Japan America Society of Chicago Highlights Over the Years:
1930: First Official meeting at the Palmer House Hilton. Close ties with the Art Institute are established, as they designed the first logo
1931: Women’s Committee is formed; plan events such as an exhibit of Japanese dolls
1931: First formal event of the Society, dinner at the Grand Ball Room in the Palmer House Hilton for the Japanese Prince and Princess Takamatsu
1931: Luncheon for the Japanese Consul in Chicago, Atsushi Kimura, first Honorary Vice-President of the Society
1931: Dinner in honor of Japanese Ambassador Katsuji Debuchi, Honorary President of the Society
1932: Recital of Japanese music with the Yoshida Players at the Art Institute
1933: Charles Hibbard Chandler, first President of the Society, hosts tea ceremony in Prince Takamatsu and his bride, Princess Kikuko, in his Evanston home
1933: Reception for the Japanese Ambassador during Japan Day at the Century of Progress World’s Fair in 1933
1934: Dinner for the Prince and Princess Kaya of Japan at the Army and Navy Club
1935: Formal dinner held in honor of Prince Takamatsu
1935: Formal dinner held in the fall at the Lake Shore Club (co-sponsored) to watch the Ambassador to Japan, Hiroshi Saito, present Society Vice-President John H. Wigmore with the Order of the Sacred Treasure
1937: Society hosts luncheon for the Japanese Economic Mission to the United States, and a formal dinner for the twenty five members was hosted by Society Secretary Marion R. Weddell at her Glencoe home
1937: “Some Phases of Japanese-American Relations, 1906-1936″ presented by Professor Harley F. MacNair
1958: Luncheon for Ambassador Koichiro Asakai
1960: Reception for Crown Prince Akihito and Princess Michiko
1964: Dinner held for Shintaro Fukushima, Japanese Representative to the United Nations
1965: Dinner in honor of Ambassador to Japan Edwin O. Reischauer
1965: Conductor Seiji Ozawa receives Honorary Membership in the Society
1966: Dinners in honor of legal scholar Kenzo Takayanagi, noted Japanese architect Yuchiro Kojiro, reception/dinner for UN representative of Japan Akira Matsui
1967: Reception in honor of Ambassador to Japan U. Alexis Johnson and Consul General Umeo Kagei
1979: Reception for his Excellency Nobuhiko Ushiba, Minister of State for External Economic Affairs
1980: “Japan’s Middle East Policy and Japan-US Relations in Middle East Affairs” presented by Ambassador Yoshihiro Nakayama
1981: Host of Biennial National Conference of the Associated Japan America Societies of the US
1981: “Perspectives on US-Japan Trade” presented by Undersecretary for International Trade Administration, Lionel H. Olmer
1982: “Current Issues on US Japan Trade” presented by Minister of Economic Affairs, Embassy of Japan, Jiro Aikoh
1982: “Japan-America Relations: The View from the Diet” presented by Japanese Diet members Saburou Saigusa, Takamori Makino, and Mrs. Mayumi Moriyama
1983: “An Evening with Toshiro Mifune”
1984: Chicagoland Japan Conference, attended by over 300 secondary school teachers
1984: First trip to Japan by Chicago Mayor, Harold Washington
1985: “The Chicago-Japan Connection: Future Prospects for Cooperation and Exchange” luncheon presented by Mayor Harold Washington
1985: Breakfast meeting with Japanese parliamentarians
1986: “On the Life and Work of Author Yuko Mishima” presented by Susan Napier, Princeton University
1986: Preview of Kabuki Faust, directed by Shozo Sato
1987: “The Crisis of the Free Trade System and Responses by Japan and the United States,” a luncheon presentation by Ambassador Kazuo Chiba, former chairman of GATT
1987: Kabuki Othello, directed by Shozo Sato
1988: Dinner for Prime Minister Noboru Takeshita, with over 900 attendees
1988: “Japan-US Trade Relations: Recent Advances and Future Prospects” presented by the Honorable Taizo Watanabe, Ministry of Foreign Affairs
1989: “Trade at the Crossroads: How will the US Negotiate its Trading Place in the 1990s?” presented by Ambassador Michael Smith, former Deputy United States Representative
1990: “The Second Chicago Symposium: Japanese Power in the Post Cold War Era: Implications for United States-Japan Relations” Symposium banquet address by former Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone
1990: “The Positive in Dealing with Japan” presented by Robert Galvin, Chairman of the Executive Committee of Motorola
1990: “The Best of Two Worlds: Successful Marketing in Japan and America” Ronald J. Gidwitz, President and CEO of Helene Curtis Inc.
