California-Japan Sister Cities Network 2022 Fall Workshop Held

On Nov. 19, the Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles along with fellow co-hosts California-Japan Sister Cities Network and the Consulate General of Japan in San Francisco held the California-Japan Sister Cities Network 2022 Fall Workshop & Reception at the Balboa Recital Hall in San Diego.
To begin, Jessica Censotti, executive director of San Diego International Sister Cities Association gave welcoming remarks, followed by Dr. Michael McQuary, San Diego Unified School District Board Trustee; and Dr. Ulrike Schaede, University of California, San Diego Professor of Japanese business and Director of the Japan Forum for Innovation and Technology. Citing the workshop theme of “Connecting Sister City Youth with Your Community,” Consulate General of Japan in Los Angeles Kenko Sone noted the importance of establishing connections with not only students and young professionals, but also in different areas such as economic exchange and business partnerships. Consul General Sone expressed his hope that active group discussions at the workshop would help pave the way for new collaborations between sister cities and lead to a more robust Japan-U.S. relationship.
Next, Ryan Tomita, president of the Japanese Student Association at San Diego State University, delivered the keynote speech and talked about his experiences as an international intern in the Japanese city of Rikuzentakata, Iwate Prefecture. In the second-half of the workshop, attendees actively engaged in group discussions about the ways in which the Japan-U.S. friendship, based upon sister-city relationships, can collaborate with students -- torch bearers of the future -- and with the business world.
San Diego-Yokohama Sister City Society President Steven Sigafus and San Diego International Sister Cities Association’s Jessica Censotti provided considerable support to this event. About 70 attendees participated, including sister-city representatives, students with an interest in Japan-U.S. exchanges through sister-city ties, and Japan-affiliated business representatives interested in sister-city initiatives.
Consul General Kenko Sone CJSCN President Megumi Mizutani
Professor Ulrike Schaede Mr. Ryan Tomita (Keynote speech)
Group discussion Group discussion
Participants presenting a summary of their group discussion Introducing Japanese culture (Wadaiko)