We are pleased to share that the Government of Japan has informed the U.S.-Japan Council that the late Irene Hirano Inouye will be posthumously awarded with the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon. This national honor recognizes her contributions to promoting friendly relations and mutual understanding between Japan and the United States, as well as sharing the history of Japanese Americans with people in both countries.
In acknowledgement of her contributions, the Embassy states, “She broadly shared the history of Japanese Americans with people in both Japan and the United States and actively promoted various people-to-people exchange programs such as the Japanese American Leadership Delegation and the KAKEHASHI Project. She made significant progress in the relations between Japan and Japanese-Americans, and greatly contributed to promoting friendly relations and mutual understanding between Japan and the United States as a bridge between the two nations.”
Click here to read the press release on the website of the Embassy of Japan in the United States of America.
A collection of more tributes and memories can be found here. For those who wish to honor President Hirano Inouye or send condolences, her family has asked that, in lieu of flowers or cards, contributions in Irene’s name be sent to the U.S.-Japan Council through our website.