1990: report on the G-7 Houston summit. Taizo Watanabe, Director-General for the Public Information and Cultural Affairs. Formerly Deputy Chief of Mission of the Embassy of Japan in Washington, DC
1990: “Japanese and American Securities Markets: Comparisons and Connections” presented by former Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission David S. Ruder
1990: “Structural Impediments Initiative: Deregulation of the Japanese Distribution System” featuring Mr. Tatsuo Aoki, Chairman of Credit Saison and former Deputy President of Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank
1990: New membership reception featuring Mr. Lindo Piedta, Diamond Stars Motor Company
1991: “The Japanese Challenge: A View from Tokyo,” an address by US Ambassador to Japan, Dr. Michael H. Armacost
1992: “A Cold Peace: America , Japan, Germany and the struggle for Supremacy” presented by Dr. Jeffrey Garten, managing director of the Blackstone Group, former holder of senior staff positions in the Nixon, Ford, Carter and Clinton administrations
1992: First Annual Business Camp held to bring together over fifty Japanese and America executives.
1993: “Japan and the United States in a Changing World” His Excellency, Takakazu Kuriyama, Ambassador of Japan to the US
1993: “Effects of Social Change on Japanese Business Practices” presented by Taichi Sakaiya, best-selling author from Japan.
1994: “America and Japan- Building an Asia-Pacific Community”, Honoralbe Walter F. Mondale, Ambassador of the United States to Japan
1995: “The Role of Humor in Cross-Cultural Communication: The Perils of an Interpreter”, presented by Masumi Muramatsu, Chairman of Simul International, interpreter
1995: “State of the Japanese Economy: Where It’s At and Where It’s Headed”, Mr. Yoshinori Okuda, President, Nihon Keizai Shimbun America
1996: “The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter” presented by Kageboushi Theater Company of Tokyo
1996: “Reforming Japan: The Political Process” a luncheon presentation by Rep. Iwao Matsuda, Member of the Lower House, the Diet of Japan, New Frontier Party
1996: A visit from former movie queen of Japanese cinema, Ryoko Nakano
1997: “Open Skies and US Trade Agreements with Japan in Today’s Perspective” presented by I.W. “Bill” Beagles, President of the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan and President, Boeing Japan
1999: Dinner in honor of Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi, with an attendance of 1,000
2000: The Society hosts the John Manjiro Grassroots Summit, with over 300 Japanese participants
2001: “Revival of the Japanese Economy” presented by Taichi Sakaiya, Special Adviser to the Prime Minister of Japan
2002: “The Future of Japan’s Economy” featuring Mr. Minoru “Ben” Makihara, Chairman Mitsubishi Corporation, Vice Chairman, Nippon Keidanren (The Japan Business Federation)
2003: “An Evening with Shozo Sato”
2004: “The Toyota Vision: Challenges and Realization” business executive luncheon featuring Yoshimi Inaba, Senior Managing Director, Toyota Motors Japan
2006: “Elvis Has Left the Building: Goodbye Mr. Koizumi and Welcome Mr. Abe” presented by Gerald Curtis, Burgess Professor of Political Science, Columbia University
2007: “Building Global Brands in Japan: Lessons Learned from Kellogg’s and McDonald’s” presented by Ken G. Kabira, Executive Vice President, Lipman Hearne
2007: “Hello Kitty: The Global Brand with Nine Lives” presented by Ken Belson, Business Reporter, New York Times
2007: “The Only Woman in the Room: A Memoir” presented by Beate Sirota Gordon
2008: “Toyota’s Transformation from Importer to a Leading Manufacturer in North America” presented by Dennis Cuneo, Executive Advisor and General Counsel, Toyota Boshoku America
2008: “McDonald’s Japan: The Success of the Plan to Win Campaign” presented by Sarah Casanova, Senior Vice President, Business Development, McDonald’s Japan
2008: “Boeing and Japan: A Global Benchmark for Strategic Industrial Collaboration” presented by Nicole Piasecki, Vice President, Boeing International and President, Boeing Japan
2008: “Japan’s Structural Reform: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow” presented by Professor Heizo Takenaka, Keio University and former Minister of Internal Affairs and Communications and Minister of State for the Privatization of Postal Services in the Cabinet of Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi
2009: “Japan and America: Building Upon the Ichiro Effect” presented by the Honorable George Hisaeda, Consul General of Japan, Consulate General of Japan at Chicago
