Audrey Yamamoto Reflects on Strength of USJC’s Government Ties

The past month has been filled with incredibly memorable moments that reflect the strength of USJC’s reputation and relationships with our key government stakeholders both in the United States and in Japan.

While in Tokyo at the end of May, I was able to thank Ambassador Rahm Emanuel and his team at the Embassy for selecting us as their partner for the Mineta Ambassadors Program, met with Japan’s Cabinet Secretary for Public Affairs, SHIKATA Noriyuki, and we featured Japan’s Digital Minister KONO Taro at our Board of Councilors (BOC) reception organized by our BOC chair, Ernie Higa. Minister KONO discussed a range of timely issues, including the differing approaches that governments have taken to regulate AI.

In the United States, our relationships with the Consuls General of Japan continue to thrive. Consul General OSUMI Yo of San Francisco graciously hosted a reception for our Board of Directors as part of our board retreat that included 20 of our 22 board members who flew in from all over the country and Japan.

Since stepping into my role, I’ve been honored and touched by the welcome dinners hosted by Consul General KODAMA Yoshinori of Honolulu, Consul General SONE Kenko of Los Angeles, Consul General YANAGI Jun of Chicago and Consul General & Ambassador of Japan MORI Mikio of New York. Our shared commitment to strengthening ties between our two countries has fostered an enduring relationship that has been core to USJC’s growth and success.

It was also a tremendous honor during my recent visit to DC to meet with Ambassador of Japan to the United States, YAMADA Shigeo and his wonderful team. We discussed the unprecedented strength of the bilateral relationship as well as ways we might work together given our collective ties to the Japanese American community. I am also deeply grateful to Hawaii Representative Jill Tokuda and California Representative Mark Takano for making time to meet and for their continued support of USJC.

I look forward to continuing to build and strengthen our relationships with all of our key government stakeholders in the months and years ahead as we enter an exciting new era for U.S.-Japan relations.

With warmest regards,