Archive for February 2014

Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission Announces Harry Hill as New Chairman

February 18, 2014 – 

The Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission and the U.S. CULCON Panel are pleased to announce the appointment of a new Chairman, Mr. Harry A. Hill.

Mr. Hill, a native of New York City, has served as President and CEO of Oak Lawn Marketing, a branding and media company that owns Shop Japan, the largest infomercial brand in Japan, since 2006. He brings with him a wealth of experience related to educational and cultural exchange and entrepreneurship, having lived and worked in Japan for nearly thirty years.  Mr. Hill served as a participant on the Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme and its precursor program, the Monbusho English Fellows from 1987-1990 in Gifu Prefecture, where he created a strong network of individuals and government officials who would later help him in building his professional career.   His extensive professional experience includes founding H&R Consultants, a leading lease providing and relocation service in Tokyo and Nagoya.  In addition, Mr. Hill has been actively involved in numerous charitable

Senator John D. Rockefeller IV Receives the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun

February 12, 2014 – 

On February 12, 2014, the Government of Japan conferred upon Senator John D. Rockefeller IV the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun in recognition of his significant contributions to strengthening and promoting both the economic relationship and mutual understanding between Japan and the United States.  Following the full text of Senator Rockefeller’s prepared remarks upon receiving the honor:


I extend my deepest appreciation and gratitude to Emperor Akihito for extending the Grand Cordon Order of the Rising Sun to me.  I am deeply honored to receive this recognition.

Ambassador Sasae, thank you for opening your home tonight for this ceremony.  I want to thank my family for being here – Sharon, John, Valerie and Steve, Charles and Justin.

I also welcome so many friends, colleagues, and distinguished guests.  I am deeply moved by your presence tonight. Some of you have traveled a great distance to be here. I am enormously appreciative of your support.

In a vastly unstable and increasingly dangerous world, the United States has no more important friend and ally than Japan.  Our deep ties have created peace, and prosperity, for both of our countries.  Ours is a classically stable relationship. It is based on more than 60 years of working together, to advance our deeply intertwined economic, and political, interests.

We have enjoyed a deep friendship rooted in our mutual values, like service and dedication to our family and country. The relationship has been cemented through trust and genuine affection for each other, our histories, and our culture.

I have… » READ MORE