2009: Japan Student Network Reception
2009: Board of Governors Dinner Address “The Emerging East Asian Community and U.S.-Japanese Relations” presented by Dr. Akira Iriye
2010: “The Only Women in the Room: A Memoir” presented by Beate Sirota Gordon, worked at General MacArthur’s headquarters on a team charged with writing a new constitution for Japan
2010: “Shall We Train-Travel?” and “High Speed Shinkansen (Bullet Trains) and Eco Design” presented by Naoyuki Agawa, Professor, Keio University and Tetsuo Fukuda, Professor of Advanced Institute of Industrial Technology and Industrial Designer
2010: “Thoughts on the Future of the U.S.-Japan Free Trade Agreement” presented by Noboru Hatakeyama, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Japan Economic Foundation
2010: Board of Governors Annual Dinner “The Paths I Have Followed- A Physicist’s Story”, featuring Dr. Yoichiro Nambu, The Harry Pratt Judson Professor Emeritus, The University of Chicago, Recipient of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physics
2010: 80th Anniversary Piano Concert featuring Fuzjko Hemming, Pianist
2011: “The Global Economy in 2011 and Beyond” presented by David D. Hale, Founding Chairman, David Hale Global Economics
2011: Japan Student Network Reception
2011: Japan Earthquake/Tsunami Relief Fund
2012: Kizuna: The Bonds of Emotion Japanese Earthquake Photo Exhibition
2012: “Challenges and Future Academic and Career Opportunities for a Bilingual Generation” panel featuring Shingo Satsunai, College of DuPage; Natsuki Piazza, North DuPage Special Education Cooperative; Fudehito Niwa, The US-Japan Education Exchange Council & Naoto Takayanagi, Pasona NA
1988-2003: Adlai Stevenson, Chairman, SC&M Investnment Management Corp.
2004-2005: Keikichi Honda, Chairman, NCR Japan & Glenn Tilton, Chairman & CEO, United Airlines
2006-2007: Glenn Tilton, Chairman & CEO, United Airlines
2008-Present: Michael H. Moskow, Vice Chairman & Senior Fellow on the Global Economy, The Chicago Council n Global Affairs
1969: Mr. Kayoshi Togasaki, President of Rotary International
1971: Mr. Shiro Kashiwa, Assistant Attorney General of the United States
1972: Mr. Oliver Statler, Author-lecturer
1974: Robert S. Ingersoll, Deputy Secretary of State, US Department of State
1975: Robert S. Ingersoll, Former Ambassador of US to Japan, Deputy Secretary of State, US Department of State
1976: Frank Gibney, “1776-1868: Two Revolutions and their Descendents”
1977: The Honorable James D. Hodgson, Former US Ambassador to Japan
1978: His Excellency Fumihiko Togo, Japanese Ambassador to US
1979: The Honorable James R. Thompson, Governor of State of Illinois
1980: Yoshio Okawara, Ambassador of Japan to the United States
1981: Ambassador Robert S. Ingersoll, recipient of The First Class Order of the Rising Sun
1982: The Honorable Michio Mizoguchi
1983: The Honorable Charles H. Percy
1984: Honorable Moriyuki Motono
1985: Professor Ezra F. Vogel, Harvard University
1987: Akio Morita, Chairman and CEO of Sony Corporation
1988: Mr. Stephen Wolf of UAL Corporation United Airlines, “Important Role of Corporate Citizenship in Enhancing and Stabilizing US-Japan Bilateral Relations”
1989: Mr. Scott E. Pardee, Chairman of Yamaichi International (America) Inc
1990: Mr. Toshiaki Ogasawara, Chairman and Publisher of the Japan Times, Japan’s leading English language daily, “The United States and Japan: The Relationship in the Nineties”
1991: Honorable Takako Doi, Member of the Diet, Chairperson, Social Democratic Party of Japan, “Japan’s Role in the International Community”
1992: Takashi Oka, Senior Correspondent, Christian Science Monitor, “Japan and the United States: Non-military Power in the post-Cold War Era”
1993: Ambassador of Japan to UN, the Honorable Yoshio Hatano, “Japan in the New United Nations”
1994: Dr. Koji Taira, Professor of Economics and Industrial Relations at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, “Will the Rising Sun Set?”
1995: Ambassador Nicholas Platt, President, The Asia Society, “The United States and Japan in Asia”
1996: Mr. Noboru Hatakeyama, President of JETRO, “Friendly Advice to America from an Old Friend”
1997: Honorable Yoshio Okawara former Ambassador of Japan to US (1981-1985), “The Changing Context of US-Japan Relations”
1998: His Excellency Kunihiko Saito, Ambassador of Japan to the United States, “The Status of US-Japan Relations”
1999: Honorable Akiko Yamanaka, Member of Japanese Diet, “The Role of Women in Japanese Society”
2000: Honorable Shunji Yanai, Ambassador of Japan to the US.
