The Women in Business Summit, held on May 27 in Tokyo as part of the 2014 USJC Japan Week, was co-hosted by USJC and the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ACCJ). More than 700 attendees and dozens of journalists gathered for this sold-out event.
The day-long Summit kicked off with a star-studded special program featuring Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (see highlights of his remarks here), Ambassador Caroline Kennedy (read her speech here), USJC President Irene Hirano Inouye, ACCJ President Jay Ponazecki, USJC Member and pioneer of the Womenomics movement Kathy Matsui, and four revolutionary women leaders. Ms. Deborah Gillis, President & CEO of Catalyst and herself a Keynote Speaker, presented a special commendation to Prime Minister Abe for making the advancement of women a priority in Japan. (See the Catalyst press release here). Minister of State for Gender Equality Masako Mori also represented the Government of Japan, discussing specific measures and goals. Irene Hirano Inouye and the other speakers emphasized the importance of shifting the mindset of both genders and all generations, in order to instigate change.
Several female USJC Members, each leaders in their fields, also moderated some of the twelve breakout sessions. These sessions talked about various aspects of women in leadership, including leveraging diversity, having role models and returning to work after leaving for family. Three alumnae of the TOMODACHI MetLife Women's Leadership Program attended the Summit, and actively engaged with USJC Members and other leaders throughout the Conference.
Corporate leaders also spoke at the breakout sessions, drawing upon their experience as executives and family members.
For more information on the Summit, read the post-event press release here.
See photos from the summit here.
See a recap video (courtesy of ACCJ) here.