Participants in USJC’s 2019 Annual Conference in Los Angeles.

WASHINGTON — Irene Hirano Inouye, president of the U.S.-Japan Council, issued the following update on March 25.


I hope that this email finds you healthy and safe. The outbreak of COVID-19 is changing much about the way we go about our lives, and I’d like to share with you some of the steps we at the U.S.-Japan Council (USJC) are taking to continue to pursue our mission during this time.

USJC is committed to following the guidelines established by national and international authorities in order to minimize the spread of COVID-19. As the safety of our community is our highest priority, many of our events have been postponed or cancelled, including the 2020 Japanese American Leadership Delegation’s trip to Japan.

We will continue to monitor the situation as we make determinations about other programs, and we request that our community also follow best practice recommendations for health and safety guidelines, which are outlined here.

Despite these challenging circumstances, USJC can still provide an important platform for bringing together leaders from across Japan and the United States to share perspectives, experiences and ideas. We are organizing virtual programming both nationally and regionally to allow us to come together as a community and continue to advance our mission. As such, we are excited to announce our first public webinar.

The Coronavirus in the U.S. and Japan: Perspectives from the Health Sector

When: Thursday, April 2 (U.S.) / Friday, April 3 (Japan)

Time: 6:30-7:30 p.m. EST / 7:30-8:30 a.m. JST

Registration: Click here

This webinar is free to attend and open to the public.

We hope you will join us for this webinar exploring the evolving impact of the novel coronavirus in the United States and Japan and lessons we might learn from the experiences of our two countries. It will feature immunologist Dr. Mary Collins, provost of the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology; Dr. Hiroyuki Fujita, founder, president and CEO of Quality Electrodynamics and chairman of the board at the Cleveland Clinic; and moderator David Janes, member of the USJC Program Development Committee and senior advisor for Institutional Development at OIST.

We have an incredible community – and as we put together virtual programming, we would like to make sure we leverage and showcase the full range of expertise within it. If you would be willing to share your expertise in a virtual format (on a webinar or in writing), please click here to fill out a brief survey of the topics you might feel comfortable addressing.

Our thoughts are with those affected by the coronavirus in the United States, Japan and beyond. Please stay safe, and thank you for your continued support, partnership and dedication to our mission.

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