2001: James Cantalupo, Vice Chairman and President of McDonald’s Corporation, “McDonald’s in Japan: Perspective on a Thirty Year Relationship”
2002: Honorable Ryozo Kato. Ambassador of Japan to the US, “Where did Japan go?”
2003: A special performance by Yukiko Ogura, Viola, Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and an instrumental medley by Yoko Noge & Jazz Me Blues
2004: Mutsuyoshi Nishimura, Ambassador of Japan to Mexico. Former Consul General of Japan at Chicago, “My Views on America”
2005: Guest chefs from United Airlines/Signature Room
2006: Dr. Lee Gurga. award-winning haiku poet and former editor of Modern Haiku, the oldest and most respected journal of haiku and haiku studies outside Japan. He is a past president of the Haiku Society of America.
2007: David W. Grzelak, Chairman and CEO, Komatsu America Corp. “Komatsu: Managing a Japanese Company in North America”
2008: Michael R. Lufrano, Senior Vice President, Community Affairs and General Counsel, Chicago Cubs “The International Past Time: Traditions and Connections between Baseball, Japan and Wrigley Field.
2009: Dr. Kazuo Kawasaki, Design Director, Doctor of Medical Science, Professor of Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University, Professor Emeritus at Nagoya City University. “Japanese Designs – From Eyeglasses to Artificial Organ Technology”
2010: Professor Theodore C. Bestor, Chair of the Department of Anthropology, Social Anthropology Program, Harvard University
2011: Ambassador Robert M. Orr, U.S. Executive Director to the Asian Development Bank. “The U.S.-Japan Relationships of the Asian Development Bank”.
2012: Ambassador Rust M. Deming, Adjunct Professor, Japan Studies, John Hopkins University and Former Director of the Office of Japanese Affairs.
1930-1937 Charles H. Chandler, Professor, University of Chicago
1937-1939 Russell Tyson
1939-1962 John H. Weddell
1962-1963 Raymond J. Graham
1963-1964 Galen E. Russell, former pastor of the Tokyo Union Church
1964-1966 Lafeton Whitney, Executive Director of the Wiebolt Foundation; General in US Air Force; Savings, Promotions, Harris Trust and Savings Bank
1966-1973 Harry A. Olsen, Partner, Arthur Andersen & Co.
1973-1975 A. Robert Abboud, Chairman, The First National Bank of Chicago; President, Occidental Petroleum Corp.
1975 Russell Baker, Senior Partner, Baker & McKenzie
1975-1977 James H. Ingersoll, Vice President, External Affairs, Borg-Warner Corporation
1977-1979 Donald Eriksen, Senior Partner, Arthur Anderson & Co.
1979-1981 Alfred F. Miossi, Executive Vice President and Director of International Affairs, Continental Illinois National Bank and Trust Company of Chicago
1981-1984 Thomas H. Hague, Assistant to Chairman and Area Director- Asia, Borg-Warner Corporation
1984-1985 Hon. Adlai E. Stevenson, SC&M Investment Management Corp.
1985-1988 Thomas Coulter, CEO, Chicago Association of Commerce and Industry; Executive Vice President, Lester B. Knight & Associates, Inc.; Director, Chicago-Tokyo Bank
1988-1992 Jack D. Beem, Partner, Baker & McKenzie
1993-1995 Clyde Dickey, Partner and Director of International Business, Arthur Anderson & Co.
1996 Dennis Britton, EVP and Editor, Chicago Sun-Times
1996-1999 Clyde O. Bowles, Jr., President, Burditt, Bowles & Radzius, Chtd.; Principal, Bowles, Keating, Hering, Matuszewich & Fiordalisi; Rooks Pitts
2000-2005 Thomas McMenamin, Vice President, Principal, Masuda, Funai, Eifert & Mitchell, Ltd.
2006-2007 John A. Challenger, Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.
2007-2008 Edward A. Grant (Principal, Arthur Andersen LLP), Sam Cremin (Director of Marketing Communications, Molex, Inc.) and Shunichiro Kishioka (Chairman, I.T.A., Inc.)
