2013 Japanese American Leadership Delegation (JALD)
Reflection by Amy Yamashiro
From the JALD website:
The Japanese American Leadership Delegation (JALD) program provides the opportunity for a select group of Japanese American leaders from across the U.S. to travel to Japan to engage with Japanese leaders in the business, government, academic, non-profit and cultural sectors. The trip also allows Japanese leaders to gain a greater understanding of multi-cultural America through the experiences of a diverse group of Japanese Americans. Upon their return, delegates collaborate with program alumni, the local consulates, the U.S.-Japan Council and local and national community organizations to continue strengthening ties between the U.S. and Japan.
The Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), represented in the U.S. by the Embassy of Japan in Washington, DC and 17 consulate general offices, sponsors the program. The U.S.-Japan Council administers and assists with implementation of the program. JALD began in 2000 and 163 delegates have participated to date.
The 2013 Japanese American Leadership Delegation traveled to Japan March 8-16, 2013. For the first time in 12-year program history, the delegation visited Fukushima, one of the hardest hit regions by the March 11th disasters and nuclear crisis. They visited Fukushima Prefectural Medical University, an agricultural monitoring center, an elementary school and participated in the symposium "Towards Common Ground: Connecting Diverse Voices for the Future," sponsored by the Japan Foundation Center for Global Partnership. They then traveled to Tokyo to meet with senior leaders in the business and government sectors including Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida.
This year the southeast was represented by Ms. Amy Yamashiro from Arlington, Virginia. Ms. Yamashiro is the current Data and Evaluation Coordinator for Arlington Public Schools. Her essay on her JALD experience is named Reflection and can be read by clicking on the link above.
For more information on JALD and this year's delegation, please visit the JALD website: www.usjapancouncil.org/programs/program/JALD.