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About Us

The Japan Society of Boston, Inc., is a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to promote cultural and economic ties and active interchange between Japanese and Americans for mutual understanding, business exchange, social connection, and friendship. We serve as a programming nexus for individuals, institutions, and businesses linked together by a strong interest in Japan and a shared recognition of the importance of the U.S.-Japan relationship.

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Staff

Staff

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Naoko Takayanagi
Director

 

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Chris Ellars
Special Events Associate

 

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Marie Romano
Intern

 

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Julia Napier
Operations

 

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Remy Kaldawy
Volunteer

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Danielle Cochran
Volunteer

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Joanne Ha
Program Manager

 

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Aoi Imoto
Intern

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Noah Coltani
Volunteer

 

 

Naoko Takayanagi was born and raised in Tokyo. She received a B.A. in Modern Languages from McGill University and an M.A. in International Public Administration from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. She worked in corporate banking, asset management, and financial translation, and has extensive experience teaching Japanese.

 

 

Christopher is a student at Boston University, where he majors in both Voice Performance and Japanese. He wishes to bridge his studies together to explore and spread Japanese music and culture throughout the world.

Marie Romano has cultivated a life-long interest in Japan. She double-majored in Philosophy and Japanese with minors in Asian Studies and Anthropology at the University of Texas at Austin. While she loves many aspects of Japanese culture, she is particularly interested in Japanese tea and was even on a TV show to learn all about tea production in Japan in 2018. Since then, she has traveled to Japan many times to further her knowledge of tea harvesting and processing, including working on a tea farm for three months. Having recently moved to Boston from Austin, Texas, she is excited to make new connections with the community and share a cup of tea.

 

Remy Kaldawy was born in New York and grew up in the greater Boston area. He is currently a student at Columbia University, where he studies mathematics. He has a passion for Japanese literature, which he has been cultivating since stumbling upon Kobo Abe’s The Woman in the Dunes. His favorite Japanese author is Yukio Mishima, the majority of whose works he is proud to have read. When he’s not puzzling over math, you can find him reading literature of all types, struggling to squeeze a half hour of exercise into his day, and scouring the mean city streets for a decent café.

 

 

Julia Napier has a BA in East Asian Studies and a minor in Art History. She has spent three years in Japan and loves learning about Japanese pop culture, traditional culture, literature, film, and food.

 

Remy Kaldawy was born in New York and grew up in the greater Boston area. He is currently a student at Columbia University, where he studies mathematics. He has a passion for Japanese literature, which he has been cultivating since stumbling upon Kobo Abe’s The Woman in the Dunes. His favorite Japanese author is Yukio Mishima, the majority of whose works he is proud to have read. When he’s not puzzling over math, you can find him reading literature of all types, struggling to squeeze a half hour of exercise into his day, and scouring the mean city streets for a decent café.

 

Danielle Cochran has studied the Japanese language for almost 20 years. She has a BA in East Asian Studies and minor in Japanese Language from UMass Boston. The first time she lived in Japan was to study at Intercultural Institute of Japan and the second was for an internship at the Sakae Institute of Study Abroad. Her interests include gaming and horror movies!

 

 

Joanne Ha was born in South Korea, and was raised in a multilingual and multigenerational household in Maryland. She graduated from Boston University with a BS in Film and Television, a BA in Religion, and a minor in Japanese language. Outside of JSB, she works as a freelance videographer and her current hobbies include tennis, nail design, and crochet!

 

 

Aoi was born and raised in Osaka, Japan. She is a second-year student at Waseda University, currently doing an exchange year at Brandeis University, majoring in international affairs and political science. She loves traveling and cafe-hopping.

 

Noah Coltani was born in Seattle and attended public schools in Tokyo throughout his childhood summers. His family lives in Setagaya-ku, and he enjoys visiting them every summer and winter. He graduated from Boston University and is currently attending Boston University School of Law. He hopes to one day practice law in both Boston and Tokyo.

Board

Board

ADVISORY BOARD

Michael H. Armacost
Lawrence K. Fish
Heisuke Hironaka

John Curtis Perry
Robert D. Reischauer

PRESIDENT EMERITUS

Peter M. Grilli

BOARD OF DIRECTORS
*denotes Executive Committee

Brian Chiappinelli*
Nicholas Elfner
Glen S. Fukushima
Megan Gates
Andrew Gordon*
Todd Guild
William W. Hunt, Chairman*

Kiyoshi Kurokawa
Midori Morikawa
Kiyoko Morita*

Susan Napier

James Nuzzo

Bernard Pucker

Toby Rodes, Treasurer*

Roger T. Servison*

John A. Shane, Vice Chair*

John Sinclair

Hirotaka Takeuchi
Keiko Thayer

Mikio Yoshimura

Contact Us

617-514-7345

Japan Society of Boston

50 Milk Street, 16th Floor
Boston, MA 02109

info@japansocietyboston.org

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JSB History

The Japan Society of Boston began as an informal discussion group sympathetic to Japan in the Russo-Japanese War. Until it disbanded during World War II, the Society was primarily an informal social organization, and mainly hosted visiting Japanese dignitaries.

Under the leadership of the late Ambassador Edwin O. Reischauer, with his return to the U.S. and to Harvard in the late 1960s, interest in the U.S. Japan relation in Boston and the surrounding regions was revived. In the late 1970s, the Society began to expand, acquired office space, and hired its first part-time staff member. Beginning in 1980, the Society received a series of milestone grants from the Japan-U.S. Friendship Commission that enabled it to hire a full-time executive director, expand its membership, increase its level of programming, and introduce new publications and other services.

 

The Japan Society of Boston has continued to thrive and grow, and currently offers its members and the general public a wide array of programs and informational services.

History

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