2008-Present Edward A. Grant, Principal, Arthur Andersen LLP
2012 The Honorable J.D. Bindenagel, Special Advisor to the President for International and Global Chicago Affairs, DePaul University
2003 Dr. Shozo Sato, Kabuki Master
2006 Lee Gurga, American Haiku author
2007 John R. Anderson, Anderson Gardens
2008 Lucien Stryk, Translator and Writer of Zen poetry
2009 Dr. Janice a. Katz, The Art Institute of Chicago
2010 Tatsu Aoki, Asian aRts Improv Midwest
2011 Fujima Shunojo, Japanese Classical Dance
2012 Kimiko Gunji, Japan House, University of Illinois at Champaign, Urbana
Recent School of the Art Institute of Chicago Scholarship Award Recipients:
2006: Reina Williams
2007: Adam Janusz
2008: Kathleen Lynee Kutsche
2009: Elgin Bokaru T. Smith
2010: Michael Chlebowski
2011: Cheryl-Ann Fakes
2012: Emma Bottari
2012: New Trier Winnetka (Illinois Science Olympiad First Place Overall, High School Division)
2012: Adlai E. Stevenson High School (Illinois Science Olympiad Second Place Overall, High School Division)
Nambu Award Committee:
Komatsu America Corp.
Mitsubishi Electronic Automation, Inc.
Mitsubishi Engine North American, Inc.
Mitsubishi International Corp.
Nippon Steel U.S.A., Inc.
1968: November 15: establishment of “the Japan America Society of Chicago-John H. and Marion R. Weddell Scholarship” administered by the school of the art institute of Chicago and is awarded annually to provide financial assistance to art students of Japanese ancestry. (1976: “The idea of a scholarship fund was developed as a means of giving continuing recognition to the years of unselfish service and support which Mr. and Mrs. John H. Weddell gave to the Society from its earliest days in the 1930s to recent time. The fund was established and in operation while the Weddells were still living. Now, both are gone from our midst but the Fund serves as a living memorial reflecting the objectives of the Society which they believed in so deeply. Mrs. Weddell had served as Secretary in 1937 and was long a Director and active member of many of the Society’s Committees. Mr. Weddell was the Society’s President before, during and after World War II. He served to preserve continuity in the Society during a trying period and led the Society in its post-war reactivation.”
1970: Michi Ouchi, Fabric and fiber design (first recipient)
1971-3: Grace Kozumi ,Commercial Art
1974: Tae Terumoto, Fiber and Fashion Painting
1975-6: Dan Kwong ,Drawing, Painting and Print Making
1977-78: Gail Ishikawa ,Ceramics
1978-80: Janice Tanaka, Video
1983: Hiromi T. Benedict and Robert M. Hashimoto
1983: Established Scholarship Foundation for students pursing the study of the United States- Japan relations or other areas of study involving Japan.
1983: James Ketelaar, University of Chicago
1984: Denise M. Anker, Kellogg School, Northwestern University.
1985: Jennifer M. Holt, Political Science, University of Chicago; Mr. James A. Fujii, Far Eastern Languages and Civilizations, University of Chicago.
1986: Edmund Gilday, Department of Religion, University of Chicago.
1987: Peter Oehlkers, Communication Studies, Northwestern University.
1988: Julia Thomas, University of Chicago.
1989: Judith Stubbs, Art History, University of Chicago.
1990: Richard D. Leitch, Jr., University of Illinois at Champaign Urbana.
1991: Robert Mark Griswold, University of Chicago; Elizabeth Falconer, Augustana College.
1992-1993: Ellen Scattergood, University of Michigan at Ann Arbor; John O. Falconer, University of Iowa
1994: Eric C. Rath, University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.; John Montag, University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.
1995: Trey Hoffman, Art History, University of Wisconsin-Madison; John Clayton, Indiana University of Bloomington.
1985: Lillian Nishimura and Debbie Yee
2002: Dane Hisashi Toshima and Robert Kenshi Becraft
2004: Mary Koga
June 4, 2009
Dr. Kazuo Kawasaki
Doctor of Medical Science
Professor of Graduate School of Engineering, Osaka University
Professor Emeritus at Nagoya City University
April 14, 2010
Beate Sirota Gordon
Worked at General MacArthur’s headquarters on a team charged with writing a new constitution for Japan
September 16, 2010
Dr. Yoichiro Nambu
The Harry Platt Judson Professor Emeritus, The University of Chicago, Recipient of the 2008 Nobel Prize in Physics
June 9, 2011
Ambassador Robert M. Orr Executive Director, Asian Development Bank
September 27, 2011
Leo Melamed Former Chairman of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Chairman Emeritus of the CME Group, Inc.
December 15, 2011
Dr. Ei-Ichi Negishi Herbert C. Brown Distinguished Professor of Chemistry, Purdue University and recipient of the 2010 Nobel Prize in Chemistry