TOMODACHI Go for Gold Program Brings Japanese Youth to the United States and Celebrates the Power of Sports Displayed from the Tokyo 2020, through Paris 2024 and to Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games

WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S.-Japan Council and TOMODACHI Initiative have brought ten Japanese undergraduate students to the United States as part of the 2024 TOMODACHI – U.S. Embassy Go for Gold Sports Leadership Program, which is held in partnership with the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo. Participants and a professional mentor will travel to Los Angeles and  New York from February 27 to March 12 to increase the understanding and knowledge of the sports industry in the United States. 

This program was created in 2019 as a legacy program for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympics Games and designed to cultivate global leaders of the next generation and highlight the value of bilateral cooperation between the two nations with focus on advancing the sports industry in Japan.

While in Los Angeles, the delegates will visit numerous facilities to learn about community and facility management and operation of sports complexes, such as Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, BMO Stadium and SoFi Stadium. The delegates will also meet USJC Board Member Joshua Morey (The J. Morey Company, Inc., ELP ‘16), who will lead a panel discussion on sports business in the United States on March 4. USJC Associates Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani (ShibSibs) will take part as panelists. Press are invited to join a special dinner reception following the panel discussion to commemorate the upcoming Paris 2024 and Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games. The reception will celebrate the connection of the Games with Deputy Consul General AOSHIMA Naoshige from the Consulate-General of Japan in Los Angeles. Vice President of DanceSport – Breaking Division Zack Slusser from USA Dance Breaking For Gold will also attend.

The U.S.-Japan Council is proud to partner with the LA84 Foundation, a nationally recognized leader supporting youth sport programs and public education about the role of sports in positive youth development.

The program will conclude with a final presentation in Tokyo that will give students the opportunity to showcase the knowledge they gained abroad and share their ideas about how the power of sports can be used to revitalize communities. Students will present their ideas to an audience that will consist of Japanese government officials and other officials in the sports management industry.

Location: Japanese American National Museum
Date and time: Monday, March 4, 2024 at 6:00pm (PT)
Dress Code: Business Casual Attire
Press Registration:
Email [email protected]

About the U.S.-Japan Council (USJC) and the TOMODACHI Initiative

The U.S.-Japan Council develops and connects global leaders to create a stronger U.S.-Japan relationship. It is an organization whose members believe people-to-people relationships are a powerful way to bring together leaders in the United States and Japan to address and create solutions to mutual concerns. The Council is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit educational organization that was founded by a group of Japanese American leaders in 2009, and in 2012, the U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) was created and in 2013, it became a Public Interest Corporation (koeki zaidan hojin).

The TOMODACHI Initiative is a public-private partnership, born out of support for Japan’s recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake, that invests in the next generation of Japanese and American leaders through educational and cultural exchanges as well as leadership programs. The U.S.-Japan Council (U.S.) and the U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) work in collaboration with the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo to implement the TOMODACHI Initiative as a public-private partnership.  Implementation includes program development and oversight, communications and outreach, marketing, fundraising, donor relations and management and operations.


Izumi Swarts, Program Manager
[email protected]