaii
- Dr. Sam Gon, Chief Scientist, The Nature Conservancy
Additional speakers to be announced soon.

Partnerships for Effective Disaster Management (DR3)
The Asia Pacific Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience (APDR3) Network will bring together practitioners and thought leaders from the public and private sectors, civil society and academia from the U.S. and Japan for a roundtable discussion on how to cultivate lasting multi-sectoral partnerships. Participants will learn from case studies of existing partnerships and consider how to scale successful approaches and what gaps still need to be addressed. The dialogue will focus on three stages of disaster management: emergency response, long-term recovery, and risk reduction.

- Ms. Jainey K. Bavishi, Executive Director, Asia Pacific Disaster Risk Reduction and Resilience (APDR3) Network (moderator)
Participants to be announced soon.

U.S.-Japan-Korea Partnership & Educational Exchanges
This discussion will explore grass-roots cultural/educational programs involving youth from the three countries (Korea, Japan, U.S.) that promote understanding and cooperation.

- Mr. Yuuki Shinomiya, Executive Director, International Student Conferences, Inc.
Additional speakers to be announced soon.

Capitalizing on Growth Opportunities Abroad
This session will explore growth strategies between the United States and Japan in the context of encouraging companies to expand activities overseas. Speakers will discuss how traditional companies with large overseas operations are capitalizing on these opportunities and new ways to globalize their business. Special attention will be given to Japanese monetary and fiscal policies designed to stimulate economic growth.

- Mr. Tab Bowers, Executive Vice President, Marketing, Business and Product Development, American Savings Bank (moderator)
- Vice Min. Norihiko Ishiguro, Vice Minister for International Affairs, METI
- Mr. Masaaki Tanaka, Deputy President, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group, Inc.
Additional speakers to be announced soon.


Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort
2005 Kalia Rd
Honolulu, Hawaii 96815
United States Map and Directions
Limited special room rates available upon registration. Call 1-808-949-4321 and mention USJC Annual Conference rates:
Resort View rooms (1 King or 2 Double) - $189/night
Ocean View rooms (1 King) - $239/night
Rainbow Tower Ocean Front rooms (1 King) - $289/night

Members Day events on Saturday, October 11 will take place at the Hawaii Convention Center, with shuttle service provided from the Hilton Hawaiian Village

More Information

2014 Annual Conference Honolulu Host Committee

Chairs: Wendy Abe and Eric Takahata

Development and Fundraising: Mike Hirai and Colbert Matsumoto
Hospitality and Family Activities: Randall Tanaka and Dennis Teranishi
Opening Day Activities: Christine Kubota
VIP, Media and Volunteer Outreach: Lori Teranishi
Regional Outreach: Jan Yanehiro

For more information, contact Program Manager Shane Graves at sgraves[at]usjapancouncil.org or call us at 202-223-6840.


To learn about sponsorship opportunities for the 2014 USJC Annual Conference, contact Development Director Georgette Furukawa-Martinez at gfurukawa-martinez[at]usjapancouncil.org.


2013 U.S.-Japan Council Annual Conference

2012 U.S.-Japan Council Annual Conference

2011 U.S.-Japan Council Annual Conference

2010 U.S.-Japan Council Annual Conference
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